Fetching Focals Make up Fast and Slow

Mary T. wore the perfect outfit to showcase this necklace.

©2013, Mary Ellen Merrigan, “The Green Decollete”

©2013, Mary Ellen Merrigan, “The Green Decollete”

During her visit to my studio she tried on several necklaces, but this one was the fav!

Appropriately nicknamed “The Green Decollete,” this short necklace is made to be worn tightly around the neck. The five strands (actually, two different necklaces – the focal single and a topper of four strands) feel nicely balanced and definitely make a statement.

©2013, Mary Ellen Merrigan, “The Green Decollete” - focal necklace

©2013, Mary Ellen Merrigan, “The Green Decollete” – focal necklace

©2013, Mary Ellen Merrigan, “The Green Decollete” - choker

©2013, Mary Ellen Merrigan, “The Green Decollete” – choker

Some might say this beadweaving project waited for the right opportunity to show itself. The stone hung, only partially finished with two rows of beading, by my workbench for more than a year.

One day I developed a knowing about how the finished necklace might look. In a matter of hours, I wove small green pearls from a recent purchase and ruby zoitsite rounds from my stash into the border.

A fabulous strand of jasper pulled the everything together quickly.

©2013, Mary Ellen Merrigan, “The Green Decollete”

©2013, Mary Ellen Merrigan, “The Green Decollete”

Still, “The Green Decollete” is a slow focal creation.

I find if something’s out of sight, it’s frequently out of mind. So I almost always keep several pieces “in process.” Here are three projects currently near my bench awaiting inspiration.

On the other hand, sometimes an elaborate focal goes together quickly.

I instantly loved the flower.

©2013, Mary Ellen Merrigan, “The Flower"

©2013, Mary Ellen Merrigan, “The Flower”

 

Its stamen (those slender, stem-like filaments in the center) seemed quite life-like and the tiny bulbs on the end of each filament inspired me to choose a similar shape for spacer beads.

©2013, Mary Ellen Merrigan, “The Flower"

©2013, Mary Ellen Merrigan, “The Flower”

The Flower’s fabulous center further inspired the colors I chose. Faceted fushia glass beads added a girly elegance to the finished piece. After all, pink is the original “girl” color.

Clear faceted quartz picked up a slight glimmer from the neighboring beads and the red soft-flex wire. Total time, design to completion for The Flower: less than an hour.

Obviously, flowers and glass goes in the fast classification.

Could your time in the studio be determined by the focal you pick? Or, does a background amount of thinking time figure into your creation?

Some might say creativity itself dictates the pace. What do you think?