Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Muertos Mania

Images courtesy of Cindy Gimbrone. Copyright Cindy Gimbrone

A couple of months ago, Cindy emailed me to ask if I'd like to do a collaboration with her. She'd send me some of her COOL skull beads and I'd work some jewelry magic with them. I love her work and couldn't type "YES PLEASE!!!" fast enough!

Cindy Gimbrone is a lampwork bead artist. She makes all kinds of fabulous beads, glass links and bowl bezels. My faves are of course the Heartz N Skullz series and also her new Surreal Rhythym beads.

She sent the beads shown above and I couldn't wait until the package arrived! YIPPEE! They are so wonderful in person! I had some ideas before they arrived but after holding them I changed my mind. I wanted to showcase the beads in such a way that someone wouldn't think they could only wear them in the fall or just at Halloween time. I had a great time working with these beads and want to thank Cindy for letting me play with them! Here is what I did with them.

image copyright Barbe Saint John/Saints & Sinners®

First the Calaveraz (on right). I had envisioned them on a necklace full of vintage plastic flower beads. I had a few flower beads but not enough for my vision, so bought more on ebay. The universe was against this idea and I had numerous problems getting flowers. So I nixed that idea and tried a few others. Everything I tried seemed to take the attention away from the bead, then it hit me - make into a centerpiece by turning the bead into a cameo. I absolutely love the way it turned out!

The Skele'Bowz beads are really adorable and the challenge was to make them cute but not TOO cutesy. I played around with them alot until I finally starting bending black steel wire into heart shapes. I wanted the wirework to be like fancy wrought iron scroll work, but using the heart shape kept from looking too heavy or gothic. I made the necklace strands asymetrical as well to help with the whimsical look.

I sent Cindy a preview pic, HOPING she would like what I did with her glass art. Happily she was just as thrilled with them as I was!!! I hope you'll visit Cindy's website and snatch up her fabulous beads and make your own gorgeous jewelry. Also be sure to check out her blog too, where she shares lots of her work, progress, inspiration and load of eyecandy!!!


Jessica said...

Very cute necklaces!!

Barbe Saint John/ Saints and Sinners® said...


The Beading Gem said...

The skulls are way cool and I like how you made the necklaces fun too! Pearl

susanc said...

These are great - I love skellies!

floyfreestyle said...

These would be a real hit in S. Tx. where the Dia de los Muertos is a serious holiday!

Sophie said...

what's wrong with too gothic! they'd look great with some jet black swarovski bicones and wire wrapped into earrings! Will definitely go over and get some from Cindy!
--sophie from

Melissa J. Lee said...

Ooh, la la! The cameos are just gorgeous - I love them!