Musings On Soul Yearning, Happy Hearts and Bead Soup

“Ireland is rich in literature that understands a soul’s yearnings, and dancing that understands a happy heart.” -Margaret Jackson.

Happy, happy Irish dance. Beads from my Bead Soup Blog Party 8 partner, Marde Lowe of Columbus, OH arrived on March 17th.

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan, BSBP 8 delivery

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan, BSBP 8 delivery

The box tempted, but I managed to restrain myself long enough to snap a picture. Then, through the foam, into the plastic ware, and …shining pieces of joy, joy, joy. My bead soup.

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan, BSBP 8 soup from Marde Lowe

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan, BSBP 8 soup from Marde Lowe

Of all my treasures, the most special may be the cabochon. Marde’s note said she cut it herself. I intend to make a beadweaving of her special stone. (I know: Intentions without a planned date for action are merely dreams. )

Once I released each part of my soup from its plastic, I grouped the goodies on a bead mat by color and stone/bead type.

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan, BSBP 8 soup from Marde Lowe

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan, BSBP 8 soup from Marde Lowe

Prepared for inspiration, I’d walk by the display and move a piece. Sometimes I’d finger a special bead. I especially enjoyed the different textures: matte, shiny, thick, thin, natural, composite.

Near the end of April, I felt pulsed to action (I suspect a looming reveal date had something to do with that!) and so I drafted my necklace on the bead board. The word draft indicates an experiment. And so it was. It did not work.

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan, BSBP 8 experiment

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan, BSBP 8 experiment

Marde’s brass clasp and chain seemed perfectly paired for a necklace. Originally, I planned to use the red chips and black rounds to make charms. In a push from my comfort zone, I made my own headpins and wire wrapped six charms. Because the charms seemed stiff and too short on the necklace itself, I chose a re-do. About the same time, Lori Anderson published a blog post “Don’t be afraid of the do-over!”

Catalyzed, I chose to focus on other ideas. I turned my attention to the etched copper and blue focal included with my soup. As I considered the curved rectangular piece, (about 2.5” long x .75” wide) I dreamed of a macramé design using blue waxed linen, a copper toggle, faceted blue beads and shiny copper rounds.

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan, BSBP 8 Blue’d Copper

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan, BSBP 8 Blue’d Copper

Fun! Wearable! Blue-jean pretty-up.

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan, BSBP 8 Blue’d Copper

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan, BSBP 8 Blue’d Copper

And, the creativity didn’t end there. I was on a roll.

My second bracelet focused on three silver triangular, wedge-shaped pieces and a small strand of clear crystal quartz that had been part of my bead soup. I used an interesting silver magnetic clasp from my stash, perfect for a bracelet focal, and finished my work with accenting silver beads. A tiny silver spacer (size 11) sits between each of the clears and lets the bracelet flex easily.

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan, BSBP 8 Crystal Quartz Chunk

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan, BSBP 8 Crystal Quartz Chunk

Bracelet #3, a colorful treatment of orange and silver made itself up next. Orange, the color of adventure and social communication, can easily generate forward movement. My roll was now accelerating. The focal, a freeform wrapped silver wire bead, as well as the two large orange beads, came from Marde.

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan, BSBP 8 Adventure in Orange

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan, BSBP 8 Adventure in Orange

Whew! By now I was primed to complete my necklace. In my mind I had a clear picture of how it might look so not surprisingly, it flew together easily.

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan, BSBP 8 – Bling, Brass ‘n Black

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan, BSBP 8 – Bling, Brass ‘n Black

What do you think? Bling, Brass ‘n Black is wonderfully wearable and so spring! Thanks, Marde!

Here’s my BSBP 8 reveal summary, a collage:

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan – BSBP 8 Reveal - Summary Collage

©2014, Mary Ellen Merrigan – BSBP 8 Reveal – Summary Collage

So that’s it for me.

Head right on over to FanciMar Designs to see what Marde did with my bead soup! Tell her I sent you, too.

Bead Soup Blog Party is the brainchild of warm-hearted and talented Lori Anderson. She kindly posted a full participant list at this link: http://lorianderson-beadsoupblogparty.blogspot.com//2014/04/welcome-to-8th-bead-soup-blog-party.html

If you’d like to know more about my first Bead Soup participation and last year’s reveal, (BSBP 7) read this post or, search Bead Soup Blog Party 7 and all posts with that tag will show.

Thank you so much for stopping by my blog. Please take a moment to share your comments.

If you’d like my free e-book, “Treasure Necklace,” sign up for “Soul Juice,” my monthly newsletter about bead-related adventures. But be careful. I have to warn you that beading leads to a heart-centered, wonderfully creative place from which there’s no return. I’m living proof!

NOTE: Reveal photos courtesy Shayla Edenfield, Affordable Wedding Photography.