This month's AJE monthly design challenge is hosted by Caroline Dewison and is all about trees. The image above is of a historic avenue of beech trees at Kingston Lacy in Dorset and is one of my favourite places. Originally 365 trees were planted (one for each day of the year) and they cover a two mile stretch of road which is pure joy to drive at any time of year. Some of the old trees are now beginning to show signs of distress so the National Trust are planting new trees to the side of these beauties so that they failing trees can eventually be replaced
This is hugely inspiring theme and I had a whole host of ideas that I wanted to try in a number of mediums but September turned out to be a very busy month. A great month with vacations and visitors but somewhat short on creative time so my offerings are fewer that hoped. The ideas are still there for future reference though so that's good.
In the end I decided to go down the bead embroidery route and use the iconic 'green man' as my take on the tree theme. I chose one of my own face cabochons and matched it with some Czech glass leaf beads. After securing the cab with a beaded bezel and stitching on the leaves I added accents with drop beads and bugle beads to give the feeling of layers of leaves.
To give the pendant a sense of movement and depth I added some branch fringing at the bottom.
This is a long necklace and I used a double length of distressed leather to provide a contrast representative of the bark of the tree.
I have a bit of a thing about Czech glass leaves and love working with this sort of a design as there are so many variations and I'm happy how his one turned out.
I also managed to do a quick remake that was a good fit for Caroline's theme. While giving my studio a thorough clean I came across this multi-string beaded bracelet but it had no focal element. I've no idea where the original went but I have plenty of tree related components so I knew I could find something to finish it off. The gorgeous etched copper oak leaf is by Julie Nordine and has been in my stash for many years since I was partnered with Julie in a Bead Soup challenge.
I think it works really well with the beaded section and the lampwork beads by Glass Bead Art.
We had a lot of interest in this challenge so I hope you'll join us on the blog hop to see how everyone else has been inspired by our wonderful woodlands - just click on the links below to join in. Many thanks to Caroline for hosting this months challenge and to you for for stopping by.