Disk Arrangements

farraguas skinner disc 430x550 - Disk ArrangementsDisc beads are fantastic for the complexity they can create just by sheer numbers. They also pull the design away from any one bead and put the focus on how they work together. Employing Skinner blends to create the series of well-arranged colors on this necklace, Spain’s Carmen Morente del Monte, develops a rather striking look with the common stacked disk necklace design as the basis for her composition.

It is not that we haven’t seen quite a few Skinner disc arrangements but this one is rather intriguing with its wide array of colors that still somehow conveys a sense of quiet coherence. I believe that is primarily due to the muted, natural tone of the colors. Their thick spacers subtly echo the surrounding color while their variations trail off to long stacks of warm grays. I think the choice of gray rather than black or white or simply more of the colorful blends for the back half of the bead string is actually what makes this piece work so well. The gray creates a kind of neutral background for the colors to contrast with but the contrast is a gentle one which is also echoed at points in the front beads where the blends go to gray.

I was just having a conversation this weekend about how people steer away from anything well used believing their work won’t be appreciated unless it’s wholly original but how far from the truth that is. Doing something really, really well, even when it has elements seen many times before, is a far bigger and more difficult accomplishment than striving for something purely original. I think this necklace is just such an example.

You can find more of Carmen’s well thought out pieces in her Etsy shop and her Pinterest boards.


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Double down on Extruder Discs

Today … just a simple but clever idea for all you extruding fiends out there. Marie Segal has an extensive set of pages on her website on creating African trade beads and within those pages, on Part 5 she talks about making new shapes for the extruder by doubling up the discs. Genuis!


Of course you could put more than one disc in if it continues to pleasantly change the shape. Just need a little something to hold them in position as she demonstrates in her post. But how fun. This would certainly multiply your extruder shape options for the low low cost of  … well, nothing. Who doesn’t like that?


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