The goal of this bead swap was to trade with a partner you don't know, giving them a bead or beads you have hoarded, treasured, and loved, sending them out to be worked up into a piece of jewelry or art. Each participant was also supposed to write a note about the beads they sent -- where they came from and why they were chosen.
I have two partners, Audrey Belanger and Loralee Kolton. First, we have Audrey. This is what I sent her:
The large focal is made by Keysha Koy. I love Keysha's work and at one show I practically poured all her beads into my bag. It was difficult to give one up but it went to a good home!
This is what Audrey sent me -- the front of the pendant....
And the back:
Audrey made this piece using resin. The front is made with a bird from a silk paper kit, adorned with glitter flakes and flowers. The backdrop is from a French dictionary, which she thought was apt for me, an avid reader! This is the only piece out of all my pieces I received that I knew immediately what to do with it. Stay tuned!
She also sent me this ceramic piece:
This one is Zack's favorite. He said he saw the organic birds in the ceramic as pterodactyls! Audrey said she bought this when Moriah Betterly of Blu Mudd stopped making beads and had her final sale.
Finally, she sent this one:
This lampwork bead was part of a custom set of three made by Donna Millard. Audrey's girlfriend owns one of them, Audrey has one, and now I am incredibly honored to own the third. She said this one was the hardest to give up, and I can totally understand why! She also sent some sweet vintage acrylic rose beads.
Aren't the colors in the lampwork bead totally me?
Thank you, Audrey!
And now for Loralee Kolton! This is what I sent to her:
I sent a set of Jelveh Jaferian. I totally hoard her beads. She is also one of the very first lampwork artists I ever bought from, way back when I started making jewelry. I believe in loyalty!
And this is what I received from Loralee. First, she had a cute box with a sweet glittery heart perched on top:
The heart was quite apt, as when I set aside the cushioning, it revealed a Round Rabbit ceramic heart! This is special to me because Nancy is no longer making ceramic jewelry pieces, but please visit her store to see her amazing sewn goods!
It reminds me of a Victorian summer dress. I've been reading a lot of Deborah Moggach (author of a ton of books but also the film "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel", which was awesome) and in her books, expats in Pakistan and India take center stage. Maybe that's why I think of this piece that way.
Here's the entire set. I'm a huge fan of vintage Lucite and these pale olive green nuggets just call my name. She also added a strand of matte black Czech glass daggers. I've got to admit, I am lousy with daggers, so we'll see what happens!
She also sent me a gift a week ago, a charm handpainted by Gaea, and if I have time (and I'm already laughing -- extra time? Bosh.) I'll work with it. But it's so special I don't know yet what to do!
So the hoarding begins again.