Bead a Freeform Necklace Theme

A friend challenged me to produce something related to the theme, “Inner Spirit.”

I immediately laid out six or seven cabochon ideas.

Why not? Freeform beadweaving indulges your inner spirit. I planned to play.

Part of my craft involves letting an idea percolate. Three months later…

©2013, Mary Ellen Merrigan, Bronze Bling Beadweaving

What you see is the finished expression of indulgence number one.

Bronze Bling encapsulates my love of black, bronze and metallic browns.

The centerpiece, a triangular polished onyx cabochon commands attention.

Above it, a vintage brass plate, formerly an earring, serves as a host for the spot of color, a brass-wrapped piece of coral.

Various black, brass brown and bronze seed beads weave in and out of the center trio and provide the background for the drop. A few bits of dulled silver add depth and contrast.

Short dangles finish the look with whimsy, conveying movement. In a surprise coordinating color element, pieces of coral peek out from amidst the other beads in the dangles.

The backing of black ultrasuede features my signature finishing touches: two charms – a cherub archer, a butterfly – and my Mary Ellen Beads logo.


©2013, Mary Ellen Merrigan, Bronze Bling Beadweaving-reverse side

I married the beadweaving to a 34” bronze chain that perfectly complements its rectanglular appearance.

Finished, the necklace hangs 38 inches and looks great with this season’s leggings and tunics.

Is this a throwback to flapper days? Maybe.

From start to finish, I seldom know for sure how a project will turn out. I only know that indulging my inner spirit requires letting go of expectations and just flowing with it.

That’s the “soul” of beading.

©2013, Mary Ellen Merrigan, Inner Spirit Designs-in-Progress

With that in mind, these are three of my “inner spirit” designs-in-progress.

Can you envision their final presentation?