Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Durfort Dreams Bracelet

When I was in Milwaukee this past June, one of the pieces I made in Susan Lenart Kazmer's class was this bracelet, which I call "Durfort Dreams". I had been collecting the bits and pieces for a while but hadn't gotten around to combining them just yet but figured that Susan's lessons on cold connections and joining found objects would be just right for bringing this piece together, and they were!

The various charms all have significance, mostly to remind me of my time in Durfort but also to remind me of Susan's class:

- a bezel charm has a picture of a fleur-de-lis that was on the lid of a copper pan sold in a shop in Durfort;

- another resined charm holds a picture of a sunflower overlaid with french handwriting;

- a peace sign, to remind me of the peaceful feeling of every day village life;

- the coloured ribbon strung through the chain itself reminds me of the lights over the stalls at the night market in Avignonet;

- I found the flattened "Pacifico" bottle cap one sultry summer afternoon in the town square in Soreze;

- the metal cross represents my trip to the cemetery;

- there is a bead with a pink sequin and a cubic zurconia, which were given to me by my friends Colleen and Heather, who took Susan's class with me and also went to Mexico for Kate's workshop there;

- I made the PMC charm with a black and white picture of a woman that I got from Kate's collection of images and Kate's name stamp as a reminder of Kate (although this piece definitely looks a little too shiny and silver compared to the rest of the antiqued brass bracelet, I shall have to get myself some liver of sulphate and add a patina to it);
- coincidentally, the resined charm next to this one on the bracelet is one I made in Milwaukee using a combination of the same B&W photo (showing more of the glamourous woman elegantly smoking from a cigarette holder and wearing nothing but a string of pearls), the copper fleur-de-lis and a postmark that says Paris;
-one charm is a mix of ribbons and beads which was my experiment with a certain technique of Susan's for twisting ribbon, it didn't really work the way it was supposed to but I kept it anyway;

- a little circle charm that is a two copper discs enclosing a stack of papers with a French postage stamp and a piece from a French dictionary and a picture of an owl that can be fanned open to show the contents - again, this was one of the techniques/designs Susan taught us;
- the letter charms are an "F" for my last name and a "K" for Susan's (because she also teaches workshops at La Cascade, she was quite excited to see my piece and we swapped stories of our times there);

- the painted copper piece was made by one of the women in the workshop, Sydney a.k.a. The Copper Woman, who very generously shared pieces of her art with all of us;

- the owl bead reminds me of the little owl that crossed our path on the last night, and was made by Karen Elmquist, who was in my class in Milwaukee (I love how that one circles around to join the two experiences!)

- there is a French blue bead and an old key;

- one of the charms is the picture of the group of us at the night market that I am so fond of; and

- there are two coins joined together as one charm, an French franc and a Euro, representing the old and new currencies of France.
I had fun putting this bracelet together and it brings me a lot of joy to look at the charms and recall the various people and places that it represents.

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