Theme jewelry

When I started making jewelry, I never thought of making theme jewelry, well, not on purpose at least. I didn't even think much about that subject before the Jewelry Artisans Community chose it for this month's blog carnival.

What is theme jewelry? That's jewelry with a theme of course.
What themes are there although it would probably be easier to ask what themes aren't there.
Seasons or holidays. Awareness, of a disease for example. Nature. Animals. Zodiac signs. Birthstones. These are just a few of the popular ones that come to mind.

Looking back myself I can tell that one or the other theme related piece sneaked into my work early on. The cats were there first. Of course they were, as wire crochet cat head pendants.
After that, however, I can't really remember any theme jewelry. My muse ran wild and it was possible that after finishing it a piece reminded me of a theme, but I didn't plan anything.
That changed when I started bead looming. Suddenly I felt I had all kinds of possibilities not only to pursue a theme once, but to make whole series.
There were animal print cuffs when I needed contributions for our local zoo raffle.
I played with classic fabric patterns like Gingham, Herringbone, Argyle, and Houndstooth.
Floors, tiles, and rugs inspired me.
I created animals like the panda, the unicorn or cats sitting in a window.
Halloween and Christmas items turned up. Art Nouveau. Bollywood. Symbols like the Eye of Horus or a pentacle.

Wow. Until now I didn't even realize how looming changed my style or should I say added to it.

You may wonder why I haven't shared any pictures yet. Well, now we are coming to two series that have become special to me.

One of them are of course the HeatherCats.
For those who really don't know them yet, they are a collaboration of my friend Heather, a New Zealand artist with a whimsical mind, and myself, Cat. Therefore the HeatherCats. Oh yes, and they are cats. Who would have thought, eh?
I transfer Heather's paintings into wearable jewelry. I love them, and I'd love to make the cats in all kinds of color combinations. Some of the designs were so perfect for color variations that I already did them, like the Shadycats for example.
There's no chance I can pick a favorite, either. Heather, another cat lady with three adorable cats called Biskit, Cookie, and Pudding who also fosters kittens, knows exactly the ways how to paint a cat and make you go squee, smile, chuckle or even laugh out loud.
This collage doesn't even show all of them and definitely not all of them yet because I want to make more. If you want to see pictures of the originals, by the way, you can find them with each listing in my shop. Of course you can also visit Heather's deviantART to see not only cats, but also her other work.

The other one is a fairly recent addiction that started with Edgar Allan Poe. I had been wanting to loom his portrait for a while, in a negative space version. Instead a sudden inspiration told me to use the whole photo, but cut down on the number of colors to see what would happen.
When I showed the pendant on my Facebook page, a friend there suggested that there had to be a Tesla pendant as well.
I was doomed, in more than one way. After following another suggestion - Audrey Hepburn - I remembered that Bela Lugosi had been on the top of my list for a long time. I had figured he would become a panel, but now he became a pendant instead. Dracula led to Frankenstein led to the Phantom of the Opera led to Nosferatu. For comic relief Laurel and Hardy sneaked their way in.
Why I was doomed in more than one way, you want to know? I got drawn into classic horror. Beside wire and beads movies are one of my obsessions and now I went back in time. Dracula, The Wolfman, The Invisible Man .... seriously, how do you make a pendant of an invisible man? I'm still chewing on that one. Phantom of the Opera. Freaks. Now that movie poster would be a very ambitious project. I put it on my list. There's so much on my list. Not just looming. What about the wire? My hooks are lonely. I gotta take a break. Gaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah .........................

Yup. Looks like it is almost time for the Hug Me jacket. With beads, please. Maybe I could loom one. Do you think I could? There's that pattern I really need to make first, though.
Breathe, breathe ..... calm down.
There you go. Doomed, that's me.
Here's a picture of the portrait pendants I got so far. I'm still not sure why I picked a picture of Cary Grant in which he didn't smile, but made one of his faces.

Well, I guess after all that I could say that I am making theme jewelry.
If you want to hear what the other JAC members have to say about the subject of theme jewelry, have a look at the following links. I have no doubt it will not sound as crazy as what you've just read ;-)

Jewelry Art by Dawn
Violetmoon's Corner
The Crafty Chimp
Echoes of Ela


  1. Great post.

    I'm still in love with all your heathercats. <3
    hahahahah, can't wait to see your invisible man pendant. ;)

  2. Looks like we're in agreement about not wanting themes to stifle our creativity.

    Cat, your Heather Cats and your portraits are themes that seem to have fueled your creativity - now that's what a theme should be all about!

    Love them both and look forward to seeing what you come up with next.

    1. Dawn, both of these series truly reflect something I love and who I am. I am the crazy cat lady, I am the annoying person who keeps throwing quotes into the round.
      And let's not forget it's the dinosaur who holds to the things in the past because they shouldn't be forgotten! :-D

  3. Cat, I am so amazed by the life like portraits you are able to loom! And the HeatherCats are absolutely adorable! If you figure out a pattern for the beaded straight jacket - I will probably need one, too;)

    1. Thank you, Karin!
      I'll let you know when I'm ready to make our forum jackets! ;-)