Sunday, June 8, 2014

Bead and Button 2014. Part 1

I am home from the Bead and Button Show, one tired beader.  It was a wonderful 6 days filled with beads and friends.   I took 5 classes, 4 of which were intermediate bead weaving projects, and one advanced project.   So now I have 5 beginnings of projects to complete, plus 2 kits that I purchased. (actually, I still have 2 kits bought last year that I did not even start, but don't tell anyone.)

Day One was Cascading Leaves with Leslie Frazier.
I saw this project last year at the show at the Meet the Teachers night, but Leslie could not sell the kit until after she had taught the class, so I could not get it.

I knew that  really wanted to take a class with her, and it was difficult to choose which of her classes I wanted to take, for Leslie's work is beautiful and elegant.  I finally did settle on Cascading Leaves (my motto:  Be true to your first choice)

The leaves are a beautifully formed using herringbone stitch, and they are attached to a light and airy netting to form a lariat that can be 'interwoven' by the leaves.

The picture shows my bead mat during class.  I have one leaf completed, and am working on the second.  So far I have four leaves completed, and the netting done between them.   As I am this far into this project, I think I will probably finish this one first.


Day two was Duomos Romantico, with my personal beading hero, Marcia DeCoster.   I took the Master Class with Marcia last year, and I just love her sensibilities and easy elegance.
Marcia made me do my homework.  The base of this lovely bracelet is made in cubic right angle weave (CRAW)....NOT my strongest stitch!  It seems I have to relearn it each and every time I use it.

BUT..I finally GOT IT!!!  Something clicked this time, and I am now confident using CRAW.
 This picture shows my bead mat during class.  I have completed two of the components, and have them attached.  By the end of class, I had three done and attached.   Maybe I want to finish this bracelet first..... More to come.                             

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Adventures with a Loom

I think it was three years ago that I purchased a loom.  Not just a simple wooden loom, no, not me!  For my first loom, I bought a Mirrix.

Now to be fair, I did purchase it because I was taking a class at BeadFest using one.  I had really wanted to learn how to loom, and thought it would be a quick way to make bracelets.  The bracelet we made in class was not very attractive, though.  Undaunted, I did make another upon my return home.  It is very nice, and I get lots of compliments each time I wear it.   I then put the loom away and never used it again.   Until today.

For those of you who are not familiar with the Mirrix loom, it is a no warp ends loom.  Instead of all those pesky warp threads left at the ends to deal with, there are only two which are easily woven into the beadwork.

I warped the loom with C-Lon and made a bracelet like the one which Olga Mihaylova teaches here at Crystal Bead Bazaar.  Instead of crimping the clasp onto the warp threads, I wove them in, then attached my clasp with loops of 11/0 seed beads as one would using off loom techniques.  

And here is my finished project!

I just have one question.  How many bracelets does one have to make to justify spending $160 on a loom?

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

More on B&B Show

I am now back in the store and my magical eight days of bead heaven are over. But what an eight days I had!!

I took a ton of classes, but anyone who knows me knows that I am results oriented, and will finish every one of them. As I do, I will post my finished piece.

First batter up...Sherry Serafini. That kick off class was just fun!

We made a rockin' leather bracelet. I actually got that finished before I returned!

Sherry is a true bead rock star, and we are so lucky to have this treasure in the Pittsburgh area.

I am now blogging from my smartphone. Sorry I didn't figure out this option til I got back, but not bad for an old broad!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Saturday, June 8, 2013

The Wall

I love to bead.   Simple as that.   I could bead everyday, all day long.   So I thought.

Yesterday, after six straight days of seed bead classes, I hit The Wall.   As in, 'the beading wall'.   I could not do a thing.   Couldn't find my step up in tubular peyote, could not read and comprehend directions, could not pick up the proper beads, simply could not bead.

Everyone needs to know their limitations.   Now I know mine.

Funny thing, the three other gals in my class who had been in my master class experienced the same thing.   We could not do a thing right.   We had  hit 'The Wall'.

Not that I didn't get anything done.   I did learn a new to me stitch, the Albion stitch.   And I am well on my way to making a beautiful necklace.   But, man, did I do a LOT of frog stitching!!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Bead and Button Show Update

Today was my last day of Master Class with Marica DeCoster.   It was marvelous!!   Everything I had hoped it would be.    The theme of the class was 'Playing with Possibilities" and that is exactly what we did.   Marcia had a playground of sorts for students to experiment and design with,  consisting of various beady combinations of five different components.   We used them to come up with our own designs, photographed them, then started making our own components to create with.  

I found as I worked on each component, different ways to use them popped into my head.   I have so many ideas!!   In the three days, I designed a pendant, earrings, and an asymmetric necklace.

Tonight we had our graduation dinner.    A very nice way to end a simply wonderful class!!

I am sorry for the lack of pictures, but I am unable to get them onto my blog.   Don't know if is this connection or my computer (probably this computer)   Check out CBB's facebook page to see some of my projects.

Tomorrow....Sonoko Nozue!!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Bead and Button Show: Day One

I made it to Milwaukee!!   It has been a long day, and I am about to turn in, but Day One is in the hopper.

I  met up with some of our customers, three crazy sisters that we all call the Sissies.   Here at the hotel we have a great meeting/mingling/beading area.   I spent a good portion on the afternoon there with the Sissies.   Then my first class.

It was great fun taking my first class from an old friend, Pittsburgh's own Sherry Serafini.   Sherry is a rock star here!!   We worked on a leather and bead embroidery cuff bracelet, Rebel Cuff.  I  am trying to add a photo, but no luck, and I need to get to bed.   Master Class with Marcia De Coster tomorrow.   Good night!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Playing with Leather

As I mentioned in my previous blog, I purchased some fabulous leather from Mood Fabric in NYC when I was recently there.   I finally got around to playing with it a bit.   OK, I had a LOT to do in the store.   All those beady purchases weren't going to get priced and placed on the sales floor by themselves!

I wanted to stay pretty simple with my first venture with the leather, so I envisioned a fairly simple cuff with a bead embroidered cab.   I found an interesting druzy (from CBB, of course!) and went from there.

I chose an almost metallic finish black leather for the cuff, and kept it all in grays and gunmetal.     The edging is done in a steel color charlotte to give it an industrial feel.   I backed it with another piece of leather, suede side out for wearing comfort, and added two snaps for the closure.

I LOVE the way it turned out!!   It was easy enough to do the embroidery right on the leather, and even though this one was thin, I did not need to back it with any Lacy's; the second piece of leather for the backing gave it enough body.

Now my little brain is swimming in ideas for more leather cuffs.   I had better find myself some more snaps this weekend.....