13 February 2009

Flowers, Flowers, Everywhere

In real life I have an utter passion for hydrangeas. They remind me of my very first trip to England, where after days of travelling I finally arrived to my destination in Cornwall. Clinging to rocky ledges that threatened to tumble at any moment to the sea, were a profusion of giant wonderfully bluey-purple hydrangeas.

In my jewelry designs I have fallen in love with first pressed glass flowers, and then lucite, and now I have discovered that silk flowers look quite wonderful turned into jewelry pieces.

I had found some teeny lucite hydrangea cabochons for purchase, but with the cost of shipping from overseas, I decided that the cost was a little high for my liking. But I could not stop thinking about hydrangea blooms.

Further online searches for the same lucite blooms led, not to additional suppliers of the same pieces, but instead to scrapbooking supplies. A vendor had some very pretty blooms for sale, and I thought they would look very pretty all layered together. So off I went to some local craft stores and I discovered that most of the scrapbooking supplies, though beautiful, are also paper based. That was going to be an issue, as my original plan for the blooms was to turn them into hairclips. Caught in a sudden down-pour, paper blooms will likely melt. Not exactly what I would want to see happen.

So I trotted over to the silk flower section where bucket after bucket of hydrangea blooms were waiting for me to scoop them up. There was such an array of colours to choose from but I finally settled on four different heads that each had their own unique, antiqued feel to them. They looked as hydrangea do as the winter comes on and they lose most of their colour; when the tawny hue of hibernation creeps in, the colour they possessed while in their full summer glory gets pushed off to the edges where it fades with time. These were perfect; as I imagined Cornwall must look in November.

Once I got them home, I pulled some of the heads apart, plucking the colours that I thought would most pleasingly blend together. I layered them, adding adhesive between the layers, just in the centre so that the flower will still flutter as in nature. Something was missing. I had hoped to find some flat back rhinestones that I know linger somewhere from projects past, but I had no luck. Then opening a box of neglected sewing supplies, I can upon some sweet metallic pink sequins and I knew that I had what I needed. I added one to the centre as the final touch, and voila, a perfectly pretty posie for the hair. While digging I also discovered some lovely coloured bobby pins, so the flower got attached to a lovely fuchsia pin instead of just plain old black or silver. I think it has a little extra zing that way.

I sat back and looked at my hairpin. I was so happy with it. And then while I was smiling at it, it occurred to me that this bloom would make just as lovely a pendant, and I had the absolutely most perfect components at hand to finish one for use as such. I hastily put another flower together and affixed it to the necessary component. Pretty!

I expect to be listing these on etsy very soon.

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