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Build a Line Challenge 2016 - The Journey Begins

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Photography of Chihuly Glass Works by Chris Cravens 
As you can readily see by my intro photo, I adore color. Why in the world did I choose white as a theme for my new jewelry line???
I am honored to be a participant in B'Sue Boutique's 2016 Build a Line Challenge (BALC). The BALC is a three-month intensive study I'm sharing with 36 students in which each of us will develop a cohesive line. Each month, we will be presenting blog hops (today is the first, the following dates are February 26 and April 1) with a final reveal of our entire line in the last one. Thus far, my experience in BALC 2016 has been a blessing for not only my jewelry business, but in my life as a whole. For the very first time, I began to look at the work of my hands as 'art' instead of 'just stuff I make.' While I am fairly new to the idea of putting a piece of jewelry together, I have been working with my hands for a very long time in various media such as photography, fiber, and even creating documents for my job as a business analyst.

Finding My Style

Favorite Pieces in My Personal Antique Jewelry Collection
Having a limited amount of jewelry I have actually made, I began looking for things that spoke to me from my own collection of vintage/antique jewelry. As I went through this exercise, I began to notice I am drawn to deep, rich colors and patterns frequently found in nature evidenced by my selection of favorite pieces. Clockwise from the top left: an Art Nouveau era belt buckle featuring blue glass cabochons set in acorns and leaves, an Art Deco era blown glass necklace, an Art Deco era butterfly wing brooch by Thomas Mott and, finally, an Edwardian era brooch featuring amethysts and pearls. Out of these, my absolute favorite is the Thomas Mott pin because the artist captured a fairy-tale like forest with such precision. It makes me feel as though I am able to step through the rock crystal covering and take a journey there.  
A Collection of My Craft
For the very first time, I took an objective look at several things I have made over the last year or two and it hit me: I have an artistic voice that is all my own. I am definitely influenced by lines and color such as those found in Victorian era movements like Art Nouveau, Impressionism and Aestheticism. This is no surprise to me as I have a long love of the outdoors and just being outside to admire God's handiwork.  

My BALC 2016 Theme - All Jeweled in White

Prior to beginning BALC 2016, each student was required to select a theme within which to develop our line. With my love of deep color and comfort level of working with it, this particular BALC is an extra challenge for me. Why? Because the theme I selected for this year is 'All Jeweled in White!' White can be done in so many beautiful ways - crisp and modern, cottage chic and beachy styles are great examples I'm fond of. My style? I think of an Edwardian-era store with deep ivory plaster walls, rich wood counters and a gilt cash register. Glossy champagne pearls, dark patinas and complex designs will bring this feeling to my new line. All Jeweled in White is contemporary line with a nod to the past to compliment VintageCravens authentic vintage and antique jewelry.

Where It All Comes Together - My Workshopish Studio

I've been busy in my workshopish studio as this line is beginning to come together. I'm thrilled to see where the next couple of months will take me as we continue on the journey and look forward to watching my classmates grow on their journey as well. I've included links to their blogs below and highly recommend checking them out.
Oh Happy Day!
Chris

BALC 2016 Blog Hop

Be sure to visit the talented students in the BALC 2016 class. I am amazed at the amount of work these talented ladies have been able to accomplish in such a short amount of time.
 
  

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