Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Cool Jewels! - BCA

Last week wrapped up another amazing session with creative and engaged young artists at BCA. The week was spent in a camp called Cool Jewels! Here are some of the highlights.

Sculpey, glass, and metal beaded necklace
On the first day we used Sculpey clay to create beads and pendants, and campers tried six different techniques to layer, twist, swirl, and cut their way to a variety of shapes and colors.  The next day, after the beads had baked, the campers mixed in with glass and metal beads to create necklaces.

Artists learned to add jewelry hardware including  jumprings and clasps
As Burlington is home to the amazing artist Marie Davis, who works in polymer clay, several of these campers were familiar with her work and has a vision for what they wanted to create. Trying to make something beautiful out of this material gives a fresh appreciation for the stunning talent Davis has to create work that looks like this:

Whoa. Fer serious, not in this lifetime could I make anything even close.

I came armed with a list of things to make a mile long, but since we had just fifteen hours together, I let the campers choose the projects that most appealed to them. The next project they selected was to make paper bead earrings. Making these is simple process which begins with upcycling old magazines into tiny rolled and glued beads. The beads could be used ot make both traditional or clip-on earrings.  Behold!

They even put little bells of beads at the bottom, so some of the pairs ring softly as the wearer walks around.
Since it was hot last week, and all of the kids wanted to take off their shoes, we made barefoot sandals.  Essentially, these are fancy little anklets joined to a toe loop, so they appear like the top of a flip flop. Perfect for running around in beach sand or soft grass.

These are pretty simple to create, and all of the ladies got into making several pairs, some matched, some purposely mismatched.

Some of the artists wanted the beads to go higher up on the front of the foot, and to branch around into two separate beaded strands, as you can see below. For these we added a clasp at the back, since they couldn't be removed otherwise.  All these are is hemp string with a variety of beads. Make yourself a pair!

The girls wanted to make big wooden bangles similar to what my DIY Accessories campers made, but with the spin of adding more color with paint pens after the masking and spray painting.

Using rhinestones formed into lengths of cupchain in white, pink, and turquoise, we made some sparkly and funky headbands. First, wrap and hot glue a layer of satin ribbon, and then wrap embroidery floss over the cupchain to hold it in place.

Other headbands included duct-tape bows...

 and fabric flowers.

Campers made "statement necklaces," and thought about how what they wear can communicate parts of their personality to others. Fierce, chic, dainty, bold... they got the idea quickly, and after some reflection, made stunning pieces like this:

So cool and hip.
It's amazing how stylish these campers are, and how some of them have such clear taste at such a young age. This was evidenced by how, at the end of the week, their collections were unique and well-coordinated.

The collection of an eight-year-old artist

Next week will be a dramatic change of pace for the summer, when I will be teaching a DIY Robots art class, blending subjects and skills. Can't wait! Hope you are enjoying the sunshine.

The plentiful and colorful treasures of a rainbow-and-unicorn-loving young lady.

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