Focus: Christmas in July Wish List

Focus: Christmas in July Wish List

Courtesy of The Crafts Report
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Artist erin l. meharg harris (yes, the lower case is intentional) fell under the spell of Noel noise this summer. "My trio of sterling silver bells makes a very sweet sound. They are definitely the type of jingle bells that anyone would adore!" the artist notes. (www.elmharris.com)

Inspiration comes from the most extraordinary places. Case in point: Jim O'Donnell who wanted to conceive a vase that would replicate a "beautiful feminine figure." He happened upon his muse in the form of a certain German supermodel. "Claudia" is constructed of 145 pieces of Central American mahogany and Brazilian Yellowheart woods. "When it is slowly rotated by hand, the segments of this vase 'flash' at the admirer," O'Donnell shares. (www.vaseturner.com)

PB3corte stems from Dunitz and Company's beaded collection. These adjustable cuffs are fashioned with hand-woven fabric that has been adorned with Czech and Japanese glass seed beads, embroidery, buttons, and semiprecious chips. All of these items are handcrafted in Guatemala for a Fair Trade Federation member company. "No two creations will ever be exactly the same," Nancy Dunitz observes. (www.dunitz.com)

After a successful career with Walt Disney Animation, Jacque Pierro and her husband, John, opened their own design studio in 2004. The artist’s focus has become the translation of textiles into decorative pillows, handbags, totes, and pouches. All of her textiles are hand silkscreened from her own artwork. She utilizes eco-friendly, water-based inks that are mixed in-house. (www.JacquePierro.com)

Rebeca Mojica’s "Chainmaille Scarf" is created from anodized aluminum chainmaille. Mojica loves the "jingle that the fringe makes" when it is worn while walking. The responses that she receives while wearing it to networking events and parties are "absolutely merry." According to Mojica, "The scarf is all about fashion and not warmth. I embrace doing them in color because it makes the scarves absolutely pop!" (rebecamojica.com)

Merideth Young has an agile mind and facile fingers. The good-natured, well-spoken artist explains that "no power is used in my creative process--except for woman power! All my designs are friendly to the Earth." Young begins her jewelry designs with a simple aluminum can: "I cut these into various shapes. Next, the jewelry is fastened together using cold connections. Lastly, it's hand-sanded. My end product is super-cool, lightweight, fun and funky jewelry!" (www.meridethyoung.com)

In her large perennial garden that encircles her Connecticut studio, Merrie Buchsbaum grows lavender and hydrangea for their beauty and for their artistic purpose. Once the plants are past their bloom, she cuts and dries them. Then she grinds the dried flower up and mixes it with a polymer resin. She hand-forms each pen from the mixture she has made. Her hydrangea and lavender pens are made from and reflect the actual plant's colors and textures. (www.merrilymade.com)

Kris Kramer's "Leather Key Holder Earrings" have caused the artist to take pause and consider what was designed: "I would feel a certain awe and respect for a key holder, such as these, if I were holding a vintage one in my hands today. I love working with the tiny and making earrings that look highly designed from afar and fascinating close-up." (www.kriskramer.com)

Pamela Mattei is celebrated for her colorful and vibrant hand-dyed scarves. Part of the Metamorphosis Collection, these wearable pieces of art measure 8 x 54 inches. "Any day would feel like Christmas if you gave or received one of my luxurious hand-dyed scarves," Mattei states. "My designs accessorize and adorn in ways that only art can!" (www.DyeSignsByPamela.com)

Louise Coulson's Helix pendants are enameled by using both a kiln and torch. "The concentration and discipline needed when you hold a torch in one hand and manipulate molten glass with the other produces an almost Zen state," Coulson muses. "It grounds you in that moment in time, which is then preserved in glass. You don't see or hear anything else during the process." (www.kingfisherdesignsmetals.com)

Melody Armstrong has fashioned a series of "Dermis Rings." The artist describes these cocktail rings as "edgy, textural, and real conversation pieces." Pictured here, a "Rutilated Quartz Dermis Ring," a "Druzy Dermis Ring," and a "Pyrite Checkerboard Dermis Ring." Made with sterling silver and 14-karat yellow gold, each ring is unique with its settings and styling. (www.melodyarmstrong.com)

Anna Mazon has blended the past with the present in her flashdrive pendant. Inside the remarkably sculpted jewelry design is a fully operational memory stick. "I was inspired by a Norse sea goddess named Rán, who reigns over the Underworld found at the bottom of the sea. She catches in her net all those sailors who never gave her an offering," the artist narrates. (drakonaria.com)

The designers at Sea Stones have a deep and abiding respect for the Earth. "We honor nature and our planet," they say. "For every smooth stone we collect, a rough quarry stone is then 'planted' for the water to tumble into smoothness." Their spinning "Pirouette" wine caddy and wineglasses are remarkable transformations of the sea stones into functional art. (sea-stones.com)


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