Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Inspired By Reading Book Club: A Rumor of Gems

A Rumor of Gems with Clasp from my necklace inspired by the book

Close up of double strand toggle clasp by Mary Harding

This month for Andrew Thornton's  Inspired by Reading Book Club we read A Rumor of Gems by Ellen Steiber.  This is a fantasy novel that is full of magic and the lore of gems.  I  was captivated by the setting and the incipient magic of the gems.  In the necklace I was inspired to make by this book I focused on the idea of captured power and magic in gems.  I used several beads that I made to convey the idea of fantasy and mystery.  

My starting point was some long Rosemary Herbal Totem sticks that I made recently.  I wanted to increase the raw gem like quality of these so I made some in porcelain clay. 

I was inspired to try dipping them into some Copper Clay slip by artist Petra Carpreau from Scorched Earth.  She makes beautiful rustic pieces using a technique of blending clay and bronze clay. You can check out her Etsy shop HERE.   Mine are quite different because of the way I did it and because of the copper clay being quite a different material than bronze clay.   The black color is from the copper clay slip and the gorgeous turquoise is a mid fire clay glaze.  I feel that the two together invoked the sense of the captured incipient power of the raw turquoise gemstone.

I further conveyed the talismatic feeling of mystery and captured or incipient power in making small copper clay charms and a fiber bead which I attached  to the tips of the peyote stitch strands.

 And to give the necklace more focus I made a large round focal bead from copper clay as the center energy point of the necklace.


                                 View of the entire free form peyote stitch talismatic pendant.

A view of necklace as it would look if worn

Since I loved the technique for the long porcelain beads, I made more of them and turned a pair of loosely matched totem sticks into a pair of captured gems earrings.

I wrapped  waxed linen around the tops of the earrings to increase the primitive talismatic look of the gem sticks.

As you can see, I had a wonderful time being inspired by the Rumor of Gems.  If you have an interest in the lore of gems, I highly encourage you to read the book and go to Ellen Steiber's website where she has an extensive list of books to read and information about gems.

But most of all, please  look at what the other readers were inspired to make by clicking on Andrew Thornton's blog for a complete list of those participating in today's blog hop.

or click on the list below

Mary K. McGraw http://mkaymac.blogspot.com/
Jenny Davies Reazor http://www.jdaviesreazor.com/blog/
Judy Campbell http://www.macmillanmarie.blogspot.com/
Jeanne Billeci Steck
Andrew Thornton, Laurel Ross, Terri Greenawalt http://andrew-thornton.blogspot.com/ 

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