Wednesday, 14 July 2010


Just thought I'd show you this, a bracelet inspired by late summer and autumn when the rowan trees begin to turn from just green to a lovely green and orange-red as the berries ripen.

I entered this into one of the monthly challenges at the UK Beaders Forum. The theme that month was Harvest Festival and I couldn't really think of that time of year without thinking of rowanberries, eventhough I myself prefer just watching them, not using them in bread or jelly. I liked the result and it seems others did to as I was graced with winning the challenge (you can see part of the stuff I bought with the gift certificate from Jencel here).

I'm constantly interested in trying new beads, materials and techniques. The rowanberry bracelet is an example of just that, inspired by Melody MacDuffee's graceful, filigree-like twisted wire jewellery. My personal style, though diverse, tends to lean towards the romantic with inspiration from nature and old fairy tales or mythology. Two great sources of constant inspiration. Again, my bracelet is a good example not only of how nature inspires me, but how I keep associate my jewellery with natural features. It was not intended to look like clusters of rowanberries, but when I saw the bracelet forming in my hands I soon realised it looked just like the branches of all those trees I'd been watching since late August, when the berries really were more orange than red.

It was just pure chance that I hade used the silver-lined burnt orange seeds and that orange coloured copper wire. I actually chose them for my first try to make a MacDuffee-inspired bracelet as I felt it was two colours I rarely use and wouldn't mourn too much if they where spent. So I took the two colours of wire and beads I felt I could use without feeling bad about it if it didn't turn out well. And then it just happened to turn into something I feel very special about. While it might not look like rowanberries in trees to everyone it does to me. It was something special about the colours, exactly matching the shade I'd recently seen in the trees while spending the last real summer days picking potatoes. Those beautiful rowan trees that I can find everywhere here. By the road, in the meadows amongs the juniper and rocks and in the groves. It was a special nuance and once I had begun thinking how much the bead and wire colour resembled the rowanberries, I couldn't see anything but them in the bracelet growing inch by inch between my hands.

PS! The bracelet is also featured in the UK Beaders blog where you can read a little about both me and the bracelet.


  1. I like the rowan berries! So light and airy. It does look like nature and the wire work looks attractive. I love trees and it is hard to get jewelry that has the feel of a tree. This does that while staying romantic. Inspiring.

  2. Thank you!

    I think I should be taken more inspiration from trees. Often flowers and other more dainty plants get most of my attention, while all those beautiful trees are just, well, over-looked. They're so big, I guess I sometimes forget to lift my head and really look at them or the colours are just like a backdrop against the more variegated florals. And that said, I do love trees and take photos of them every now and then: the ash trees, horse chestnut, birches, oaks, maples, rowans, alder, aspen, cherry trees, apple trees. It's not just trees, each variety has its characteristics: leaf shape, the shape of the tree itself, colour and texture of the bark, leaf colours -- and as wood, the different colours, grain and scents. So many things to explore, discover and be inspired by, both as an object to look at and as a material to use.


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