Mokume Gane Earrings

I know, I know. I should be packing and getting ready for my trip. I decided to take a break and do something creative so I finished these earrings. Now I can bring them with me on my trip.

A couple of weeks ago I created a polymer clay mokume gane stack and started playing around with different shapes for jewelry components. Today I glued in some wires, fashioned some earring hooks from 20-gauge S.S. wire and these earrings were born.

I’m experimenting with weaving seed beads around polymer clay components. I especially like the freeform designs of mokume gane to go with freeform beadwork. My most successful color combinations have been when I’ve incorporated light, medium and dark colors. It’s fun looking around the house for various tools and objects to impress into the clay stack. Just mix your colors, create individual sheets, layer them to make a stack and then texture with your found objects. Using a tissue blade, slice from the top of the stack to reveal the patterns. I love watching the patterns emerge. You can make a “fabric” by laying the slices on a coordinating color sheet of clay. I like to take that sheet and run it through the pasta machine to stretch out the patterns so they swirl and dance around.

Ok, back to packing!

Saturday Morning Tea

The white blanket sky gives me the feeling of being enclosed in a light tent as it gently illuminates our back deck and garden, bringing the gorgeous color of this morning’s tea leaf into sharp saturation. I’m sipping an African black tea from the Malaika estate in Kenya. The word Malaika means “angel”.

The leaf is dark with a minimum of tip and an aroma of sweet chocolate drifted up when I first opened the pouch. The steeped liquor is a deep reddish brown after 5 minutes in boiling water. The taste is hearty and slightly astringent with a hint of malt and a sweet lingering finish.

Tea has been grown in Kenya for about 100 years with a surge in the last 10-15 years that has brought it to be one of the world’s largest tea producers. You can read more about it here.

Yesterday my company closed for its annual shutdown so I am on vacation for the next 9 days. My parents have invited me down to the Jersey shore again where they have rented a condo right on the beach. Lovely! So, tomorrow morning I head out for the 5 hour trip down to the Shore. As I don’t have a laptop computer, I won’t have any computer access while I’m down there for the week. As I’m on a computer all day at my job, it will be a blessed break away from the electronic world. I’ll return next Saturday afternoon so my morning tea will be postponed until the following day, Sunday July 8th. I’m bringing my camera with me so I’ll have lots of pictures to share of my adventure when I return home.

I hope everyone has a safe and happy holiday week!