Everyone interested in participating must have a blog, and signs up over a certain 3 day period. Then, the Queen Wizard of Beading matching, begins to assign pairs of people to create a 'bead soup' of mixed beads to include one focal bead, one clasp and then various and sundry other beads or as I like to think of them, more building blocks. Once paired, beads are traded between the partners whose main objective is to create a 'soup' that will challenge their partner to move out of their comfort zone and create something new, out of their comfort zone.
Now, my partner is Jean Peter, and I mean, WOW! Jean is an accomplished jewelry designer and bead fanatic who even teaches the craft to others. One would not be surprised then by the package that I received in the mail! An amazing assortment of colors and textures to delight every sense, and yes, a challenge!
Now, before I show you the beads, I have to let you see how things progressed in even getting to open the box! This is Oyster, our adopted rescue cat from an abandoned oyster house in Apalachicola, Florida about 3 years ago on our last beach vacation. Her nickname is 'StringThing' as she just Adores anything that is anywhere close to being a piece of string. (This cat even flosses!)
Well, I opened the shipping carton to find this incredibly beautiful wrapped box. It is tied with cording, so immediately, the String Thing took up position of Guardian. I could not get a picture of the box, without the cat, so finally I just shot what I could during the process of discovery.
She untied the box and then went for that cording! I was involved in reading the Treasure Map that came with the box....
Certainly something to catch one's imagination!
What does one say about such a find? I found two focal beads, both handmade by Jean that are just well, Stunning. There are two amazing clasps, a bevy of beads in blues, reds and cream as well as pearls, crystals, textured copper sheet (dying to find out if that is from a rolling mill or What!), rivets, brads and more copper beads unlike any I have ever seen before! There are also more clasps and focal beads, since she did not count the key either!
Now, in order to make room to work with so many wonderful surprises, I began a 3 day cleaning of my studio, to clear the work table and begin drawings. What a challenge this is....!!!
Now as to my bead soup to Jean, I sent the following:
My grouping to her consisted of a lamp work focal by artist Jan Thompson, along with some of her exquisite striking glass round beads, olivine, enameled beads, midnight blue sandstone squares, and an assortment of green and blue crystals and pearls, some shell and bronze pearls. I also included some of my handmade copper bead caps and a clasp, left out of the picture as an extra surprise. The ribbon I had made to go with this arrived a little later, but Jean does have it in hand. I will be excited to see what she brings to her challenge with these beads.
Jean has been such a delight and with her busy, busy schedule has been lovely and generous and I feel very privileged to have such an accomplished partner!
Our reveal date is April 6th, so be sure to stop back by to see what creative magic transforms these assortments into wearable art. See you then!