You remember my "problem rosary", don't you?
Such a pretty center, with beautiful contrasting colors, and yet it did not work at all with the rosary I was making. I couldn't figure it out.
So, among all the normal duties that a housewife is supposed to be doing; mothering, cleaning, laundry, dinners, appeasing the husband....I was always thinking--obsessing--over this rosary. I just couldn't get it out of my head.
I even prayed about it. Yes, I felt a little silly because I felt like it shouldn't have become such a big deal. To even out the selfishness of the prayer, I also prayed for world peace and the conversion of sinners. :-)
Once I started praying, I couldn't stop. And the nice thing about prayer is, no matter how small the problem, you know that God is listening. As I prattled off my situation to God, explained it all in detail and all the problems I was running into, it reminded me of how my kids come to me very trustingly that I will listen to their problems and take them seriously--no matter how small the problems are.
Anyway, gradually, the fog began to clear and I began to get insights that I hadn't had before; the comments and suggestions that people were brave enough to leave (I know it can always be a little "risky" to give constructive criticism, even if someone asks for it) also helped a lot. The words "contrast", "texture" "dark" and "lighter" and even "more orange" leaped out at me, and then, as I was working on a rosary that I make for men, it suddenly dawned on me. As I was cutting up squares for my "man rosary" (I just don't have a creative name for it), I suddenly realized that I needed squares, not round beads!
I knew that I wanted orange and blue to be the contrasting colors for the rosary, just like it is in the picture of the center. But the two colors were just not looking right when I tried to swirl them together in a round bead. The proportion of the swirl was all wrong.
What I needed was speckles. And I needed the speckles on a square, because it was more of a flat surface to achieve the look I was going for.
Because I am just "that weird", I'll show you how I made the square beads using the "man rosary" method. (Maybe I should just call it Square Bead Rosary??) My first tutorial, I'm so proud! :-)
The pictures by the way, are taken with my old camera, so it will be the typical bad lighting/out of focus pictures.
I first started off with three separate colors; dark blue, orange and I decided to add some silver, to balance it all out. I purposely don't combine the clay and you'll see why in a minute.
I then start chopping up the 3 balls of clay with my razor. I don't have a food processor, so I have to chop up the clay about a million times before I get the effect I want.
Then I roll it out with my rolling pin.
Once it's nice and flat and the specks of clay have somewhat combined, but not swirled, I cut it up and start all over again. Then I again roll it out. I keep doing this over and over until it "looks right".
|Sorry it's blurry!|
When I get the neat "granite" look, I know I've got the effect that I wanted. I then cut it up into strips, then squares and then put the eye pins in and bake the beads.
Let me tell you, by themselves, the beads didn't look all that pretty. But linked together and next to that gorgeous center, it just all came together.
The roses were harder to figure out because of the color; but once I finally figured out the color, it was easy. Basically, no color was working with this center, and believe me, I tried them all. I knew I wanted some sort of orange or peach but that didn't work either. But again, after some prayer, I realized that my roses needed exactly what my beads needed--speckles. Speckles gave texture, and for whatever reason that I still do not understand, this rosary needed a lot of texture. So I got the bright idea to use "stone clay"; special clay that has the tiniest little grains of speckles that you can barely see, and yet it gives enough texture to make it look like real stones. So I used the peach/orange stone clay to make the roses, and amazingly, it worked!
So this is the finally finished Our Lady of Good Counsel rosary--although I think she should be promoted to "Great Counsel", because I prayed to her a lot regarding this rosary.
I now can stop obsessing, and start praying for things that really matter.
I'm not going to ask if you like it--because now that you know you can be honest with me, you might tell me you don't like it. But I gotta tell you--I love you guys--but I'm not changing it. :-)