Thursday, November 11, 2010

The Elizabethan Sea Slug - A Sneak Peek

"Oh my, that's a really odd name for a piece of jewelry, don't you think?"

Yep. But let me explain. In seeking to extend my new netted rope passion a bit into the extreme end of things, I tried a much larger bead as a central anchor. In fact, I started with some sponge coral beads that are about 16 -18mm. These things are huge!

Then I netted with 11/0 crystal beads and some silver-plated 6/0 beads. Well, as anyone who has tried this technique can tell you, it eats the core beads like crazy. Four beads for every round, and since they're solidly packed together, each round is only half a bead tall. 

So I decided after four rounds of the 16mm sponge coral to reduce the size with some 12mm sponge coral beads. Those I used 3 rounds on each side. Then I reduced further with some 8mm onyx beads. Three rounds of those on each end. 

At this point, the piece was lying on my work table while I considered the next step. The shape and size reminded of a beautiful sea slug.

Sea slugs or nudibranchs, are some of the most gorgeous creatures on the face of the earth. I may end up doing a whole series of pieces inspired by the many species. Some of them are so spectacular they look like they were made up by graphic designers who have been enhancing their creativity with recreational chemicals.  I mean, does this one look real to you?

The netted texture made me think of an Elizabethan (or Tudor) jeweled hair snood. Elizabethan Sea Slug. See, it makes perfect sense. Sort of. 

Now I'm extending the tube with peyote, and starting a spiral of two colors. I have plans for further enhancements as well.  And I had a grand time and gained immense inspiration seeking the images to add to this post. The Sea Slugs images are copyrighted by their owners, I'm just borrowing them.  Sea slug inspired jewelry, coming up.

Extreme Netted Rope. Perhaps a new Olympic event?


  1. I think I might have mentioned in my original email that this technique is addictive. If I didn't, well, sorry! :)

    I love the contrasts you have going in your new pieces.


  2. Love it! I can't wait to see the finished piece!