A Bead Challenge – The Monk’s Retreat Fairy House

I bought the little church-shaped terrarium at a yard sale, certain I would do something with it some day. It would never come completely clean due to the chemicals in the soil and water, and perhaps, the plants that had once resided inside of it.

My girlfriend, and fellow artist, Beyond Mirays, gave several of her friends a bag of beads on the occasion of her birthday. Our gift to her was to “Create something with these, and then show me what you made”. She’s a gifted bead artist: how could I compete?! But, really – a bead challenge?

I already had the little monk fairy creature, one of my first attempts at sculpture using polymer clay (I’ve learned more techniques, and am slowly improving). He had sort of a whimsical, studious, contemplative expression on his little scarred face. I had the beads. I had the lid to a ceramic coffee bean canister (only the lid – I broke the canister, but kept the lid out in my garden as a ‘decoration’). I had my own beads, some wire, some pretty rocks, and some odd pieces of jewelry (the goldfish).

The wings were simple bead-and-wire construction, glued to the back of the monk fairy. I created a space of land (brown and green) with the beads I already had in my collection. I used Beyond Miray’s beads to create the little pond. Wire and beads, carefully glued into place, created the fountain effect on the coffee canister lid. I poured clear varnish over the floor of the chapel to hold it into place. The goldfish and flowers (beads and wire) were glued to the surface. The fairy and the larger rocks are moveable: I change up the position of the fairy often, just to amuse myself.

The result is not for sale as it has sentimental value. It is also due to the amateur clay fairy and the water-stained terrarium I used. I don’t know what others created with their beads, but I am certain it had to do with actual beading and beadwork, not gluing things into place with varnish. Still, I have been very pleased with the results of this particular fairy house. It reminds me that we can find peace.