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?