This week I have been experimenting with animal prints. One of my jewelry making friends told me that prints are going to be big this Fall. I don’t know that animal prints haven’t always been pretty popular. To be honest I’ve never given them much thought before, but after playing with them this week, I am now seeing the appeal. The colours are rich, the patterns organic, and there’s something really gorgeous and tribal about the beads.
I started with making some twisties using ivory, ambers, and black and white.
The first set of beads I played around with the twisties.
The above beads used some of the simplest of the twisties (ivory and black), on light amber base, encased, with and without some dark amber splotches on the surface.
The bead above was made using an amber base, with one of the twisties that had intense black in it wrapped around the surface and melted in. It was just a little bit too dark for me although the effect was kind of cool.
I found that the simplest combination was very effective – a two part twistie of Moretti 264 Pastel Ivory and 066 Intense Black. I layered the twistie around a base of Moretti 012 Transparent Pale Amber, melted it in, encased in clear (Lauscha), and then added some random splotches of Moretti 016 Transparent Dark Topaz overtop. (This is pretty similar to the recipe for tiger beads found in Passing the Flame). I made a set of rounds and one of lentils.
Next I did some experiments with Zebra stripes. One of the interesting things about black glass is that is actually a very very dark purple. It looks black until you layer it over white. So, black stripes on a white bead is tricky to do. White on black on the other hand looks great.
The first two beads in the above photo used a black and white twistie, on a black base, encased. You can see how the purple is showing up. Not quite the effect I was going for. The beads on the right are just plain white on black, with the white stringer layed on in a random pattern. I liked these beads and I think I am going to make a full set of them in the near future.
I ended up going with a larger encased version of the bead, with the white stringer still on the top. These have a core of black, are encased in a thick layer of clear (Lauscha), and are decorated with white stringer. I love how these have kind of a three dimensional effect.
I made a set of lentils in the same combination as well.
I started playing around with Cheetah/Leopard spotted patterns next. The above two beads were some experiments with silvered ivory, intense black, and the ambers again.
The above set of beads is the combination I ended up going with. They were created with a base of Moretti 264 Pastel Ivory, encased in Moretti 012 Transparent Pale Amber, with dots of 016 Transparent Dark Topaz and 066 Intense Black.
When I went to make lentils in the same colours, I found that the intense black was webbing out too much for my liking. Some people might like this effect, but it wasn’t what I was going for. The top of the above three beads was made with regular black (Moretti 064) dots, and the other two with intense black (Moretti 066). I plan to make a full set of lentils to match the rounds, but I’m going to use the regular black instead of the intense black when I do.
Are there any other animal prints that you would love to see translated to bead form? Leave me a comment with suggestions!