Sunday, September 10, 2017

The Courage and Creativity Necklace

Earlier this summer UK Bead and Jewellery magazine published my courage and creativity necklace.  I wanted to share it with you on my page as well.  They did such a wonderful job photographing and showcasing my necklaces.  I couldn't be more proud.
Courage and Creativity Necklace

With the arrival of summer there are numerous concert and weekend events that generate image after image of bohemian and vintage style dressing.  The looks often feature hand crafted clothing and jewelry with a spiritual influence.  The jewelry is both authentic yet stylized and I made an effort to figure out why I liked it so much.  It was at this point I heard the word “mala” for the first time.

The mala bead necklace is based on traditional Buddhist prayer beads.  “Malas are used for keeping count while reciting, chanting, or mentally repeating a mantra or the name or names of a deity.  Malas are typically made with 18, 27, 54 or 108 beads.  A decorative tassel is often attached to the beads, flanked by talismans or amulets depending on one’s local tradition.”  Via Wikipedia

Since Mala bead necklaces are considered a Buddhist rosary I wanted to acknowledge that I was aware that these necklaces have spiritual importance to many people.  The necklaces I started making are influenced by the symmetry in the traditional mala necklace.   I have gone out of my way to create a necklace with an even number of beads that is not a real mala.   I also wanted to spend more time learning about semi precious stones and why so many people use them as part of their daily rituals.
There are many wonderful ideals associated with a Mala necklace.  There are also many wonderful properties associated with semi-precious gems and crystals.  The more you learn about crystals, the more confidence you will have in selecting beads to create with and wear. If you would like to create your own mala necklace, learning about both will help you to make a necklace that holds a great deal of personal meaning.
My symmetrical necklace features the semi precious stone carnelian in a round bead shape.  Making and then wearing a piece of jewelry with a gemstone you select based on its healing or helpful properties will give you a great deal of pleasure. 
In the Crystal Bible I discovered some of the carnelian stone’s many attributes.  “Carnelian grounds and anchors you in the present reality. A stabilizing stone with high energy, it is excellent for restoring vitality and motivation, and for stimulating creativity. It also gives courage, promotes positive life choices, dispels apathy, and motivates for success in business and other matters. Carnelian improves analytic abilities and clarifies perception.”   

I think we can all use a little more courage and any extra creative energy I might derive is truly welcome.

Step by Step

This necklace requires no tools!  Just the ability to count to ten and sew your beads together with a silk cord that already has an attached needle.  It is long enough to pass over a head, so no clasps are required.

You will need:
2 Strands of Semi Precious Carnelian Beads (50 beads per strand) 27600623-02
10 Fire Polished 8mm Lantern Beads Crystal/Copper 27001615-01s
1 Agate Slab (Brown for this project) 27602500-00
1 Dazzle-It 100% Silk Bead Cord (Available in six colors) 74422068-03 

To begin count your beads into piles of ten.

If you work better seeing everything laid out you can also set up a bead board with your beads.  The fire polished lantern bead is used as a pretty spacer.  There are so many options available for anyone with a bit of a bead stash.

If you work better seeing everything laid out you can also set up a bead board with your beads.  The fire polished lantern bead is used as a pretty spacer.  There are so many options available for anyone with a bit of a bead stash.

String the first side of the necklace.
1 Crystal lantern Bead + 10 Carnelian Beads (repeat five times)

When one side of your necklace is done you need to think about your pendant.  I used a slice of agate, which was easy to attach with a jump ring.  You could add the jump ring later but I like to add it now so I know the jump ring is settled into place.  If you are not sure what you would like to attach add a jump ring anyway.  You can always attach the pendant to it later.

The first half of the necklace is done.  Match the first side now by following this reminder:
10 Carnelian Beads + 1 Crystal lantern Bead (repeat five times)

Make sure both sides of your necklace are the same and then tie a good knot!  If you want to keep your knot secure you can add a dab of glue.  Also, if you do not want to see the knot you can cover it with a crimp cover.

All you need to do now is enjoy wearing this necklace or perhaps gift it to a friend.  I fully expect to feel a little more courageous wearing it because I will wear it on the day I need to make a big presentation at work.  It will be a constant and comforting reminder.

Here is the exact same necklace made with amethyst stones.
Amethyst is said to be extremely beneficial to the mind, calming or stimulating as appropriate.  Amethyst enhances memory and improves motivation, making you more able to set realistic goals.

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