I prefer winter and Fall, when you feel the bone structure of the landscape — the loneliness of it, the dead feeling of winter. Something waits beneath it, the whole story doesn’t show. ~Andrew Wyeth

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Well, miracle of miracles, I finally finished something.

Here is a dirty little secret about me. I'm notorious for starting a project and not finishing it. I can't tell you how many knitted, fabric and felted things sit in a box or container waiting for completion. How many unfinished pieces of jewelry and well thought out craft projects sit in bags in my closet. I'm the queen of incompleteness, the CEO of corporate level shortfall. I love the process but I'm not a finisher. Unless there's a deadline or someone says, "Bring the project we started last month for show and tell.." or "What price would you like to put on this piece." Then I'm all about game plans, procedures, stratagem or plot line.
So...
The fact that I sat down and finished one of two necklaces that my SCAT group worked on over the last two months is a 'you know what' miracle... and I did this without a deadline or being paid.
I still have another to finish, but I'm very happy with this one.
So, without further ado, I want to show you my necklace.... against the background of Buddha who said,
 “Having gone on his almsround, the sage should then go to the forest, standing or taking a seat at the foot of a tree. The enlightened one, intent on jhana, should find delight in the forest, should practice jhana at the foot of a tree, attaining his own satisfaction.”
Oh, I'm sorry... that doesn't really have anything to do with my finished necklace... will maybe a little... I just like what it says.

So... without further ado...
This is the finished necklace. I made it out of Fimo clay. I rolled the clay out flat using a pasta maker. Then I cut out the shape I wanted and added other pieces to the base. The base was stamped with a leaf pattern before I baked it.
Buddha did says, "You yourself must strive.The Buddhas only point the way." So I did. 
After the pieces were baked, the fun began. I used a technique that I learned using layers of paint in a workshop with Michael deMeng.  This technique teaches you how to distress and alter anything, make it look old, and replicate stone. After I added layers of color, I scratch the dry clay lightly with a wire brush.

I had added some of the coral pieces that I brought back from Maui last year. They added the perfect touch to the dark background... as if they were still lying in the sand on the beach.

I found a chain at Walmart, for $3.33, that fit through the top. 
The hardest part was connecting the two pieces with thread and needle. The holes were made before the clay was baked, but getting the thread to hang right and not too tight was difficult. There must be an easier way to do this.
I'm not sure if I want to spray a protective coating over the whole necklace or not. I don't want any shine but I do want to keep the finish safe from chipping.
As Buddha says, "“Ardently do today what must be done. Who knows? Tomorrow, death comes.”
I know... that's a little heavy handed for a blogpost about a necklace, but I'm never going to finish all the projects I have around here. I need to tidy things up, throw some things out or give them away and "ardently do what must be done" to get my house in order... 'cause you never know when you go sit under the tree that Buddha talks about and, all of a sudden, get attacked by a bear or something.
Don't laugh. Where I live, it's a possibility.
And then...
Someone would come to help clean out this mess and say, "My goodness. She sure had a lot of unfinished projects laying around. I wonder why she didn't finish them?"
This hangs greatly over my head.
I have work to do.
Of those beings who live in ignorance, shut up and confined, as it were, in an egg, I have first broken the eggshell of ignorance and alone in the universe obtained the most exalted, universal Buddhahood. Buddha
Read more at: http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/b/buddha_2.html
Of those beings who live in ignorance, shut up and confined, as it were, in an egg, I have first broken the eggshell of ignorance and alone in the universe obtained the most exalted, universal Buddhahood.
Read more at: http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/b/buddha_2.html