Friday, September 30, 2011

Artisan Clay: Down the Mixed Media Path

First off, I have to pat myself on the back for actually being done on time this month!  Sure, it's Thursday night before the last Friday, but it's not Friday morning!!  I luuuuuurve this button from Kristie's latest Artisan Clay Design Team stash so I wanted to do something really fun and funky with it.  As part of my monthly challenge to get one project done on time, I was figuring I'd do something with the big button at ArtBliss...my phenomenal adventure last weekend (that I have yet to write about.)  But, alas, it didn't come to pass.  I've had lots of paper out lately working on boxes and beads and such, so I was thinking that maybe I'd try something more in the crafty lane rather than the jewelry lane.  Lord knows how long I've had this frame stuck on my workroom shelf waiting for something to happen, but this was the week....
The challenge of this piece...to keep the focus on the button and not on distracting details.  I was really worried about making sure the highlight of the frame design would bring out the best of the button.  It would be really cool to put something more artsy like some calligraphy or an artful photo in the frame, but I settled on this black and white pic of me and my sweetie from our little Montgomery, Alabama, wedding back in 2008. 
The finish on the button was a greyish blue, so I went through both my huge stashes of beads and paper to find some coordinating materials.  I decided to keep it monochromatic in the spirit of keeping the attention on the focal (and whatever's in the frame!) 
I left rustic edges and a lot of the plain wood of the frame showing because I liked the warmth of the color.  I'd almost say I like the natural finish, but it's not really all that natural looking!  haaaaaaaaa  I tore the paper to keep it looking "imperfect" and funky.  When I went through my scrapbooking phase years ago with my buds Lauren & Alicia, we were all into the tearing edges for "character" and I've remained a fan. 
 I shopped through my blue, grey, and silver bead drawers and came up with some fun little bits that bring out the color of the button's glaze but also play with the shapes...round and square.  The kyanite squares are my favorites, but there are also some bamboo-shaped blue stones (maybe some sort of moonstone because they have a gorgeous luster) that are a great dark addition.
I tied all those shapes together with steel wire that I coiled and looped in what I deemed to be a pleasing arrangement.  Then, I busted out the glue gun!  I haven't had that baby out for ages...it still has wear and tear on it from my dried flower arranging phase.  (yes, I've had a lot of phases...haaaaaaaaaa)  Oh, and there's a bit of mica layered on there as well...just because it was on the table and I like the texture and color with the rest of the mix.

In closing....here's a Picnik collage (because I was having fun on there working my blog header!)
Artisan Clay Design Team September
In actual FINAL closing...let me send you off to see what the rest of the Artisan Clay Design Team came up with this month!!

Oh....in really, I mean it, closing...there's an Artisan Clay trunk show at my local bead shop:  Bead Haven, here in Hampton, Virginia, so if you're close by, I highly encourage you to check it out.  Or, if need be, just tell me what you want and I'll shop!  haaaaaaaaaaa  (There is some seriously awesome stuff in those trays!)

10 comments:

  1. Oh-My-Goodness! This is gorgeous! I really love it. I didn't know you were scrapbook-crafty! Great job, Jenn!

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  2. What a wonderful keepsake Jen, great job!

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  3. You and I seem to be on parallel paths, Miss Jen. I went through all those phases as well, including one where I made unique picture frames with all sorts of mixed media before mixed media was mixed media. And tearing paper for a deckle edge is the BOMB! I also like to tea stain it if it has a white core. Beautiful outside the jewelry box thinking on this one Miss Jen! You do, indeed, ROCK, as they say.
    ;-)
    Enjoy the day!
    Erin

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  4. Love the soft colors of this project. I also adore the idea of using it the button on a picture frame, rather than a piece of jewelry. And what a cute couple! Great job dear!

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  5. Using Kristie's bead as a frame detail is an awesome idea! Beautiful creation.

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  6. Jen what a lovely picture frame, I love how you incorporated the button and the beads and wire very unique. Love the wedding picture of you and your hubby!!!

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  7. Very cool! You are always so out of the box. I love it.
    Shannon C

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  8. I love family pictures but hate the daunting task of getting them all in frames. Now this has inspired me to have fun doing it. Wonderful!!

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  9. What a great way to use Kristie's button! Love the frame and all the thought you put into it. ;)

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  10. What a clever idea, Jen. And the frame with that photo is so perfect. You didn't overwhelm the button at all. It's a great focal (as are you & your sweetie). Love it!

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Charleston, SC, United States
I'm a retiree/artist/student who makes things. It's a nice kind of lifestyle!

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