AJE March 2014 CoM Challenge Reveal ~ Wings of Gold

Can you believe how fast March has flown by? I sure can't! Here we are on the last day and I feel like it just began yesterday. How fitting for this month's AJE challenge component to be a gorgeous fluttering luna moth!

These glistening lovelies are each hand crafted by Caroline Dewison of Blueberribeads. Caroline shaped them in porcelain clay, hand carved all the details of their wings, and then glazed each one a stunning lustrous glaze.

Moths are a big favorite of mine, so I was very excited to play along in this month's challenge. I asked for one with two holes—one on either wing—and then Caroline surprised me with the color choice.

My moth is a bright and shiny gold. Although I love to work in warm tones, the gold was an immediate challenge for me—there are so many colors that can be combined beautifully with gold and yet, at the same time none of my choices looked quite right. And then there was the size—this moth is just shy of 3 inches long wing tip to wing tip. And so, in my usual fashion I thought about it, and thought about it… decided on a design weeks ago… finally started working on it late Saturday night… changed my mind completely Sunday afternoon…

And the sun set long before I finished… but it fell together so perfectly!

And here's what I created…

I titled it "Wings of Gold". I had originally intended to go with a spring hued palette with earthy browns, soft green, and white, but the gold of this moth kept whispering autumn to me… so instead of making it one of the first moths sighted in the new year, my moth became the last moth of autumn fluttering in the deepening sun-setting sky just before harvest-time turns to winter.

A beauty isn't it?

I'm good at making things much more complicated than need be—I spent quite a while searching for the right component to use to attach the moth to the beaded portion of my necklace. And when I couldn't find a chain that was perfect, I decided the only thing to do was make my own! I shaped each of these rings in 24 gauge bronze wire, stringing 2 oxblood magatama beads on each and then wire-wrapping around. They're connected together with tiny knotted strips of fabric. Tedious for sure, but I love wire-wrapping so I really enjoyed making this part.

For the beaded strand I used my own polymer rounds, czech glass, wood discs, and seed beads. I kept a pattern going with the seed beads—3 grey iris, 1 oxblood, 1 gold, 2 grey iris—it's the same all the way around. And then I randomly placed the polymer, glass, and wood beads. I wanted just enough pattern to create an interesting look, but not so that it would scream it. I wanted a rustic and boho feel that looked a little aged.

The fabric strips are actually from a tee shirt that I disliked… surprised, aren't you?! Pretty colors, but it had a fake paint spattered look to it and I never wore it… but I'm all for repurposing and making old unused things into something new. :-) In thin strips it looks like artfully dyed fabric and is the perfect touch! I added in the little wire-wrapped stations, scattering a few beads here and there, and then wrapped all the cords together with the beaded strand… and ta-da! a new necklace!

It was well after midnight at that point… which explains my late post today… I hope you enjoyed seeing my new creation! Thank you Caroline, for such a beautiful challenge piece!

Be sure to take a look at what everyone else created with their own lovely moth focals!

Guest Artist:

The AJE Team:

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  1. Gorgeous necklace, I really love your wire wrapped circles and pure genius for adding your pieces of t-shirt to it for an awesome look.

  2. Such a unique and gorgeous creation, Rebekah, and I especially love (of course) the fibre additions... I guess I'll be looking through unwanted clothes next LOL.

  3. So rich with detail! I love how your autumn colors brought out the depth in the gold glaze--I'm more of an autumn person myself, and always find myself gravitating to autumn palettes no matter the time of year, so I love this! Your wrapped ring elements make me think of twigs, and the beads make me think of berries--this has a very outdoors, woodsy feel to me. Perfect for a moth who lives her life outside under the sky!

  4. Stunning Rebekah - so much texture and movement and wonderfully rich colour - beautiful.

  5. Wow - this is stunning. Those colors are so rich and the visual texture is terrific. Love it!

  6. OMG!!!!!! I am blown away!!!!!! I love the texture and color!

  7. Stunning! Love the rich textures and colours and those wrapped loops are beautiful! Thank you for joining me in the challenge!

  8. What an incredible necklace! Just love the colors and the contrast between the hard wire and the soft fabric.

  9. LOVElovelovelovelovelove this necklace!!!!!!!! How perfect, how autumn, how absolutely stunning!! The component itself is gorgeous - your treatment of it brings the entire piece to sublime. Just exquisite!

  10. I love it! So imaginative and what a lot of wire wrapping!!!!