Friday, November 26, 2010

Of Brooches and Bangles

I'm sure many of us are in the same boat. The holidays are approaching, and you're either ramping up for shows, ramping up for gifting, or just ramping up. ;) Recently, I've had requests for bangle bracelets, so have been making a few. Some I've made smooth, which means the size is set. I've made others where I sized them. The need to be able to size a bracelet, and then make sure the place where the ends join looks nice, is one of the issues polymer folks face. You can, of course, cut the bracelet, and then wrap the spot where they join with more polymer. Another solution is to use commercial tubing cut to an appropriate length. PMCers can make their own fine silver tubes, and really make a statement. I decided to try something from the seed beading world. I created bands of seed beads which are woven around the polymer bangle, hiding the join area and adding some sparkle and - I think - a bit of class. The example above shows 3 bracelets with seed bead closures, one with none.
I've also been making some bracelets using brass channel bangles and inserting polymer canes. I've had some requests for classes for bangles, so will be teaching classes in both techniques. Details and more photos are on the class and workshop page.
The other thing I've been playing with is brooches. I've never made pins before, and found myself wondering if a particular piece should be a pin or a pendant...So I purchased some of the pin/pendant convertible closures, and each of my pieces can be either a pin - or a pendant! I agree with Arlene Harrison who had seen these at a Klew workshop - they are a nice, nice solution. I particularly liked this one:

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