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Drum Beat - a mixed media necklace - part one

Drum Beat in progress

I love mixing materials that aren't supposed to go together! Like, for instance, fabric beads mixed with wire and ceramics. To prevent your piece from causing sensory overload, choose a color palette with harmonious hues. I used an earthy, natural palette, but you can substitute another for the one I outline below. When the piece was finished, it had such a primal feel to it that one of my helpful online friends suggested that I name it Drum Beat.

Materials:Muslin, torn into a 2 x 24 inch strip
Waxed paper
Tsukineko walnut inks in eucalyptus, walnut, and terra cotta
Jacquard Lumieres acrylic paint in burgundy and bright gold
30 inches of 2mm white satin cord
Fray check
2-3 plastic drinking straws
Beacon’s Liquid Laminate or other thin glue
53 inches of 20 gauge brass-colored craft wire
35 – 5mm ceramic rondelles
30 – 12mm ceramic lentils
15 – 9x5mm ceramic barrels
5 – 2mm gold metal rounds
40 jump rings
35 head pins
Sponges or paint brushes
Pinking shears
Chain nose pliers
Round nose pliers
Wire cutters,
Measuring tape

1. Lightly dampen your strip of muslin. Protect your work surface with waxed paper and spray the muslin lightly with the walnut inks. Let them spread into each other. Sponge burgundy acrylic paint on the top. Using the sponge or paint brush, paint a stripe of bright gold acrylic paint lengthwise down the center and along both edges of your cloth. Use whichever colors you want to stain the 30 inch satin cord to match.

2. When dry, tear the muslin strip in half lengthwise, and then cut each inch-wide strip into 6 inch lengths. Using pinking shears, cut each 6 inch strip diagonally lengthwise You will end up with 16 pieces. Cut the drinking straws into 16 pieces, each ¾ inch long.

3. Form each fabric bead by applying a bit of Liquid Laminate to the wide end. Stick it to a piece of drinking straw and roll it up. As you approach the pointed end, apply a dab of glue to it to seal the bead..

4. Cut 4 pieces of 20 gauge wire into 6 inch lengths. Cut one into a 9 inch length. Wind the wire into spirals facing opposite directions from each end, to meet in the middle. Fold the two spirals together and pull them apart from the centers to form bicone beads. File the ends smooth if needed.

5. Slide the largest wire bead to the center of the satin cord. String on barrel-shaped ceramic beads, your fabric beads, and more wire beads. Knot the cord after the last bead on each side to keep them in place.   

Copyright 2013 Cyndi Lavin. All rights reserved. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. May be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.

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Very pretty combination, Cyndi!