Wednesday, May 9, 2012

It's All My Dad's Fault...

What do you give a dad who has everything and doesn't care much about possessions? Well, for a while, I just donated money to a charity I knew he would appreciate. But, that kind of got old (and I didn't have much money to give any more). So... I learned how to make bolo ties


Lucky for me, my Pop loves bolo ties (also called string ties). I think it started, for him, with trips to the Southwest. He would purchase beautiful Navajo silver and turquoise bolo ties. Whenever he went to his office, or out to dinner, on went the bolo.  

When I first started making them with polymer clay, I used to buy silver tips and leather cord. But, in an effort to place my own "voice" in the ties, I began making my own tips, and used buna cord instead of leather (heh, guess they could be called "buna bolos" - say that five times fast).  


Now I'm making them not just for my dad, but as necklaces (as in, for women). I really like wearing them myself. While I still love making my "honking big bead" necklaces, and am still playing around with the torque style necklace with magnets, my personal favorite to wear is the bolo. They are light, colorful (well, mine are), and unexpected (at least on a woman).  Throw in my kooky organic "cilia and cell" patterns, and they can generate a lot of surprised looks from folks - in a good way, that is.  So yeah, it's all my dad's fault.

13 comments:

Alice Stroppel said...

very cool and so great you have something to make for your dad...

slkunze said...

I love the "cilia and cell" patterns; they always remind me of the illustrations of mitosis in biology. I also like the way any pattern is shown off in the bolo slide and then formed into a different shape in the tips. Definitely cool pieces!

catmum said...

I love these! I could definitely wear them at work! I hope they show up on your Etsy site

artyjudy said...

Love the idea of wearing bola ties as a necklace and your pieces are superb!

Peraud sylvie said...

Absolutely beautiful Melanie. I love the pattern and design of these pieces.

Raven's Clay said...

Thanks Alice, Slkunze, Catmum, Artyjudy and Peraud!

Slkunze, you got the biological illustrations right! My favorite lab class in college was Limnology, where we had to look through a microscope and draw what we saw. ;)

Catmum, I have been meaning to put a bunch of my "simpler" pieces up on Etsy - I even have a separate shop set up. Just can't seem to make it all happen... I need a studio assistant, I think... or maybe a studio manager. And an artists rep. Heh... And, while I'm dreaming, how about someone who could do all my sanding! lol!

BluMoon said...

Oh my these are gorgeous and what a brilliant idea I love them!
I have a give away on my blog not pc though you are welcome to take a peek if you get a minute.
Jackie

fieldguidetohummingbirds said...

As someone who grew up wearing bolo ties and lives in Arizona where they're the official state neckwear (and they insist on spelling it "bola"), I've gotta say that these ROCK. Can't wait to see more!

Raven's Clay said...

Fieldguide...(to hummingbirds none-the-less! Sweet!),

Thanks for the kind words. Coming from a bolo aficionado such as yourself, that means a lot!

Aquariart said...

These are fabulous! Love the cilia and cell designs and your color combos are stunning!! Can't wait to try making some bolos! Maybe my husband would wear one?*!

Calneige (France) said...

It's wonderfull and very original !

Paul Hitz said...

Amazing I am your absolute biggest fan ms. West. I wear them everywhere. Thank you,

Simon Potter said...

Did you ever post any of those bolo ties for sale? They are great and I would proudly wear one of them.