Wednesday, May 14, 2014

The beginning of something new :)

The Battle Of The Beadsmith started, and after some whining about too much work and no spare time I decided, I will give it a go. And so far I am really happy with the decision. As you can see from the previous posts, travelling to far-away places and experiencing different cultures drive me to new ideas in jewelry-making. In 2013 after visiting Sri Lanka the bead-embroidered vest, Serendib was born. Earlier this year I visited the island of Borneo, and well, it gave me and idea or two :) 

So far I would like to show some pictures, so you can get the hang of it: the rich, wild vegetation, the deep, blue sea, and, of course, the tradition of headhunting.

And a sneak peak of the jewel itself:

Saturday, May 10, 2014

The Team :)

Before I move on to something new, I would like to share with you some last (but very important) thoughts about "Project Serendib": I would like to introduce you the great team behind the scenes, who helped me to present the vest, and would like to say a big, loud THANK YOU to all of them!

First of all, my model, who is also a very good friend (and a teacher in my bead shop :), Zuzi Hake from Zzuzzi Handmade. I first  met her husband, who came to the shop, I think, four years ago, to enroll Zuzi in our workshops as a surprise. Well, she came, and stuck around from that time :)
Zuzi's main focus is on steampunk jewelry, made from Swarovski Elements and vintage clock parts. I have a whole collection from her, and I love every one of them! However, if I have to choose, my most favourite is her The Beatles Collection:

Zuzi also loves beadweaving and bead embroidery. She is really patient with tiny seed beads, but also likes to work with shiny crystals. Lately she started to experiment with Shibori ribbons, and I must say, it turned out more than well :) 

You can admire her creations here:

This year she participates in the Battle of the Beadsmith. I had the chance to see a detail from her work, and I am really looking forward to see the finished piece! Please don't forget to check it out after 6th of June!

The headpiece Zuzi was wearing was made by Slávka from HogoFogo. Her dreamy headpieces, full of flowers make you feel like a feary, even on a gloomy day.

Check out Slávka's creations on Facebook or in her SaShE-store!

The photos were taken by my friend, Orhan, who is the husband of my former classmate from high school, Szilvia. With Szilvia we have a long and funny history together (even sharing a flat for a time), and I am really glad, that the four of us together with my Adam get along so well. It's a shame we don't see each other so often any more!
Orhan presents his pictures on his FB page OrhanCa Photography. There are everyday objects between his favourite theemes, and on Orhan's pictures they allways seem to be more then what they are - sometimes filled with an affection you don't expect from a cable, sometimes showing an unexpected or funny side.

Portraits are also quiete regular between his pictures: the happy and content face of a child, the wiseful, warm eyes of an elderly woman have the same message: life can be beautiful!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

The very beginning :)

1st of April was a big day for beaders all over the world: the Battle of The Beadsmith '14 started. Shame on me, it is already time to create something new, and I still haven't told you everything about my last year's entry either (not to mention other stuff I managed to design AND finish during the past months). First thing first, here and now I would like to show you some sketches which later evolved into Serendib.

The notebook is a simple A5 I picked up at the local convenience store in Anuradhapura. It was made specifically for Sri Lankan children learning to read and write: the hard cover shows the Sinhala, English and the Tamil alphabet. Tamil is a minority in Sri Lanka, they make up about 11-12 percent of the entire populatin. The civil war between the two ethnic groups ended just five years ago, in 2009, after getting rid of the separatist group LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam). After the long-lasting massacre spotted with suicidal attacks, the government realised, that the best way to bring closer Sinhalese and Tamil people is to get to know each other's culture. Not only the Sinhala language is teached in the minority schools, but Tamil is also mandatory for every child in the country. The reality is unfortunately a bit stuck up after this nice thought, but it is a good beginning at least. 

It still seems so unrealistic, how easily the idea came and changed to the final stage. Sure, I had to simplify it because of the pressing time-limit, but everything, the colours, the shapes, the materials came to me without stress and frustration. 
Unfortunately, this year's BOTB is quiete different...

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

New pictures, new e'lan

I really wanted to write a new post here regularly, but somehow I ended up with just four of them so far, the last one dating from June 2013. That doesn't mean I wasn't around beads any more, or that I didn't make anything new in the meantime. On the contrary, a big change in my work-environment helped me to dedicate more time to beading, and quiete a few designs were born. However, before showing you the newborns, I would like to continue with my good ol' vest Serendib, because there are so many stories untold about it.

I must confess, that against the fact, that all the previous posts are about the Big Battle, I don't really like competitions. Working on a tight schedule is definitely not for me, and even worse is, that I tend to work simultaneously on more projects (and then from time to time even finish one :), and I couldn't do that this time, because I wouldn't finish my battle piece until the deadline. 
Against the above mentioned, I am really happy I participated. I was forced to leave my comfort zone, hence mostly I make jewelry which is suitable for every casual day. Serendib is different: even I say it is for special occasions only, and believe me, my borderline between wearable and not has somehow shifted over the last years. The other thing I had to overcome was the pure hatred to make something monotonous, to repeat a simple task again and again. Sometimes I struggle even when I make earrings. Now, that the battle is over, even I can't believe, I bezeled 191 + 12 + 6 + 12 cabochons with peyote, using only two colors of Miyuki beads, sewed more than 2 m of cupchain on ultra suede, and used I don't dare to count how many fire-polished beads in the same color and same size.
Before applying for a possibility to participate, I told myself, I'm gonna be happy, if my name appears on the list. It did indeed, and I was jumping all over our house at six o'clock in the morning. (Hb was really happy about it, too. Especially about the jumping...) Then after calming down, I was hoping I will get past at least of the first round, but when the pairings were made, I knew I will fly in the first round. It seemed so easy to say and understand, but then it definitely wasn't the happiest moment in my life when it came true. Anyway, congratulations to the incredibly creative Csilla Papp, she really deserved to move forward with her magnificent soutache neckpiece, and it was an honour to meet her at least virtually.

Fortunately the "mourning time" happened to be quiete short, and I was up to a new beginning. What started with my new brand La Peregrina and my new logo, continued with finding a professional photographer. So I contacted my ex-classmate from university, Matej Hutta, who after our studies of Aesthetics started to work as a freelance-photographer. He shoots mostly jewellry (lucky me!), and some portraits occasionally. He was up to the job, and we are nicely cooperating from that time :)

So now I would like to show you some pictures he took about Serendib.
Please make sure to check out his pictures on FB: Matej Hutta photography.