Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Finding Closure

I was so excited when the group decided on CLASPS as the topic for this next Boot Camp.  Early on in my beading career, I fell in love with the idea of making rather than buying the closures for my jewelry pieces.  In bead weaving, as with probably most other jewelry art forms, these clasps can go from simple, utilitarian closures to elaborate focal points which also happen to serve as clasps.

I thought I'd give you a brief tour of some of the places bead woven closures have gone at Sand Fibers, starting with the super simple hematite chip I used as a button substitute on one of my very first bracelets.

Moving on to the peyote tube toggle bars I use on most of my peyote cuffs, some of which are quite simple in design

others of which echo the pattern in the cuff in order to blend in which the overall design, a form of bead camouflage

If you've followed my work, you probably know that I can become obsessive about peyote triangles. I've created them as pendants for necklaces, but I also love using the "open" version of them as part of "toggle" focal point closures for cuffs and bracelets, as you can see in these examples.

Necklaces provide a wonderful opportunity for bead woven clasps as well, going from the simple to the extremely elaborate, depending on what the piece calls for.  This is the beaded rope for my You Are My Sunshine necklace, designed to feature a pendant with a Lisa Peters Art cabochon I bezeled but versatile enough to wear on its own with the closure becoming a focal.

One of the things I learned from that particular closure was that symmetry and balance are a good thing. Were I to make it again, I would probably have a matching "toggle" on the other side, as I did for this elaborate piece, made in collaboration with the mosaic artist Eve Lynch

And I can't leave without showing you the closure I am probably most proud of, the one for Where There's Smoke There's Fire

The clasp provided the "fire" in this piece, while the smoke-fired beads by Artisan Clay provided the focal "smoke."

I hope this has tempted you to consider bead weaving as an option in creating your next clasp.

Be well and get going!
Carol Dean


Sally Anderson said...

I'd love to see a tute for that last clasp. It's gorgeous and I have no idea how you could have done it. Your closures always morph beautifully into whatever they're closing and I love that a lot!!

stacilouise said...

LOVE how you camouflaged the clasp one on. I think you are a clasp master, because they always accent or make the piece you create perfectly!

Valorie said...

So beautiful! I particularly love the genius of the camouflaged toggle. Pretty, pretty!

Artisan Beads Plus said...

Wow, that's amazing! I agree with Staci.... you are the clasp MASTER!!!

LisaS said...

Awesome clasps. The last one, Smoke and Fire, would never even know it is a clasp it is so pretty. Would love to see how it works, hope that perhaps you will share in a future update ;)

Caron Michelle said...

Fabulous reading, thank you for sharing your talents with us, I too love the "Where There's Smoke There's Fire" clasp - what a gorgeous way to finish a design!

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