Butterfly Jewelry Celebrates Spring

In my corner of Texas, spring hit with a big burst last week. Each day as I walk around the yard I experience fresh fragrances, new blooms, budding new growth, butterflies floating through the air and nectaring on the new flowers. Butterflies hold such strong affirmations and uplifting messages for me.

sterling silver butterfly pendant with rejoicing figure Nancy Denmark

"Be Ye Transformed" Sterling Silver Butterfly Pendant

One of my earliest symbol designs was inspired by Romans 12:2, Be Ye Transformed, a butterfly pendant with a rejoicing figure as her body. This verse and story accompanies this jewelry design: “…and be not conformed to this world; but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind…” Romans 12: 2
When we allow ourselves to be transformed by Christ, he gives us wings with which we can soar to new heights. I designed this butterfly with a rejoicing figure for its body to symbolize that joyous transformation.

The Be Ye Transformed butterfly has always been a piece I like to wear when memorializing a departed loved one as a reminder to me of their new life of resurrection in Christ. So many friends and customers have shared stories with me of the healing powers that butterflies held for them around the death of a loved one. I personally experienced the presence of butterflies in the church yard as my father’s cremains were interred in the memorial garden that had once been my own church day school playground.

silver butterfly necklace

"Spirit Wind Beneath My Wings" Sterling Silver Butterfly Pendant

My most recent butterfly jewelry design H61, Spirit Wind Beneath My Wings, was the first piece of jewelry I designed from my new country home studio. As I worked to create this design, I watched butterflies dancing by my studio window, affirming my new creative life in a new setting. This symbolized for me the transformative power of new creative beginnings in my tranquil country studio setting. This jewelry design comes with the message: The butterfly is a living parable of the promise of resurrection as the caterpillar (Jesus) goes into the cocoon (tomb) and emerges from the chrysalis (leaving the old behind) as a butterfly (made new in the risen Christ) to soar free. The butterfly also symbolizes my freedom in Christ today on Earth, as I lay my burdens at His feet and soar light and free as a butterfly with the wind of the Holy Spirit beneath my wings. “If anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation; the old has passed; behold, the new has come.” 2 Corinthians 5:17

Diocese of Texas ECW Centennial Butterfly

Diocese of Texas ECW Centennial Butterfly

My other butterfly jewelry design H53, embodies the movement and activity of the butterfly to symbolize women in action. This was designed for a centennial celebration of a church organization of our diocese, The Episcopal Church Women or ECW. This design features a woman as a butterfly, with an “ECW” monogram on her wings. She is a woman on the move, heading into the future with joyful anticipation.

Click any image here to link to more information with prices and purchase details on my website.

May we all anticipate and embrace the uplifting symbols of spring, rejoicing in the transformative powers of our faith. There is a new creation, the old has passed and the new has come!

Color Makes My Heart Sing

“Why do two colors, put one next to the other, sing? Can one really explain this? no. Just as one can never learn how to paint.” ~Pablo Picasso

I am committed to working on the photography of my sterling jewelry and updating my web galleries featuring it, but after spending a week photographing sterling silver on gray I was in need of a color injection. Over the weekend I squeezed in a little bead stringing. Working with polymer clay and beads adds color to my life literally and figuratively. It is hard to verbally explain how much color feeds my spirit. Color has the power to lift me in indescribable ways. How does color speak to you?

I state on my website in many different ways how therapeutic these varied art forms are for me as I playfully experiment with a continuum of color and texture combinations. The trails of inspiration that lead to the colors I combine are rather endless. This color combination was inspired by one glass bead I worked with many months ago. The solid color polymer clay beads lend opportunity for me to feature some fun textures. My random assortment of beads I string with them just add to the play of texture and color.

Click the photograph below for more info on my website.

textured polymer clay beaded necklace

PURPLE, GREEN, TURQUOISE, BLUE, & GOLD SHORT BEAD SET

The Light Of My Life

From today’s lectionary readings on this 8th Sunday after Epiphany “…He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of the heart” ~1 Corinthians 4:5

Epiphany has always been one of my favorite seasons on the Church calendar. It suits my own personal Christian focus on the Light of Christ. I have preferred to focus on the Light and therefore not worry much about the darkness. If I look towards and follow the Light, then the darkness is behind me. This focus propels me forward in life rather than wasting energy turning backwards to watch my tail or fretting about the darkness behind me. Maybe it is just optimism vs. pessimism but from my faith perspective I see it as light vs. darkness.

Maybe my love of the season of Epiphany has some relationship with my love of my own Church of the Epiphany as my parish home. Many years ago I designed these pieces inspired by my Church of the Epiphany. I titled them “The Star of My Life Is Jesus”.

The LIGHT rules!
Click on photos below for more information on my website.

Epiphany star crosses

The Star Of My Life Is Jesus

Epiphany Star Crosses Side View

The Star of My Life Is Jesus (side view)

From The Other Side

Fall shows merged into Christmas and Christmas merged into prep for 2 big church conventions in February. Now I write from the other side of this run. I have committed myself to making website improvements this year, especially to the galleries featuring my Christian symbol jewelry. Today marks one week after my last big show and I am happy to report the website is already seeing many improvements as I rephotograph most all of my silver symbol jewelry. Stay tuned as I share this body of work in a new light.

To view the web gallery click the image below.

Christian Symbol Jewelry

Web gallery snapshot of my "From The Heart Line" Christian Symbol Jewelry

Hoping my junk may shine today…

Shine In My Heart, being a prism of The Light… This same theme still seems to be surfacing daily this week and I hope it is there at some level 365 days a year.

As I was posting my morning facebook status with my cup of espresso (my morning ritual)… I was led to look up the word transfiguration to see if I was using it correctly and I loved the definition and example I found. Dictionary: “a complete change of form or appearance into a more beautiful or spiritual state: in this light the junk undergoes a transfiguration; it shines”.

The word transfiguration usually brings to my mind a very out of this world happening as I would imagine the Transfiguration of Christ. I loved seeing the word used in such an ordinary way in this dictionary. So my thought and focus for the day became a hope that I may be transfigured in some way. May my junk… my personal baggage, my woes, my heartbreak, my weaknesses… somehow be made to shine today.

To me, this means filtering everything in my life through that prism in my heart, which can make the ugliest of things shine. That is the transformative nature of my life of faith in Christ Jesus. Everything may be made new, redeemed, filtered by that prism, darkness made light.

jewelry polishing

Finishing & Polishing

One of the tasks facing me today is to finish and polish some of my silver castings for a show this weekend. The process involves bringing rough and dull silver castings to a bright, shiny, lustrous state of polished sterling silver. The theme and metaphor is obvious there! This finishing process is a mundane, repetitive, and dirty task that I honestly do not like to do. I have found ways to find some joy in it. As I think negatively about the drudgery of the job, I try to turn those negative thoughts around and pray for the individual who will eventually be wearing the piece I am polishing. Today as I polish, I will pray the wearer may experience the transformative power of our Lord in a personal way in his/her own life. I will pray that their “junk” may be made to shine. May my own personal junk be redeemed as I pray for others today.

Shine on prisms! Show your light today!

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