Jewelry Inspired by Irish Landscape

necklace design

Ron Rock of Swarovski’s 40 Shades of Green necklace

When Swarovski published their 2014 calendar, they included a stunning jewelry design project for each month.  The design for the month of March, titled “Forty Shades of Green” and designed by Ron Rock, is a sparkling necklace that features over 100 Swarovski crystals dangled from beautiful Tierracast cable chain.  He used round and shamrock shaped crystals in Dark Moss Green, Peridot, Fern Green and Emerald.  He added a fun splash of yellow-gold with Sunflower color crystals as well.

Here at Auntie’s we designers found ourselves very inspired by Mr. Rock’s design, as well as his use of the title “Forty Shades of Green.”  We decided to explore the concept of 40 Shades of Green and use it to allow our creative minds to flourish.  Shanna Steele, Karla Schafer, Judy Mertz and myself have designed custom color palettes to provide inspiration to our Auntie’s Beaders.  We have also designed a project using each color palette to demonstrate its use.  We will publishing the color palettes and projects once a week for the four weeks of March (if you would like to receive them in your inbox, please subscribe to our newsletter).

A little history about Forty Shades of Green

Irish Landscape

The beautiful hills of Ireland

Each one of our designers immediately thought of the book “Fifty Shades of Grey” when we heard this title (let that give you a little insight into the kind of reading you could catch us doing!) but rest assured the phrase and the concept date back much, much further than the steamy romance novel.  People have been using this phrase to describe the breath-taking green landscape of Ireland for hundreds of years.  Michele Erdvig of the blog IrelandYes! was actually able to identify 78 distinct shades of green in her stunning photos of Irish hills and plant life.  Check out her blog post; the photos she took are bound to inspire your next beading design.

Part of the reason for Ireland’s lush landscape is the mild climate.  The weather there is known to be  unpredictable and ever-changing, but only within a small window.  In fact, the average temperature is a mild 50 degrees.  Influenced by activity in the Atlantic Ocean, Irish weather is never too cold or too hot for the greenery to flourish.  Johnny Cash was so famously impressed with the landscape of Ireland when he visited in the 1960s that he penned the song titled Forty Shades of Green and sang, “Again I want to see and do, The Things we’re done and seen, Where the breeze is sweet as Shalimar, and There’s forty shades of green.”

Color Palettes and Design Ideas for our Beaders

We are constantly drawing on nature to inspire our color choices.  We have taken the many shades of green in the Irish landscape and paired them with metals that compliment them in order to create 4 distinct color schemes for you to design from:

Brights and Neon Greens paired with Gunmetal (color palette and project officially published 3/3)

Kelly or “True” Green paired with Silver  (color palette and project officially published 3/10)

Emerald and Dark Greens paired with Gold  (color palette and project officially published 3/17)

Olivine and Patina paired with Antique Brass and Antique Copper  (color palette and project officially published 3/24)

We are very excited to share our Irish, green themed designs.  In the mean time, I have found some existing projects that utilize the color green to share with you below.  Click the photo to visit the project page which includes instructions and a materials list. Hyped about St. Patrick’s Day and designing with the color green?  Check out, The Top 10 St. Patrick’s Day Jewelry Designs.

Green Leather Bracelet

Gone Green Leather Bracelet Project

Karla's necklace project, "Flora and Fauna"

Flora and Fauna Necklace Project

A Rose Is Still a Rose Necklace Project

On the Wild Side Peyote Bracelet Project

own pendant
Brick Stitch Owl Pendant Project




Kelly Henderson

Kelly Henderson is a jewelry designer and editor of the Auntie's Beads blog. When she's not beading, you might find her chasing her one-year-old son, Sawyer, watching bad reality TV or reading a good book.

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