Friday 30 November 2012

Challenge of Colour 2012

I am taking part in two blog hops today - if you are  looking for the 'AJE Component of the month' hop you will find it here.

Welcome to the 3rd Annual Challenge of Colour blog hop and huge thanks to Erin Prais-Hintz and Brandi Hussey for once again organising an event of monumental proportions and providing us all with such stunning inspiration pieces from the Nasa 'Earth as Art' collection of unique topographical images

Life has been a little manic here of late to say the least so although we were offered two palettes, on this occasion I decided to be sensible and just commit to one - although I did manage to make two pieces even though it went to the wire as usual. This is the palette I chose from those selected for me:

Desert to Forest
March 28, 2009

In the American Southwest, transitions from one ecosystem to another can be dramatic and abrupt. This certainly is true in northern Arizona, USA, where the parched Painted Desert, shown here in a palette of purples, adjoins Sitgreaves National Forest (shades of green), a realm of pine woodlands with abundant wildlife. Within the Painted Desert lie the Hopi Buttes, a field of ancient volcanic cones, seen here as a scattering of dark, circular shapes near the top of the image.

Green is my my favourite colour and I'm rather fond of purple too so thank you again Erin!

In the past I've had  a habit of sweating it too much over these challenges and trying to find exact matches for every tone and include every shade but this time I decided I was going to be much freer with it by choosing beads that have an overall feel of the palette and going with my first instincts. For my first piece I selected a group of beads and then put the rest of the stash out of sight so they wouldn't distract me and it seemed to work as I decided pretty quickly on a bracelet. I chose lampwork beads for this and Fine silver to represent the paler tones of the palette...this was the result.

The mottled ribbed round beads were the obvious starting point since they already combine purple and green but they also reminded me of tiny little worlds viewed from space. The silvered green beads picked up the same green from these. The barrel beads that look pink in these photo's are in fact a perfect match for the purple, I just couldn't get them to look their natural colour without changing the tone of everything else - glass can be a challenge in itself! I used some Hill Tribe hammered lentils to lift the colours and strung the beads on waxed linen to get the rustic feel I'm so fond off but then I took an unusual turn for me. I wanted something to suggest the feeling of lushness and abundance I get from the image so I started making lots of little dangles - not something I do often. With pale green and amethyst crystal and some blue black Czech glass to represent the volcanic area which can be seen as the mottle black patch at the top of the image these also add a lovely sense of movement.

I clustered these along three Hill Tribe hammered rings so that that they would cascade from the bottom of the bracelet and counterbalance the weight of the larger beds. Finally I finished it off with a hand made silver clasp. I've called this piece 'Abundant Earth'.

Ribbed and silvered lampwork beads by Lush Lampwork
Purple barrels by Alchemy lampwork

My second piece came about from two focals that jumped out at me when I was first going through my beads. When I first saw the images for this hop the old Carpenters song 'Top of the World' came into my mind (and stuck there!) and these two focal seemed to lend themselves to that so, with a simple little treatment my second piece is called...what else but "Top of the World".

The cute little ceramic bird by Blueberri Beads is nestled in one of my own bronze bead caps and sat atop a stunning Moogin focal which reminds me rather of a patchwork quilt of fields. A purple class drop and bronze heart and flower charms complete the pendant.

I've hung this simply form a Vintaj chain but have added a little embellishment with some beautiful ceramic beads by Summers Studio and some Czech glass beads. The necklace is quite long and adjustable and has a great fun feel to it.

So there you have my colour inspired pieces for 2012. I could play this game for ever and I do have a little plan to spend some quiet time over Christmas investigating some of the these 'Earth as Art' pictures more closely and maybe even designing a few more pieces. I hope you join me on this blog hop and see what everyone else has created...I am sure there are going to be some some stunning pieces so please follow me and enjoy!

Erin Prais-Hintz
Rebecca Anderson
Kris Auderer
Chrizette Bayman
Lori Bowring Michaud
Courtney Breul
Lynsey Brooks
Stephanie Buss
Iveth Caruso
Shannon Chomanczuk
Lisa Cone
Cece Cormier
Lori Dorrington
Dawn Doucette
Jeannie Dukic
Kim Dworak
Beth Emery
Janice Everett
Pam Farren
Donetta Farrington
Gloria Ferrer
Cherrie Fick
Therese Frank
Patty Gasparino
Tanya Goodwin
Ambra Gostoli
Jess Green
Denielle Hagerman
Mary Harding
Karla Hartzog
Kim Hora
Brandi Hussey
Emanda Johnson
Jennifer Justman
Sue Kennedy
Ema Kilroy
Lee Koopman
Linda Landig
Kirsi Luostarinen
Cynthia Machata
Alicia Marinache
Beth McCord
Mary K McGraw
Karen Mitchell
Cheri Mitchell-Reed
Aimee Moisa
Karla Morgan
Penny Neville
Becky Pancake
Kashmira Patel
Alice Peterson
Kayla Potega
Debbie Price
Bobbie Rafferty
Caron Reid
Nicole Rennell
Cynthia Riggs
Andrea Ross
Sally Russick
Annie Scherz
Pam Sears
Renetha Stanziano
Sandra Stein
Kristen Stevens
Tracy Stillman
Sherri Stokey
Lola Survillo
Kay Thomerson
Jo Tinley
Emma Todd
Cory Tompkins
Pam Traub
Melissa Trudinger
Michelle Tucker
Shelley Graham Turner
Monique Urquhart
Rachel Van-Walsk
Patti Vanderbloemen
Lesley Watt
Lynn White
Joan Williams



  1. Wow, Lesley two beautiful pieces. I really love how you have interpreted the colour palettes, fabulous work.
    Of course I now have the Carpenters stuck in my head but at least Karen had a lovely voice :D

  2. Wow! First, I absolutely love your palette! Great pieces and beads!!! Have to say that your bracelet is my favorite.

  3. Beautiful pieces Lesley, I am a little biased to my favourite, but they're both gorgeous!

  4. Impeccable work as always. Of course I am biased because you have used one of my absolute favorite color combinations. But my favorite is the necklace.

  5. I love these pieces! Is this it, is this the set you keep for yourself? You told me you were going to settle in and make something for yourself. I love them both, but I really loooooovvve the bracelet.

  6. I am a terrible blog hopper - the first I do is scroll down the page and look at all of the gorgeous photos - then I go back and read the accompanying text! Well, I did not do that this time - I was stopped dead in my tracks on your bracelet pic - OMG - so totally, utterly gorgeous, Lesley! The colors and textures - and I love that you used silver - a good call on your part! And your necklace - particularly that Moogin Bead - swoon! Both are gorgeous, and I, too, will be spending time over Christmas, when things slow down, to peruse new palettes!

  7. This is the area where I live, and I think you captured the changing landscapes and the geographical colors and feeling perfectly in your pieces. To the North of me is the Painted Desert, to the South is the Forest and the gorgeous White Mountains, where the Mogollon Rim resides. Indeed, "Earth is Art" and is represented well by the pieces you made!

  8. Lesley your pieces are so beautiful...your choice of beads amazing. You have created jewelry that speaks to my heart.

  9. Amazing colours and wonderful design style, Lesley... me like!

  10. Green is my favorite color, too, and you have featured the shades from the photo to great effect in these pieces. Your bracelet is a stunner, and I have lingered over every detail of every bead!

  11. Weren't the Challenge of Color palettes just beautiful? I was so happy with the ones I got. You made such gorgeous pieces with yours! You did a fantastic job on this challenge!

  12. You made such beautiful pieces, love the colours, also really loving the bird bead, so cute!
    Deb x

  13. Oh my goodness, these pieces are jusp plain dang amazing!

  14. They are both just luscious -- the bracelet is particularly stunning! You got a beautiful palette to work with, and you turned it into a couple of fantastic pieces.

  15. Both your pieces are just so fabulous! The color palette is so pretty! Love that little bird and that lampwork bead in your necklace!

  16. Love both! Great job! I also am planning on looking at all the palettes in the coming months, to get even more inspiration!

  17. I love your bracelet and necklace, that little bird is adorable! Cheri

  18. Oh Lesley, wow! These are just beautiful. I think i must be adjusted now to the silver market, since an all silver piece looks that much more special to me. I think there will be many of us trying out several palettes. I'm very curious to see how many palettes may be "left-over", unchosen, almost an unbelievable thought

  19. GORGEOUS pieces! They are brilliant :) - the color palette is my dream colors...and I so loved your choice of beads in BOTH your pieces...but have to say that necklace with the choice of beads, details and that sweet little bird just melted my heart - super fantastic job! JLynn

  20. Both of your pieces are beautiful!

  21. Beautiful pieces. Always a treat and a wonderful surprise to see what you have created.

  22. Lesley, I like both of them and that fab color pallette But I fell in love with the little birdie piece. So cheerful and evokes trees and forest for me.

  23. Delicate and chunky combined - love it!

  24. How lovely is that bracelet! And the little bird in its 'nest'. Both are beautiful. Andrea

  25. So very cute! Loved both designs!

  26. Gorgeous - these are so beautiful - love the beads and the match to the colour palette Ƹ̴Ӂ̴Ʒ

  27. Oooh Lesley I love what you've created with your pallet, and I love your pallet too, It almost looks like a close up of a stone of some kind, gorgeous

  28. I just love the mix of colors and have to say when I first looked at the bracelet it jumped out and said gorgeous.

  29. Leslie, those are both stunning. That palette is one of my favorites and you just made it even more so. I love the drops in your bracelet the beads you chose are so amazing. That necklace is also drop dead gorgeous. I love the little bird sitting in her nest.

  30. Wonderful. Your first bracelet is indeed abundant. Both of your pieces explore the color palette very well.

  31. Gorgeous, absolutely gorgeous! I can definitely see how the ribbed beads from the bracelet reminded you of little worlds - now that's all I can see! And I love the pops of color in your necklace. That little birdie is so charming.

    Thank you for playing along!

  32. Both pieces are fabulous but I really love the bracelet - and those ribbed beads. Wonderful color choices too!

  33. Beautiful pieces. I love both designs, especially the little bird!

  34. Love the colors and texture of your bracelet and the simplicity of your necklace.

  35. Can't . . . breathe . . . you've . . . take my . . . breath away! GORGEOUS!!!

  36. Nobody does it as well as you, are such an inspiring artist! Your jewelry is perfection, and your're simply amazing.

  37. Miss Lesley, I do believe that you need to design with your gut more often! And of course you know that the #1 rule of my Challenges is to have fun, and I can tell that you did! I love the combination of purple and green. When I was a kid I wanted my room to be that color but my mother didn't have that same love, so I ended up with blue instead. And I hated it. But this rich palette has so much variety within those two colors. I love it. Thank you for introducing me to these new-to-me lampwork artists! I don't wear bracelets often, but I do love this with the sense of movement you have created. But the wee birdie pendant calls to me. That Moogin bead is fantastic. Very lovely! Enjoy your time off from creating and congratulations on the 1000 sales! I just hit 500 and I am over the moon. I can't even imagine getting to four digits! Woot! So happy you joined me. Enjoy the day. Erin

  38. Your little bird resting in his cup/nest in the necklace is so cute. And I love that bracelet. The dangles are great. You really met the color challenge.

  39. Woohoo Lesley, Great workmanship! Love the Czech bangles you made to balance out the bracelet. I really love to wear bracelets that jiggle. This one really looks like a jiggler! Also the necklace - "the bird in hand sitting on top of the world" is just fabulous. Such pretty beads & match the color palette to a T. I too want to spend extra time working on other color palettes. They just sing to you, don't they?!:)

  40. Both pieces are fantastic! I love the designs, and all the handmade beads you used. The pieces are both earthy and fun. And now I have that song stuck in my head too.....


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