A chronicle of the meanderings, false starts (which in retrospect, while sort of embarrassing turned out to be highly instructive), epiphanies, selective apathy (still evolving), wild mood swings, opinions (subject to frequent change), and life lessons of an inveterate dabbler (and her latest dabblings).

Friday, October 31, 2014

African Recycled Glass Discs

My Newest Obsession
I've had a couple colors of these African recycled glass discs in my stash for quite a while but only recently became obsessed with them--it was when I saw them in a bunch more colors! And then I had to start working on having them all (my Mom is so lucky I missed the Pokemon craze). This is the color assortment I currently have, from Happy Mango Beads and Afrobeadia. They are also available in clear, dark green, pale brown, purple, cerulean, clear with gold speckles, orange, and black (and sometimes maroon). Ima need 'em all.

What I like about them is 1) they are the perfect size for anything, not too big, not too small, 2) They are lightweight, so, great for earrings, 3) The holes are plenty big so you can get lots of cording or wire through there to create sturdy links (and if you have to ream them bigger, the reamer goes through like buttah), 4) The holes are smooth so not likely to cut through your cording, and 5) They have a rustic texture, somewhat like a stone, but translucent. What's not to love?

The first thing I used them in was a bracelet (I've posted this one before):

And then I wanted to use them in earrings. Some of them had slightly smaller holes, so I had to ream them a bit to make room for the wire I wanted to use. I was pretty sure I could make it work. So I went to town and this is what I came up with:

This pair has azure discs, as well as Indonesian striped beads (this color is my absolute favorite) and blue glass rondelles, all from Happy Mango Beads. I used a little silver, and a little copper--plenty of room in the hole, after reaming a little, for a hammered 20-gauge headpin at the bottom, and two courses of 22-gauge wire at the top.
Carny Girl
This pair is all about autumn (also featured at Earrings Everyday today)--light green discs from Afrobeadia, amber glass lampwork rondelles from Happy Mango, and sterling silver torpedo beads from Monsterslayer.
Autumn Turning
This is a real southern belle pair of earrings! The colors make me think of sunny French Country decor, and the stacked tulip beads make me think of petticoats! Yellow discs from Afrobeadia, ice blue tulip beads from Happy Mango, and little turquoise glass seed beads also from Happy Mango (these little turquoise seed beads harmonize perfectly with turquoise stones, I love them). (My secondary obsession is these little African recycled glass tulip beads, also available at Happy Mango and Afrobeadia, in multiple colors--azure! purple! (oh wait, I have purple) olive green! brown! gold! orange! white! black! maroon! red! yellow! Ima need all those too.)
Alabama Petticoats
With this pair I went all earthy. I was determined to use the smoky glass discs (they remind me of smoky quartz, or even labradorate without the flash--Hey, heads up, glass disc people in Africa--AB finish on these, 'kay? They'll go like hotcakes!), and I wanted to contrast them with a warmer color, so I put them with peachy pink lampwork from The Spacer Bead Shop and copper torpedoes from Monsterslayer. These discs really make me think of sea glass, which I love.

This pair I got kind of crazy with--they're very long, like 4". I used "Mali Blue" discs (a teal blue) from Afrobeadia, carved black horn feathers, amber rondelles again from Happy Mango, and big Unicorn "Chocolate Luster" lampwork rondelles with an amber center from Stinky Dog Beads.
I'm sure I will be doing more! As well as some multicolor knotted bracelets, constructed like the one above, so stay tuned!

(Sorry, all the stuff above is sold, so I didn't include any Etsy links.)

Happy weekend to you!