Saturday, 15 October 2011

When you challenge yourself

Double posts today. If you're looking for sari ribbon you'll find it by scrolling down a bit, just after the mauled french wired ribbon. Or by clicking here.

So... Do you see what's in the picture above? It's black pipe cleaners, AKA chenille stems. A common craft supply, not least used by kids. So what am I doing with them? I have no idea. No idea at all. But I know it will be jewellery.

It began as it often does by me challenging myself to use some unusual or unorthodox material for my jewellery. In this case, using a very common craft supply for adult jewellery seemed like a challenge that would push me outside my comfort zone. The plan is to do real jewellery, that is: something that can be worn without looking like a masquerade piece or something your kid made you wear. I'm not talking about making crown jewels with it, but it should be wearable and tasteful.

The first hurdle was buying the supplies when on a fixed, very tight budget. They don't cost much each, but you can only buy them in bundles of at least 25 but up to 100 stems. And if you want mixed colours to avoid having to buy several packages of each colour, you get an assortment. Read: not one of the packages in the craft store had a colour mix I was pleased with. Too many of colours I don't want and too little or none of the colours I'd planned on buying. I had an idea, inspired by something I saw online, but in the end I couldn't get the right colour for it. So I went with black, figuring it's a classic, elegant colour. Surely that would make my challenge that much easier?

Well, I don't know about that. So far I haven't had even one good or even somewhat good idea since I had to scrap my inital necklace idea. (Thought I kind of like these.) I've seen pipe cleaners wrapped in ribbon or cloth and than of cause makes them look classier and more useful, but according to my challenge rules, they have to be visible. Even it it would just be an accent like e.g. in these butterflies.

Maybe I have gone in over my head here. It feels that way. But I won't give up -- and that's partially why I'm blogging about this: now that someone else know about the challenge, I can't chicken out. Right? Maybe I'm worrying too much that I'll look tacky or childish. Maybe I should just do something and then decide if it was a good idea or not. Well, when I come up with a good enough idea and create jewellery I'm not too embarrassed to show, I'll be sure to blog about it.

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