by Sam Niemeyer, Exclusively for Fire Mountain Gems and Beads®
Representing life and innocence, as well as power, independence and mystique--the flora of our planet is at once the most desired and most difficult material to capture in jewelry designs. Flowers and plants, like gemstone beads, have their own metaphysical and homeopathic meanings--such as red roses for romance and chrysanthemums for long life and friendship.
Mythology is another reason why flora has become a staple theme in jewelry and accessories. From ancient Greek myth there was Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty. She famously wore a myrtle blossom wreath and created the anemone from the tragedy of her dying lover. Her beauty was mimicked by women in the ancient western world and still influences fashion today.
The most fashionable way to design with natural flowers and plants in 2012 is called "capsule jewelry." Capsule jewelry captures natural found items from gardens and parks set in small bottle pendants, resins, metal clay or other mediums. Dried leaves and flowers placed beneath a clear glass cabochon is a classic example. Another is to coat real flowers in protective resin to create permanent wearable flowers, as seen in Prada's Spring 2012 line.
In addition, other natural components such as wood and nuts are making headlines. Accessories magazine highlights wood as a major trend for Spring, "Designers are knocking on nature's door this summer as they incorporate one of its most versatile materials--wood." Seed bead, felt components and shell in flower shapes or designs also adds the appeal of everlasting spring to designs.
Design with ... Use found pieces of beautiful leaves, flowers, mosses and more from the world around you to capture nature with: