Monday, September 14, 2015
Working the Five Wrap Bracelet by jean baldridge yates
These photos were taken at night. This is not the way I like to take photos but I was happy when I finished this project, so I thought, "What the heck!" --jean
This five wrap bracelet, which I call "Bring It On, Fall!", was an eye opener for me as far as technique and planning, Having made only one five wrap, previously, I thought I would try again, this time with my own palette. I chose this palette guided by advice on colors expertly and generously offered by Lacey at Beadshop . I had some residuals from my book, Links. I wanted to make some jewelry using my jewelry book money. I wrote Beadshop using their online form and explained what I wanted.
It turns out that right now, Beadshop is holding a challenge. The inspiration of Autumn is an integral part of the challenge, As you can see below, from this picture I took from the Beadshop site (thanks Beadshop, hope you don't mind), the colors we see expressed in an Autumn palette are a panoply of all sorts of startlingly beautiful reds, sensual purples, brilliant yellows, lush golds,sky blues,earthy browns and more. Yeah, more! Fall is cool!
Anyway, I returned to Beadshop after reading the book I recently reviewed on wrap bracelets, DIY Wrap Bracelets, here.. I like the hip and casual look. I wanted to make another five wrap. I chose Beadshop for help because as far as I am concerned they are THE place to go if you are into the leather and woven bracelet look, They have all the materials and all the knowledge.
I went there and rewatched their tutorial on herringbone wrap bracelets. It is in video form and is available at the site, as well as on their channel on YouTube. Their channel is excellent and worth checking out.
Fall does such wild things to jewelry designers.
It makes you want to stop paddling and disembark from your kayak. Instead of hooting and hollering as you shoot the rapids in your bikini and life vest, you want to start crafting.
It makes you want put down your bow and arrow and come in from the forest. Instead of hunting in deep silence with piercing eyes, all seeing, you just want to curl up in your soft greige cashmere sweats and your slouchy socks. Light a fire in your Victorian fireplace, and start crafting.
Ah, Fall, It makes you want to "reflect on stuff" as the sun sets before you in a swooning blaze, coloring your world while you listen to old rock and roll songs, and start crafting,
I wanted an edgy look for this bracelet, after having made a very pretty but non edgy bracelet previously.
I chose brown, currant, nutmeg and latte for my Chinese Cord to weave with.
The gemstones I chose are Garnets (two types: one seems to be Hessonite. It is more of a whiskey color), Citrines, and Pyrite plated in Copper.
I chose dark red for my KO thread, and dark chocolate for my Greek leather.
I chose a brass colored button.
Note that you can make a bracelet using Czech beads, replacing the gemstones, and lower the price, It will be equally pretty. I used two strands of those, one flashing pinks and one flashing yellows, in my first bracelet. That one also had white faceted Jade and Peridot. See here.
The KO thread you lash the beads on with will fit, doubled, through the tiniest beads, However it isn't always easy. I swear a lot when I am threading the littlest beads, I feel incredible triumph when I get them on the thread. You have to keep trying when you make these bracelets. Sometimes you have to give up on a particular stone and try another from the strand you are working with. Weird but true; it works.
You do have some frustration, as I mention, but the general feeling which making these bracelets primarily evokes is a very peaceful and relaxing one.
Here are some of the essentials you need in order to make a five wrap bracelet:
Intention, resolution and a love of this style of bracelet to gear you up
Time (a weekend)
Organizational skills (just for the moment, but you gotta be prepared to have them for the duress)
A bead board (don't even think about doing this without one)
A Threadburner (ditto)
A playlist (music!!!) for when you are not referring to the video
and a Zen-like Patience. You will know when you get it, even if you never had it before.
As Fate and Destiny would have it,
my bracelet contains the birthstones of my son Robert and my father Robert.
They are two heroes of mine.
I had not planned to make a birthstone bracelet...it was a beautiful serendipitous gift and a total surprise, I am so happy about this.
If you plan to sell these bracelets, good luck parting with them once you have made them. There is something about them which is far more personal than most of the jewelry I make, I know.
Is it in the stars for me to sell my own versions of 5 wrap bracelets,if and when I make more?
I don't know. Making this one and my previous one have however inspired me to look at the world of wrap bracelets from an inside point of view. I say to myself now, "I really love making this kind of jewelry!"
I bought all my materials from Beadshop during a recent sale. Get on their subscription mailing list and look for their sales!