Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Mid-Week Mutterings - Featuring Rings & Things Product Review

What can you do with 2mm (size 1) black satin like (40% cotton, 60% polyester) rat-tail cordage (about a yard of it) and a foot long section of gunmetal hammered oval links? I was stumped. Then I saw Margot Potter's post about how she used these items, together, to create a fabulous mixed media necklace. She is the Beading Inspiration Muse-person of the Universe. First it was the choker forms, now this one. Thank you, Margot!

I'd posted back in March about some gunmetal colored metalized beads I'd found at Michael's, and these good sized, plain cobalt blue glass beads I'd gotten as a gift but couldn't figure out what to do with except that I wanted to use them together somehow. I'd gotten as far as deciding I'd string them on black Gudebrod Champion silk braided pendant cord. Well, the other day I swapped out that cord and used the rat-tail, which, by the way, made much nicer looking knots.

I kind of wish I had done some step by step photos...but I didn't, because once I got the inspiration, I just dove in and beaded to the finish. So, you'll have to imagine the steps as I describe them. I knotted the rat-tail between each of the gunmetal spheres and cobalt glass tubes and didn't use a repeating pattern (this is unusual for me, as I like symmetry) since the piece was going to be asymmetrical by virtue of having one side made from the oval link chain.

I used a gunmetal pendant for a focal that I'd found at Michael's during a different shopping trip, to facilitate the connection between the knotted beads and the gunmetal links. The back has a tubular loop, so I threaded the cord through that, used a half hitch knot to attach the links and took the free end of cord through the hole in the center of the disk and added a large gunmetal bead and a glass bead to tie off the loose end and secure the whole thing.

To finish it off, I made a coil and bent up the last loop, fixed it between two knots and put a split ring with a large gunmetal lobster-claw fastener* on it. Then, to fasten, you just clip the lobster to which ever link you want for the length of necklace you prefer.

Large lobster claw from Rings & Things - this is the size I use to finish my badge lanyards, it's where I fasten the snap loop that holds the badge.

Minor drawback to using this cord, had to enlarge holes in the beads a bit, so the reaming of same with a round file took a bit more time. Well worth the effort though.

For two more looks at how you can use the chain see JustATish and ABeadADay's creations.

Way back when I first was trying to figure out how to make this necklace I offered free earrings if I used a suggestion left in my comments for a focal piece. Although I didn't use either suggestion, I'd love to give those earrings to RockCreekCreations and Wombat1138 just for being so wonderful and making great suggestions - please email me if you want them, we'll talk about what kind you'd like.

I'm trying out a new online storefront application - ToldYa! So here's today's message from our sponsor:

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Blogger Dave Robertson said...

I'm another one who always defaults to symmetry in seeing this good-looking piece makes me think "I would never have thought of that". Thanks for a fresh idea, Dawno!


May 20, 2009 at 9:29 AM  
Blogger Margot Potter said...


Great work! I love it and I love how you describe your process.


May 20, 2009 at 9:52 AM  
Blogger JustATish said...

Yup Yup, this is great. I love watching your processes, and watching you try new things. It is fun to do something out of our safety zone - i.e. the random as opposed to the sim-eh-tree. I am proud of you!

May 20, 2009 at 9:57 AM  
Blogger Dawno said...

Dave, It's always fun to try new things and for a bonus, I like what happened, too! I'm so glad to be part of the blog partnership with R&T - makes me push the edges of the envelope!

Margot, thank you so much. Wouldn't have happened without getting a nudge from your beautiful necklace, though.

May 20, 2009 at 10:00 AM  
Blogger Dawno said...

Hey, Tish! I must have been writing my comment below you as you were commenting...thank you for being so encouraging. I love the way your work is so expressive and creative, it challenges me to cut loose a bit :-D

May 20, 2009 at 10:12 AM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Hi there! This is the one I saw on facebook, great mix of pieces!! I understand the "courage" it takes to move away from the good old conservative approach and break out a little bit. I'm working on that too!

May 20, 2009 at 4:28 PM  
Blogger Dawno said...

It's easy to 'do what you like' but then you never discover that you like other stuff! I'm glad to be trying new things. A teensy bit tentative about becoming a 'fad follower' tho. I've always been into classic looks or wild individuality - depending on my mood, of course!

May 20, 2009 at 6:00 PM  
Blogger Bev's Jewelry said...

I love what you did. Asymetrical is usually not my style but got to try. Margot is such an inspiration for new things. Funny too. Dave is very supportive and has good ideas also. Nice post.

May 21, 2009 at 3:02 PM  
Blogger rockcreekcreations said...

So I've been without an internet connection at home for 2 weeks an d too busy at work to do much surfing. I'm "catching-up" on some of my "must-reads". Twitter, then Dave at Rings-Things, then I saw your link at Rings-Things, so of course I had to come over here and read some. Glad to see you are at the convention this week, I hope it goes well for you!

Then I read on, and Hey, isn't that my name!! Oh yeah, I did try to give a creative spark for your necklace back when.Don't feel obligated to send me earrings, but am more than willing to accept them if you want to mail them.

Your necklace turned out very nice!


May 22, 2009 at 1:08 PM  
Blogger Dawno said...

Thank you, Bev for stopping by again. And Rockcreekcreations, got your email, will send those earrings early next week.

May 22, 2009 at 9:34 PM  

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