Sunday, June 6, 2010

Tania's Creations

Something special for a friend who turned 40: In 2007 a friend who is sooooo stylish was about to turn 40.  I could not find the exact necklace that would suit her so I let inspiration take hold and this was the result.

She loved the design and I showed the photo to other friends who asked if I could make necklaces for them.  This encouraged me to expand my bead collection.  My children (Design Girl, Cricketer and Mini Comic) all loved the idea of mum designing necklaces - they requested that I make some for their teachers as end of year thank you gifts.

I had to source more beads and my repertoire of necklaces was expanding all over the dining table.
The designs are archived according to the date that they were made.  Have a look at the collection and see how it has changed over the years.

2007 - Life's Little Teasures - Inaugural Charity Dinner

My first real collection of necklaces was designed and created in 2007. A friend started up a charity called "Life's Little Treasures" which supports families that have a premature baby. I asked her what gift the LLT committee would be providing to the guests attending the inaugural dinner. She indicated that it would be chocolates - "nice" I said, but we need to add something groovy as a thank you to all these wonderful supporters. I suggested that I make 11 necklaces and that each table be presented with one necklace. The LLT committee placed a dot under one plate on each of the 11 tables and then the MC (Matt Tilley from FOX FM no less!!) announced that if you had a dot you also had a beautiful piece of jewellery to take home as a thank you gift. That was my gift to the LLT committee and in return I was overjoyed to meet 11 people who raved about my jewellery. One gentleman in particular was so thrilled that he would be going home from what was technically a "work" dinner with jewellery for his wife. I was overjoyed at the reaction to my jewellery.

The necklace that the gentleman raved about that I made for Life's Little Treasures inaugural charity dinner

Have a look at the rest of the collection:

This looks like licorice allsorts - it is made
with folded felt and crocheted beads

These crocheted red beads were
 so time consumming to create

Racy Red
The multicoloured creation was a big hit.
It will feature again in the 2010 collection

Tumbled blue glass and crystal resin - timeless piece

How I started my beading

As a young girl I was always playing with my Mum's button and beading boxes. I was fascinated with the colours and textures of all the different antique buttons and beads. When I was 12 years old I made a cosmetic case for my Mum and beaded her name on it. She loved it and still uses it today - 30 years later! I just kept beading and making various things.
Then in 1993 I beaded my wedding dress and the
 headbands for my bridesmaids.
 It took me 86 hours for the dress and 20 hours for the headbands.
Lucky I will only have to do that once in my lifetime!!

My beading continued and moved into areas such as my husband's pure cotton shirts which were in excellent condition except for the cuffs.  I converted them to a ladies' size and altered the cuff.  I actually wore this one for many years with a beautiful boucle black skirt.  I had 5 different styles of shirts in this beaded format.  They were YSL pure cotton.  I beaded the collars and often above the pocket section.  Here is an example of one that I kept - it is now my "official gardening shirt".  I cannot bear to part with it.

My beading took a short break during the years that my children were little - fear of them swallowing a bead or tipping over the box creating a colourful and dangerous carpet. In 2006 I was in a boutique in Melbourne looking for a gift for a friend's 40th birthday. I saw this magnificent necklace and thought that it was great but not perfect. It was that moment that I thought "I can recreate it with a twist". A visit to my local bead shop, purchased the materials, did a short course on making jewellery (ie my Mum bought me 2 books on the subject which I devoured over a weekend) and recreated the necklace. It was my first piece of jewellery.  I was so proud of myself for being inspired and improving on the design that I had seen.

From there my collection of beads has grown 10 fold. I source beads all over the world and have now branched out into making necklaces and brooches from different materials - such as fabric, coiled metal, buttons, glass and wooden beads, resin beads, and crocheted flowers.

My beading box is now multiple boxes, the dinning table, parts of the study, my bedroom, husband's side of the wardrobe etc.  Here is a small sample.

A favourite necklace made for Cricketer's teacher in 2008. 
I had a lot of spare time on my hands in the 90's