March 10, 2013

Year Of Jewelry Week 10 - Wabi Sabi

Beaded macrame bracelet by Sherri Stokey of Knot Just Macrame with ceramic piece by Scorched Earth.

I have to admit I had no idea what Wabi-sabi was before this week's theme for the Year of Jewelry.  After a little research, this is what I can share:  Wabi-sabi is a Japanese aesthetic embracing beauty in imperfection and impermanence.  It's an acceptance of the natural cycle of growth, decay, and death.  Flea markets, garage sales, patina and cracks rather than shopping malls and shiny perfection.  OK, I can do this.  I'm the queen of garage sale season.  Check out these posts about my booty (and that's like loot booty - minds out of gutters, please) Saling and Garage Sale Finds.

Turns out it's way harder than it sounds, if you're fussy like me.  My little knots have to line up just right or all is not right in my world.  But, I know an artist who does wonderful things with imperfection and I recently had her make some bracelet ends that I designed just for macrame.  Petra of Scorched Earth did these end pieces for me.  They're just incredible and they have a bar for me to attach my cords.  She has an organic, earthy style that doesn't even pretend to be perfect, and that's the beauty of it.

Micro Macrame bracelet with picasso czech glass beads and ceramic end pieces.

I was a little off my game when I sat down to make this piece.  The first time around I cut my cords too short.  The second time they were the right length, but I decided the color was wrong.  Third time's a charm, though, I got them long enough and I really like this green color with the end pieces and the Czech glass beads.  I've used these beads with Petra's pieces before - I think they go well together.  There's nothing fussy about these beads.  They're colorfully unapologetic.

Macrame with Czech glass beads with picasso finish
And there you have it.   That's my homage to  Wabi-sabi.  I know I didn't really get in the life cycle concept.  It's pretty hard for me to wrap my mind around the death of a bead.  It's just too sad - we can't go there.  But I did manage to loosen up and bit and get a little more organic feel to this piece.  I think.  Either way, it was a fun exercise and I really love the bracelet!

Micromacrame bracelet with beads and clay end pieces


  1. Well, if that's wabi sabi, I want to be imperfect too!!!

  2. I think it's fantastic -- the end components really set the mood, and you complemented and completed them so perfectly. It's beautifully organic!

  3. Oh wow - you have nailed it! This is stunning! Those end clasps are amazing! Did you make them yourself? This is my favorite piece yet! Absolutely gorgeous!

  4. Thank you! No no no - I didn't make the end pieces - that was Petra of Scorched Earth. She's amazing!

  5. Sherri, this is super cool - love it! I must confess that the "death" of a bead would have me in tears, but I think your interpretation of Wabi-Sabi is outstanding!!

  6. I did have this one for sale, but someone already snapped it up. I still have a few more ends, though and I'll definitely be making more bracelets with them!


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