Friday, 4 April 2014

Sustainable Crafts: From recycled materials

So, we have quickly come to the end of the 8 week Sustainable Crafts: Recycled Materials course at Bedwas Adult Education Centre and here are the designs made by the students. With a mix of complete beginners and experienced makers in the class, the focus was on introducing everyone to using recycled materials in their work and looking at what we may deem 'junk' and giving it a new lease of life. Everyone learned how to make paper beads and many chose to incorporate them into their final designs. Recycled lace and lots of old jewellery parts were also used and even some sewing bobbins and old tights were inventively adapted for a couple of necklaces! I wanted this to be a project where we got to use scissors and glue and have fun with the designs and I think everyone's creativity was put to good use.

Sue's sewing and crochet skills were invaluable in creating a beautiful bib style necklace. Recycled lace forms the background to a myriad of tiny, handmade paper beads, fine knitted wire and pearl beads all hung on matching silk thread.
A well balanced, vintage style design with perfect colour choices for the wire and findings. Sue also created matching earrings
Angela's first time at jewellery making has produced a  lovely, elegant design featuring handmade paper tube beads, glass faceted beads, a focal pendant and finished with gorgeous gold coloured chain. The wrapping paper used for the beads has an  unusal, embossed finish that give them a tactile quality.

Avril had the ingenious idea of using old nylon tights to make her necklace. Using the technique of Kumihimo to weave two shades together, she made a lightweight base on which to hang her wire wrapped., upcycled bead pendant.
Lynne used black paper flecked with silver to make stunning tapered beads and combined them with matching recycled beads to produce an Art Deco style set. The silver chain and findings are a  great choice for the beads.
Tobia wrapped a lovely piece of seaglass in a wire design and weaved a decorative bail to hang the pendant on a simple chain. She also incorporated a mix of wooden buttons in this very pretty choker style necklace.
Victoria hadn't made jewellery before and along with producing unusual paper beads and using recycled lace for other designs, she decided to combine paper beads and recyced bead mixes for a choker style necklace and bangle. The wire spacer beads were made from wrapping wire in  random tube and bead shapes.
Viv has gone for a sewing theme and re-used bobbins to make the main section of her design. Adding colourful buttons and matching wire to attach everything to a re-purposed knife spring! The safety pins and little scisssors charm give it a great quirky finish.

Rachel is new to making jewellery and had a  great idea to use safety pins for this bracelet. The blue topped ones look fab with matching recycled beads. She also made these vibrant red paper beads using wall paper. Combined with gold chain and findings the necklace is very striking.

Kelly combined lots of recycled jewellery parts in her design including woodand beads. She used a variety of techniques to create wirework designs including coiling and freeform flowers. The design is bold and the oranges mix really well with the copper coloured wire and brown suede. I like the asymmetrical element of the necklace which has a great deal of work involved.
Katie is new to jewellery making and opted for paper beads to create a necklace. The beads are threaded on wire to give the shape rigidity but is attached to some chain which lets it sit on the chest rather than around the nek and gives the piece some movement.
Jen is new to jewellery making and has really enjoyed learning the new processes. She made three paper beads in a tube style that were slightly different in length. this worked well to create a central section and is given focus at the bottom with a solid, recycled square bead. Recycled gun metal chain, matching beads and findings pull the look together nicely. The baeds are decorated with glitter and the purple tones are very pretty, making this a very wearable necklace.