Monday, November 29, 2010 The Pantone Colours of Fall 2010

Another project is here!  If you've read previous posts about Pantone Inc. on this blog, you'll be familiar with their importance in the fashion industry in the definition and language of colour.  The tools available from Pantone are a wealth of resources for fashion designers, interior decorators, paint manufacturers and many other facets of art and design.  Pantone Inc. releases a palpable colour palate every season, coinciding with fashion collections, interior design trends and visual art applications and receive feedback "on prominent collection colors, color inspiration, color philosophy" and signature shades of featured designers.  Take a look at this season's colour palate, featuring a great mix of warm, cool, earth and jewel tones!

So many possibilities when I looked at these colours!  My mind had went wild with the matches and combinations that I could use in these projects.  I had purchased a couple of bronze and gold-plated chain necklaces from Value Village, a local thrift department store, to repurposed into these pieces.  I had also purchased these ball headpins from snapcrafty on Etsy for this project to add some special detail.  There's also a pair of earrings and a few that had lost their mates, a store-bought necklace, fabric appliques from an old shirt and a few other little surprises!

After a little fun with Color Scheme Designer 3 for some inspiration on colour combinations (a great tool when you have an inspiration block, or don't know what to pair those fabulous beads you just got with), I had a great time strolling through with lots of ideas in mind.  With so many choices in beads and components, I had a hard time narrowing down selections. After finally deciding, I had realized most of my choices came from the Limited Edition selections, which will make these pieces all the more enticing and one-of-a-kind!  Most, if not all, of these beads used in these pieces will no longer be available from the site, but I do insist you take a look - you just may find that 'rare gem' your signature piece can't be without!  Beautiful coloured glass, vintage elements, resin rings and detailed pendants all fit into the bill for this colour-inspired collection.

The one colour combination that kept jumping out at me were the first three - the warm tones of Golden Glow and Lipstick Red with the cool complement of Lagoon.  I didn't want to fight first inspiration, so I used this to lead my search to my first 'colour-inspired' piece and found these lovely items - Citrine Irregular Teardrop Strand (LTD-2150), Turquoise Faceted Glass Roundel Bead Strand (LTD-1822), Small Petal Czech Glass Beads in Coral Red (CR-PT010).  This piece - followed by a few more you'll see in this collection - I am happy to say are the successful attempts at wire-wrapping loops for beaded headpins, and a little freeform element on the earrings.  A few were a little rough, but added to the character and charm of the vintage gold-plated and bronze chains the beads hung from.  All the chain used came from the two aforementioned necklaces purchased from Value Village in antiqued bronze and gold tones in different link patterns.  The fabric rosette, inspired by the Pantone colour Chocolate Truffle, was recycled from shirt I don't really wear anymore, and is sewn directly onto the large jumpring.  (I have ideas for a later incarnation of this necklace that this piece will be removable ie. alligator clasp or pin brooch and can be worn separately.)  I hadn't the heart to give this shirt away because I had been eyeing its material and fabric appliques, such as this flower, for some future project.  There are two more of these rosettes I can use for potentially matching accessories to these pieces.

Coin earrings, before
This was to revive life into a large, heavy and very tiresome pair of earrings I had purchased from a street vendor on Queen St. in Toronto a few years ago.  They are inscribed as being three Peruvian coins, in ascending sizes with a hammered metal fringe.  I couldn't let these go, again, because I knew there was a future project in the works.  The coins are curved inward to make tiny 'bowls' out of them, and the coins themselves have a rather 'garish' silver to them.  I thought Endive would be a great colour not not only pull back on that silver glare, but to bring a softness with a 'barely there' yellow.  I love the larger coins, with a picture of what looks to be a fawn.  For this repurposing project (as well as the next one), I had chosen a fascinating selection from the Limited Edition section - Pineapple Quartz Melon Bead Strand (LTD-2245).  The whisper-yellow swirls in these smooth beads have an opalescent quality to them, absolutely stunning.  The holes in the larger coins were rather conveniently placed for a two-strand bracelet, with the other smaller coins alternated on each strand.  The metal fringe turned into a small, lighter pair of earrings that I've worn a few times already - with many compliments!

I had bought this chainmaille bowtie pendant at a local Ardenes and had worn it quite a few times before reinventing it.  I wasn't entirely sure if I wanted to, but it was rather irresistible with a beauty like this!  It was originally on a simple gunmetal chain before I had included the Pineapple Quartz Melon Beads (LTD-2245).  These beads, inspired by the Pantone colour Endive, were selected originally for this piece, to complement the gunmetal charm of the bowtie with a pale yellow hue.  (The leftovers were used for the project above.)  A double-sided stamped medal from a vintage Paris souvenier bracelet adds a nice off-centre touch without overpowering attention.  A small Chanel 'Coco' charm (part of a great find - more Chanel surprises to come!), an Eiffel tower earring separated from its mate, and a solitary punch of sophisticated colour with this Twisted Oval Amethyst Purple Vintage Glass Bead (VIN-0407), inspired by the Pantone colour Purple Orchid, on a silver ball headpin.  The matching earrings are simple and elegant, dangling from the gunmetal chain that once was used to dangle the bowtie.  I've worn this set together a few times, with lots of compliments not only on the pendant, but the light catching beads along the necklace itself.  Sometimes, it's the little details that count!

A nice, quintessential fall bracelet, inspired by the turning colours and falling leaves of the season.  I walk my dog, Shiva, in the Brampton Cemetery, with big, beautiful trees and lovely headstones and sculptures. The colours of the trees were magnificent, and in such a peaceful place you had enough silence to drink it in ... until the dog starts barking at a squirrel.  (See pictures of the inspiration here!)  I found these beautiful pendants, the Gold-Plated Pewter Maple Leaf Cutout Pendant (PG-PEND014) and the Gold-Plated Pewter Two-Leaf Cutout Pendant (PG-PEND015) to add to the menagerie of 'still and falling colours in the sunlight'.  Joining the two pendants is a recycled earring that had lost its mate a long time ago, given to me by a coworker and friend.  The larger piece sits in the middle of these pendants, while a smaller piece can be found with the (yet to be attached!) clasp, all of it dangling from repurposed jewelry chain bought from Value Village.  The Pantone colours Golden Glow, Woodbine and Lipstick Red spoke to me the most when it came to the colours of the trees in the Cemetery.  I used Citrine Irregular Teardrop Strand (LTD-2150), Small Petal Czech Glass Beads in Coral Red (CR-PT010) and Wasabi Roundel Czech Glass Bead Strand (CR-RL133).  I had a few leftovers after everything was crimped and finished, and managed to make these matching earrings with metal elements from the aforementioned repurposed chain necklaces.  I love how these pieces turned out - modern sophistication in a traditional setting.

Designer's note: I did have a slight problem with the Gold-Plated Pewter Two-Leaf Cutout Pendant (PG-PEND015); the bail loop was a little too small for most jump rings I use to secure charms and pendants, and when trying to feed one through, it had broken off altogether.  Luckily, being a cutout pendant, I was still able to use it by feeding the jumpring through another leaf point and securing it onto the bracelet.  Nevertheless, it is a beautiful addition to this piece, and it wouldn't have been complete without it.

This bracelet was a bead wire-wrapping experiment turned glorious!  This is a great modern piece with 'shabby' elements, brought out in the silver circles and organic essence of the beads.  Upon my search for inspirations of Pantone's Oyster Gray and Rose Dust, I came across these - Grey Brazil Agate Nugget Bead Strand (LTD-2560).  The intricate layers and swirls in these stones had both these colours beautifully represented - I was so ecstatic!  The Lagoon-inspired Turquoise Faceted Glass Roundel Bead Strand (LTD-1822) is a great complement colour to these light hues.  The large silver circles were great frames for these beads dangling along the bracelet, and has great movement and swing.  (It even looks great as an anklet for the warmer season!)  Each bead is wire-wrapped with a silver ball headpin (with better-than-expected results), with silver-plated curved chain and a lobster clasp to secure it.  The earrings sport a similar fashion, using some of the leftover gunmetal chain from the 'Bowtie Experiment' above.  I think this will make a really great Christmas present for someone I know, but I may keep the earrings for myself!

This piece was the most fun to make!  Purple Orchid is a fantastic colour that adds a nice touch of drama to any ensemble.  These Lilac Resin Rings (RES-LIL40) have a beautiful natural look, almost like Purple Heart wood.  Pairing them with the Oyster Gray and Rose Dust hues of the Grey Brazil Agate Nugget Bead Strand (LTD-2560) was a match waiting to happen.  I had threaded the stone nuggets on tiger tail wire and crimped them off between two resin rings to connect them.  Silver-plated curved chain finishes off the necklace, with a hook clasp to make it adjustable.  I've worn this a few times with incredible compliments on how unique a necklace it is, one I received from an acquaintance who squealed because she loves the colour purple!

Designer's note: I have matching earrings on the way!

And a few quick snaps of the last project before it's wrapped up to be someone's Christmas present for Mr. or Mrs. I'm-Not-Telling!  These fashionable and sophisticated eyeglass holders feature the beautiful Pantone combination of Golden Glow, Purple Orchid and Woodbine with Citrine Irregular Teardrop Strand (LTD-2150), Twisted Oval Amethyst Purple Vintage Glass Bead Strand (VIN-0407) and Wasabi Roundel Czech Glass Bead Strand (CR-RL133).  The antique bronzed metal detail is courtesy of elements from the repurposed chain jewelry bought from Value Village.  A fun and tasteful combination of colours, and the beads have a lovely and smooth weight, so that you remember where your glasses are!  

Colour is the most fundamental inspiration any designer can fall back on.  Colour depicts moods, represents status, evokes images, sparks inspiration.  Pantone, Inc. proclaims that they are the 'authority in colour', proving with a thumb on the pulse of fashion, design and art they can help other artists stay current and ahead of the trends in colour palates.  Visit their site and take a look at the inspiration that awaits you - and visit to find just what you need to create it!

*Disclaimer: I had received these products free of charge from and I am making an honest review of the products and have not been paid for this endorsement as it pertains to the products received.  Ditto for Pantone, Inc.  Really, they're just awesome people.

Photography credit: Cassandra Watsham

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