one-of-a-kind handmade glass beads and bespoke silver jewellery by Chellie Purnell

How does your garden grow?

'Chellie1 Comment

Hi all,

I just had to do a little blog about my latest project.

These ones have been so much fun!

It's been all around a garden theme! Those that know me know that I love the outdoors and plants, mud and rain, and green is my favourite colour! What's not to like?

I love working with green glass too!

There is so much richness and freshness in the colour; and so much variation too in terms of tone and texture.

 A lovely customer of mine has a beautiful 'garden' themed bracelet pictured here; and she asked me if I could make her some special beads to complete and finish it off...

She wrote me a great note, full of fab ideas.

In each case I have put her thoughts in the handwriting font so you can see where the ideas for the beads came from, and for each bead there are some pictures. (These were either provided by my customer herself, or found by me as I was researching the ideas.)

So my aim was to get a set of beads that fitted the brief; worked together as a set; and also fitted in with the existing beads that she owns.

It looked like quite a challenge. But because the ideas were so personal and unusual it was a really rewarding and great fun.

OK then, so here's how it went...


So this one seemed straightforward enough, until I started it.... 

It turned out to be the most difficult of the lot!

I wanted to get the opacity of the leaves right and have the right depth of encasing to get the light and dark elements of the ivy right. In the end I must have done about 6 versions of this one... they just weren't behaving at all, and even after I'd got two good ones I still couldn't decide on the 'best' one so I am offering my customer 2 possibles.... this one is number two...

The second version has more creamy white in it and more defined 'leaves'.

 I like this one too.. I certainly couldn't decide. 

(I hope my customer can... or maybe she will just have to have both??...)





had no idea how it would turn out either but I really like this one. 

It's got that pretty iridescence on the petals that only posh silvered glass can give... 

Ooh lushola! and it works so prettily with the greens...


(I did think that this one was going to be nigh-on impossible when she asked me,) but then I had a little think on howit might work and it only took me three tries!! the first two looked more like encased algae than encased shoots but hey...

 This 'shoots' one turned out to be one of the most visually effective ones!

 It looks really good when the bead 'turns' on the chain as the clear glass magnifies the shoots in different ways.


My lady had already given me a tip on this one because she envisaged it looking similar to the brown swirly 'leaf trails' bead that she had bought from me earlier on in the year (which is one her bracelet above) so I had a bit of an idea as to how I would attack this one! 

I started by making a turquoise blue and bright pea green twisted rod of glass with clear,  and then wrapped it several times to make the idea of the feathery 'flurry'. It's got a great 'lightness' about it I think; because of the colours, the ribbony texture of the strands, and the play of light through the bead.


When I read this request I thought this would be the one that was a 'bridge too far' in terms of dooability (if that's a word ;-), but having had a go at it, it looked brilliant first time round and I will definitely use this technique for other beads in the future.

I used a very light amber core for this one and then used ultra thin strings of black and brown to give the impression of branches. I then surrounded this layer with flecks of lime green, yellow and pea green for the leaves. The overall result is just right. (I really want this one myself!!!)

Here all the set are together. I hope that she likes them and enjoys wearing them on her Garden Bracelet... 





Thats all from me for a bit.. Christmas orders beckon!! Eeek!

As always I welcome any comments and enquiries...

Feel free xxx