I just completed my favorite-ever-so-far project for my lovely friend, Karen. It is a beautiful tribute to the dogs in her life, and I couldn't be happier with how sweet it turned out. It is too long for my little photography set-up, so I had to take photos with it all bunched together. Hopefully, these photos will give a sense of the grandeur of this necklace. This is a mix of silver, brass, and copper, with beautiful Ocean Jasper beads. The main center piece reads: "While each dog that passes from my life takes a piece of my heart, each new dog gives me a piece of theirs."
The back reads: "Dogs are not my whole life, they make my life whole." There are 17 little doggie tags throughout this necklace, one for each of the dogs she has ever had. Karen even adopted #17 midway through the project, so of course, now I am scheming how to add #18 and so on in the future . . .
Karen approached me a couple of months ago with the idea for this necklace. She couldn't sleep until she had drawn it out and turned it over to me to work on. I know that feeling - sometimes that's how creativity works . . . it's like a living thing that needs to be cared for. This necklace took a certain kind of energy and momentum to build. I searched out just the right beads to be earthy and tie the three metals together. Karen knew exactly what she wanted in her head and she drew it out perfectly but it took me a little while and a few "meetings of the minds" for me to really catch her vision for this necklace and how exactly to construct it. Boy, am I glad I did!
This close-up shot of the pendant shows my favorite kind of attachment. It is a hammered and riveted wire bail that I learned from Susan Lenart Kazmer's class during the Tucson Gem Show back in 2009. Karen even agreed to let me take a photo of her wearing her new necklace. This is headless Karen, standing in my studio: