Tag Archives: pod beads

Waiting for bunchberries

I am always looking at leaf textures and considering which ones to use with metal clay, but the leaf I use most often is that of the bunchberry dogwood. The back side has raised veins that recreate the lines of the front, when pressed into fresh soft clay. I guess you could say the bunchberry is my “go to” leaf.

I’ve been looking for bunchberry plants in shady areas on the side of the road. Where are they? I thought they would be out by now, but they are not in their usual spots. Maybe I am looking for them too early in the season. The only leaves to be found, where I usually find bunchberries, are the wild lily of the valley.

 (Pretty little flowers, but the smooth leaf texture = boring.)

In my road side search, today, I remembered to look for old goldenrod stems from last fall. Since making my silver pod bead from the mold of a triple stem gall, I wanted to find a single stem gall to make a mold for single pod beads.

Though they were well-camouflaged in all of the dead grass and sticks on the side of the road, I was able to spot a few.  I may still be waiting for the bunchberry plants to show up, but at least I didn’t have to wait until fall to find these.

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Pod beads hang out together

The center bead is fine silver metal clay, made from a mold taken from a goldenrod stem gall. I call it my pod bead. As I was trying to decide which of my other beads to include in the necklace, Sue Kennedy posted some dark glass pod beads on her blog. I went to her Etsy site and snapped them up right away. I knew they would be the perfect match for my pod bead.

I love finding beads made by other artists to combine with my own. I am drawn to the work of others who like making      beads as much as I do. I made all the silver PMC beads in this necklace. Two are made from molds taken from beach rocks, and four of them are the drape beads I learned to make in Fred Woell’s workshop. The clasp is one I made a while ago for another necklace. The bunch berry leaves I used in the clasp will be coming up again soon, now that it’s spring.

The freshwater coin pearls were just the right color match for Sue’s beads. I’m happy with how everything came together. I wish the sun had been out today for better photos. (I wish the sun would just come back out period.)  I was in an hurry anyway as I took the photos late in the day. I didn’t get everything done today, but I am satisfied with what I accomplished. Clean fridge, sourdough bread made, clean closet, organized dresser, tidied up studio, suitcase packed, and now daily blog post finished!

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