The theme for The Year of Jewelry this week is solstice. Festivities can involve wearing crowns of flowers and celebrating the fertility of the earth. One Swedish tradition involves a woman gathering seven different kinds of flowers from seven different gardens and putting them under her pillow so she will dream about her future spouse. I couldn't think of a more perfect piece to represent the summer solstice than this floral pendant by Ke Robinson.
Ke's paintings are extravagantly full of color and unabashed celebration. Her pelican paintings are magical and her aquatic scenes are enchanting. I'm a total fan of her work, can you tell? Go look at her Facebook page. I'll wait here for you. You'll be glad you did, I promise.
You're back? Was I right? When Ke offered to send me one of her beads, I jumped on the opportunity! And I wasn't disappointed. Her polymer clay pieces are every bit as whimsically colorful as her paintings.
After a couple of false starts, I came up with this design. Oh, you want to see what I didn't like? Okay, hold on...
See those snippets off to the left? Those are tries one and two. I just wasn't satisfied with the colors in either of them - they were either too insipid for the pendant or fighting for attention. I finally settled on a chartreuse green and dark greenish blue combination that makes me think of sunlight and shadows on foliage. I did a spiral knotting technique to produce a fairly substantial necklace and added two more of Ke's beads in fuchsia for an unexpected pop of color along the way.
I used some brass end caps to finish the ends and added a length of chain to make the necklace adjustable. A lobster clasp just didn't seem special enough, so I fashioned a hook from some brass wire. A little Vintaj leaf finishes off the chain.
And thank you, Ke, for letting me design with one of your pieces!