I've never been one to "get" murrini. I've played with a few pieces and go "ick" and usually toss the bead in the water. I've never figured out how to use murrini with what I do. And sometimes, that's so frustrating. My goodness! My friend Lauren is such a murrini lover, she dedicates her Monday blog posts to murrini! And her work is amazing.
And my friend Janel makes the most amazing eye murrini and turns them into the most stunning necklaces:
Then Janel decided to write an Eye Bead Tutorial and asked me to try it out her way. She sent me some of her stunning eye murrini and some glass rods and OH MY! I was in LOVE!
These were my first attempts at Janel style eye beads:
First of all, I learned more about casing and what I was doing wrong from Janel's tut and I learned about coaxing that murrina to do what you want it to do. It's a great tut!!
But I never want to make a bead just like someone else does so I started trying to think of how I could use Janel's techniques. I've always been fascinated with eye beads. If you don't know the history or meaning behind them, you may find them creepy.
Eye beads are meant to offer protection. Think of the third eye in Indian culture. The eye bead for protection is also really popular in Greece, Armenia and in Egypt. I've always been fascinated with Egyptian eyes and looked at lots of Egyptian artwork to come up with the background colors for that bead above. I also researched Egyptian symbolism to figure out what to put on the back.
I found out that a squared off version of a swirl... an image prevalent in all human art since the caveman era ... stands for home. What a better thing to offer protection over than home!
I loved the bead but got so entranced in the process of making it, I forgot a few steps! I wanted a casing of clear over the eye to magnify Janel's stunning murrina. And... it just seemed to be lacking something!
In the end, I realized that sand was probably a more fitting background as the bright colors of Egyptian art may not appeal to most customers. And I wanted it bigger! I do love those big beads!
Here's the final version:
I'm finally excited about murrini thanks to Janel!
P.S. Her tut should be ready really soon!!!!