Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Bracelets

I'm having fun with bracelets just now.  I haven't done as much with them as I probably should have in the past for several reasons.  First of all, I don't tend to wear bracelets myself, which is probably not a good reason, but I like to wear my jewelry, and bracelets just seem to get in the way too much (and I have to admit that the 3-D-ness of my pieces tends to make them get in the way more than some other bracelets would). Second, I'm often working with repeating modules, and they tend to be big ones.  If your unit is 1" long, 
adding an extra unit or 2 will make a moderate change in a necklace but it will make a bracelet completely unwearable.  Half an inch is a big change in the length of a bracelet.
  Third reason--clasps.  I hadn't found a clasp I really liked.  I've made quite a few bracelets without a clasp, but in order not to fall off it has to be pretty tight going over your wrist to get it on, and that's a worry.  Lots of people who do work that feels similar to mine make bracelets without clasps (I'm thinking, as an example, of one of my favorite jewelry artists, Donna D'Aquino) but they're
building their structures out of soldered wire, so the strain is borne by metal.  In mine the strain is on the thread that holds the tubes together, and at some point that will be a problem.  I fix them, of course, if anything breaks, but I don't like it.
But just lately I found a clasp from Halstead Bead that I really like.  It's clean, geometric, slides right over one of my tubes and only adds about half and inch to the piece. I also found that If my "units" are based on 20mm beads, then 10 of them plus a clasp is a pretty good size.  So now I'm making bracelets.
The first one is just in here because I like it.  I'm not sure if pearls on leather cords is a big thing everywhere or just around here, but everyone has them here and I've gotten tired of them.  But those same bit hole pearls will also fit over my tubes (1.5mm diameter) and I like that use of them.  So just a simple structure  with tubes of 20 mm (on average) on the inside and longer ones on the outside.
The 2nd and 3rd bracelets come back to the issue or regular repeating designs versus irregular ones.  They're basically the same bracelet, only in one case the hexagon shapes ( actually each is made of 6 tets sharing a central hub tube) are identical and in the other they're all different.  I think I like the irregular one better, but they both seem to work.

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