I confess I'm not a skull jewelry person; I'm more the happy flower-and-bird type. At the same time, I'm always up for a challenge. So when I received several strands of antiqued-looking skull beads from Halcraft USA, I challenged myself to use as many as I could.
How to Make This Midnight Ranch Necklace
I strung the skull beads on several different shades of brown cord and knotted in between each bead. I attached those beaded strands to three strands of soft leather lace using foldover cord ends and jump rings. (I love foldover cord ends—one of the easiest findings to use for flat cord or ribbon.) I added a lobster clasp to one side of the necklace. Full step-by-step instructions are on the Halcraft USA website.
The Story Behind The Name
Naming projects can be difficult. Occasionally, as with this necklace, a name pops into my head before I've even finished the project. With Midnight Ranch, I started telling myself a story as I knotted:
Where would you find so many old-looking skulls jumbled together like this? Maybe the leather is a clue: it would be somewhere out west, a desolate area far from civilization. It would be dark with the only light coming from the moon.
I pictured a woman on horseback galloping across the open plains. She stops at a bluff and looks down. Skulls are scattered on the rocks below . . .
What happens next? I suppose I'll need to write that story and find out!
Halloween Effects for Photos ...
I love playing around with my jewelry photos. (I didn't make this one shown at left, but I wish I did.)
If you go to Pic Monkey (a free graphics program), they have some cool spooky effects that you can use on your photos. You can add gashes or zombie eyes to your face or you can make your Halloween jewelry look like it perfectly matches the season. They even have fun fonts with names like "Face Your Fears" and "Nightbird."
... and a Pet Photo Contest
This has nothing to do with jewelry, except that many jewelry folks I know have an extended pet family.
PicMonkey is sponsoring a FrankenPet Halloween Contest. Create a Halloween-style photo of your pet and win one of several prizes, including a really cool video/photo camera. Entries are due on Halloween.