Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Brit Pack Beaders - We're Back...!

Well actually we've been here all the time but everyone on the team has been so busy this year that it's taken us until now to all be able to take on our next challenge - where did the last 6 months go that's what I want to know!

If you're new to the BPB's you can find out more by visiting the page tabbed at the top of this post but the basic premise is
that we are a group of 5 jewellery and component designers (Claire Braunbarth, Jo Tinley, Rebecca Anderson, Bo Hulley and myself) who take on Bi-monthly jewellery Challenges. For each challenge, one person will choose a theme based on anything they like - could be music, literature, film, visual images anything at all that inspires that person. Each person is then allocated one of five design items - clasps, focal beads, accent beads, decorative embellishments and stringing material, and must send each pack member one of those that has some relevance to the theme. Ultimately, everyone will all end up with a design kit put together by five people with which to create a piece of jewellery inspired by the theme.

For this challenge it was Bo's turn to decide on the theme and she chose this painting by
Dante Gabrielle Rosetti...

Oil on canvas, dated 1870, 109.2 x 90.5cm, Aberdeen Art Gallery & Museums Collections
The painting depicts Jane Morris, the wife of William Morris posed as Mariana from Shakespeare's 'Measure For Measure' a women deserted by her betrothed (click link on picture for more information). It's a rich and sumptuous painting and the team has once again put together some wonderful components for the challenge...

Along with choosing the theme Bo was responsible for providing the clasp and sent me this lovely floral button clasp...

Focals were down to Claire and she commission Pippa Chandler to make these lovely Polymer Clay flower beads which perfectly match the key colours of the painting...

Jo has supplied a lovely selection of lampwork and Czech glass accent beads which again pick up the rich tones but also add some balance with some lovely neutrals...

String materials were down to Rebecca and she sent me this gorgeous silk string in graduated shades of peachy pink and some dark blue waxed linen...

My job for this task was to provide embellishments so I made some little bronze links and charms influenced by some of the motifs in the painting - Mariana's hair decoration, the tapestry...and the tiny heart is perhaps a little nod to the heart break of her desertion.

I think you'll agree this really is a lovely collection of components to work with...

If you'd like to see how we all do with this challenge then join us back here on Wednesday 31st July when we'll be revealing our finished designs. You can also check out what the rest of the team think of the challenge by visiting their latest blog and Facebook posts...

See you back here n the 31st.



  1. So then Lesley - we've been given a beautiful set of ingredients to play with - any ideas yet? I keep changing my mind but I'm sure inspiration will strike in time for the reveal!

  2. Hi Lesley,
    Love the inspiration painting and all of the components you get to work with. I am so looking forward to seeing the gorgeousness you have created using your set.

  3. Lesley, I love your Brit Pack Beaders adventures. Your group always comes up such wonderful inspirational artwork. I've been focused on clasps lately and I fell in love with that beautiful flower clasp. Your embellishments are fantastic. I am looking forward to seeing the group's finished pieces.

  4. Oh I just love when you guys get together! I drool over the collection you pull together, and can't wait to see what you all do with these!


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