One of the bead hops I participated in this summer was the "My Country, Of Thee I Bead!" hop hosted by Nan Smith of Wired Nan. The challenge was to create a piece of jewelry based on the country of our choice. I love all things USA, so I was absolutely tickled silly to participate in this challenge.
Maybe it was growing up in the heartland, but I have always been very proud of the American Spirit. One of my very favorite things in the world is when the national anthem is being played before a ballgame. It doesn't matter if there are 20 people or 20,000 people, but when all of them stand together and stand quietly while the anthem is being performed, it gives me goosebumps every time.
I have been very into my hardware jewelry lately, so when I saw the red hardware crosses, they seemed perfect for this challenge. I wanted them to be the star of the earrings, so I added one single red, white and blue crystal as a dangling charm. They are surprisingly lightweight and really fun to wear. And I am thrilled with how they turned out.
Thank you Nan for hosting a fun challenge--I can't wait to see what everyone else created.
You can see what everyone else created by clicking on the links below.
Nan Smith (host): wirednan.blogspot.ca Canada
Dini Bruinsma: http://angazabychanges.blogspot.ca The Netherlands
Stephanie Weiss : http://uniquelymebwd.blogspot.com USA
Ana Cravidao (ACBeads) :http://acbeads.blogspot.com. Portugal
Liz E :email@example.com. USA
Vera: veradesigns.blogspot.com Germany (USA)
Andra : http://bijouxdemonange.blogspot.com Romania
Delilah: http://mssdelilah.wordpress.com Romania
Jessica Murray: http://whimsicalweavings.blogspot.com USA
Rebecca : http://www.godsartistinresidence.blogspot.ca/ France (USA)
LiliKrist: http://pcbylik.blogspot.com Indonesia
N Vakentine Studio : www.nvalentine.blogspot.com Canada
Karin: maverickbeads.blogspot.ca Calgary, Canada
Diah Anggreni : http://pernik-manik.blogspot.com Indonesia
Karen : www.overthemoon-design.com Australia
Cath Thomas : http://samohtac.blogspot.ca Switzerland
Asri Wahyuningsih : http://asribeadwork.blogspot.com USA
Crysalis Jewelry Design Denmark ( Canada)
Jasvanti Patel: www.jewelrybyjasvanti.blogspot.com USA
Lola: http://beadlolabead.blogspot.ca USA
Beccy Peterson Sweden (USA)
Paula Hisel : www.simplybeadiful.weebly.com USA
Inge von Roos: ingetraud.wordpress.com Germany
Laurie Vyselaar: Lefthandjewelry.wordpress.com. USA
Toltec Jewels: http://www.jewelschoolfriends.com USA
Anindita Basu: www.alankarshilpa.blogspot.com USA
When I started working on this challenge, I had in my mind that I was going to do a piece inspired by all of the wonderful trips my family took to the lake when we were growing up. I wanted to spend every minute possible on the water, fishing, boating, camping, spending time laughing and eating with my family--they were magical times in my life. But the more I tried to work on my piece(s), the more I struggled. I couldn't pick just one trip that was special (they were all special) so I kept putting it off, hoping the inspiration would come to me.And then, when I least expected it, I was inspired by a totally different summer trip I took in college. It wasn't a vacation. It was a summer "abroad" as a short-term missionary the summer after I graduated college. I had always wanted to live in Mexico and it took several years to convince my parents that it was safe enough, and that I was ready enough to travel outside the USA by myself.
I spent 3 long months in Juarez, Mexico living with a group of college students who loved the Lord and what we were doing just as much as I did. We built houses, ran children's programs, and built relationships with the community. One of my favorite parts of the summer was our community building time. We tried our best to get to know our neighbors, fellow church members, our water suppliers, pastors, the women who made our tortillas, the gentleman who made the best burritos, the guys who ran the hardware store...it was alot of fun. The more we got to know them, the more colorful their personalities became.
I was struck by the use of vivid color everywhere I went in Juarez. The houses, the clothes, the market, the flowers (the ones that grew in the 110 degree heat!). Everything was so bright and colorful. As I look back on it now, I realize it was probably to brighten up the dull colors of the desert.
And now a few pictures from my time in Juarez
Please make sure that you check out the other participants in our challenge by visiting their blog links:
Karin King: maverickbeads.blogspot.ca
Annette Rivers: http://mamaowlsmess.blogspot.com
Mischelle Andrade Fanucchi: micheladasmusings.blogspot.com
Leanne Loftus: https://www.firstimpressiondesign.blogspot.com
Dolores Raml: http://craftydscreations.wordpress.com/
Christie Murrow: www.charisdesignsjewelry.blogspot.com
Toltec Jewels: www.jewelschoolfriends.com
Susan Nelwon Bowie http://susanbowie.wordpress.com/
Paula Hisel: http://simplybeadiful.weebly.com/simply-stated.html
It came to my attention recently that some of my hardware jewelry has been copied by another designer without my permission. I feel the need to state the following in regards to that and my jewelry designs in general:
"All jewelry designs are my own creations. If and when i use inspiration from an outside source, it will be mentioned. I respect the hard work and talent of fellow designers and refuse to copy another designers work. If you choose to use my work as inspiration for your own work, the same courtesies would be greatly appreciated."
I take what I do very seriously and this line more than anything I have ever done is very personal to me. The thought of it being copied by others for personal gain makes me sick to my stomach. Please respect my work, as well as your own.