Skylar Bre'z and Jaynee Michaels of
Mucha's Surprise. This custom ordered necklace features one of BrisingBeads special art glass cabochons, which is then embellished with bead embroidery in turquoise and hints of orange. The 6mm turquoise rounds set off the artwork perfectly.
Skylar Bre'z and Jaynee Michaels have been friends for over twenty years.
They work together
to create striking and beautiful jewelry, using bead embroidery, gemstones and found objects. Skylar is also a doctoral student in History, at Western Michigan University. Jaynee is finishing her Masters in Anthropology.
BrisingBeads Designs have been worn by Las Vegas entertainers and well-known musicians, as well as businesswomen, teachers and CEOs. Necklaces have been sold in galleries throughout the U.S. Skylar has had work published in Belle Armoire magazine and frequently participates in online
beading challenges and bloghops.
BrisingBeads' Featured Dakota Stones Pieces:
Ancient Artifact. This large collar collage
necklace was the result of a bead soup
challenge. It mixes an old ceramic Buddha
with an ammonite cabochon, a carnelian
cabochon, art glass, copper, turquoise,
amber chips, tiger eye rounds, snakeskin
jasper rounds, horn, sandalwood beads,
and seed beads in various sizes.
Lots of sparkle in this necklace!
I mean, lots! Three 40mm cabochons - one
pink crazy lace agate and two gray crazy
lace agates, are surrounded by silver
rondelle and silver bicone chinese crystal.
Black, pink, and gray seed beads accent
the embroidery work.
An Interview with Skylar Bre'z and Jaynee Michaels of BrisingBeads: * Do you have a method or source you look to use for inspiring your designs?
* How often do you work on your jewelry designs?
For inspiration, we often go outside and putter in the garden. Mother Nature
really sets a great
example for patterns and texture and color combinations. Classic artwork is another inspiration
- Mucha, Van Gogh, anything art nouveau. We also use a lot of found objects
in the bead
embroidery, which pairs well with stones.
Jewelry design is a constant. Both of us keep a basket nearby, with individual projects in
different stages. Since we're both college students, often there's a layer of beads, then a layer
of homework, then another layer of beads on the worktable. The beadwork keeps us sane.* How would you describe your design style or technique?
The design style is pretty eclectic. We're proud that in over 20 years, we've never duplicated a
design. Skylar's designs lean towards the bohemian - asymmetrical, funky, playing with unusual combinations of stones and materials. Jaynee's designs are more classic - fine details, pattern repetitions, color coordinated. Usually we consult each other, but work independently. Though Skylar would gladly let Jaynee do every bit of fringing!
* Do you work in any other mediums beside jewelry design?
Jaynee is a long time master of crochet and detailed clay painting. She dreams of getting back * What is your favorite stone to work with and why?
into pottery. Skylar plays with collage and quilting, which she wants to add to bead embroidery.
Her recent obsession with felting may allow that to happen.
Jaynee's favorite stone to work with is anything in the quartz family
combinations within the stones. Skylar's favorite (at the moment) is turquoise, because its
bright blue reminds her of the desert sky. And turquoise goes so well with so many others.* What is your favorite shape/ size to work with and why?
Our beadwork is very dependent on seed beads, which go wonderfully with stone chips of
fabulous either as embroidery embellishments or neckstrap beads. Skylar loves working with * If you could pick one person living or not to wear your jewelry who would it be and why?
Great question! As a women's historian, Skylar has a long list of women she'd love to see in a
: Alice Paul, Eleanor Roosevelt, Maya Angelou, Gloria Anzaldua, but it'd be
most wonderful to have her grandmothers see and wear her work. They were both handwork
artists and continue to be a great source of inspiration. Jaynee would like for anyone of Native
American heritage to wear her designs, because of their reverence for the nature of the stones
and their long connection to intricate beadwork.
More of BrisingBeads Work with Dakota Stones (Click Images to Enlarge):
Woodland Brooch. This
stunning piece of Russian
Lace agate pendant needed
the perfect setting. So two
wooden stick cutouts were
added as a frame, along with
some coppery and gold leaves. Shows how versatile
pendant gemstones can be.
This beautiful kyanite
cabochon is paired
with layers and layers of
Even some pearls!
Kyanite 20 mm flat rounds set
off the neckpiece.
This necklaces mixes matte
seed beads, crystals (in cream and kelly green), rainforest
jasper cabochon and a
bloodstone cabochon, with
a healthy dose of rainforest