Believe it or not, but my life with animals did not begin with cats.
Some of our first companions were bunnies, our own, but also guests from the zoo.
The last one was my crazy boy Buster.
As you can see, the love extended to other bunnies as well, and there are more, in metal, as pictures, or in plush, such as this little old Steiff fellow.
It is not surprising that bunnies also made it into my work before, like the needle felted bunnaroo or these bunny siblings.
I could keep going, but it's time to get to the point.
The current challenge at the Jewelry Artisans Community is "Moon and Stars". Perfect for me as a moon lover.
What a lucky coincidence that my last bead order contained some more "moon" cabs, the faceted kind that I had used before, for example in the Moonlight Ravens, but also a few larger cat eye cabs.
I glued on one of the latter and that's when it hit me that a motif I had been wanting to do for a long time was even more perfect for me than just moon and stars - the Moon Hare.
While I learned about the Man in the Moon here, other cultures from Asia to America see the Hare or Rabbit in the Moon. The legends about the Moon Hare vary from country to country, if you are interested, you can find them here. It's really fascinating to read about similiarities and differences.
Now to some other rabbits that I have been fascinated for decades. The story is wild, kind of traumatizing as well, but the ending is beautiful. I'm talking about "Watership Down". I love both the book and the movie although there are scenes that still break my heart. I never fail to cry at the end when Hazel, the chief rabbit, is taken away by El-ahrairah to find peace after a long life.
El-ahrairah was the first rabbit, and although he upset Lord Frith, the creator of the world, he got the gift of speed, cunning, digging, and good hearing.
This is him after receiving that gift (thank you to Nightpaww for the GIF).
Several rabbits I knew were named after the book by us (unforgotten are Blackie Blackavar, the best rabbit mom ever, and sweet little Hyzenthlay) and the inspiration doesn't end there.
This is my bead embroidered Moon Hare.
As you can tell, El-ahrairah has inspired part of it.
By Frith, who has been on my bead looming list for ages, I got inspired to choose a flowing free form for the pendant.
Again, I used the beautiful dark blue hex beads for the night sky and golden AB ones for the stars.
I just love that magical sparkle when moving the piece, and this will definitely not be the last time for the hex beads to turn up in a design of mine.
There, now you know (almost) the whole story behind my love for rabbits and why I not only had fun making this pendant, but also why it brought up a lot of memories from the last 36 years, some of them bittersweet.
While I miss my bunnies (and the rest of the zoo), two cats are quite enough to keep me on my toes and also I wouldn't trust dem Dekan to leave a rabbit alone. So who knows, maybe I will be reviving more memories through my work instead.