Thursday, October 12, 2017

Beads in my Bedroom

Except on paper (sketching), I had never beaded in my bedroom. But last Monday (October 9th 2017). I decided to go there for it is the only quiet place to film a video explaining how to do fast peyote with increases, using two threads. I talked about this method on Facebook, and one of my beady friends said that she was waiting for somebody to show it to her for she didn't get it right. So I thought that it would be nice to show it to all. It is a cool, fast method, and spares the tendons.


You'll see that I am far from being a pro at making videos. There are a couple of big sighs in it, because I have difficulties saying things right - I've always had, also in writing: I often say later what should come first, and vice versa. I also tend to mix up 'stitch-string-add' etc. Because of fibro, I forget to mention things I wanted to mention... and count the beads more times than shown in the video. This results in a lot of editing in both writing and filming. I hope that you will understand it despite the little cuts.

I am happy with the sound from an avian point of view. My first attempt to film this technique was ruined by a lovely, but deafening Figaro. I love my birds and Figaro and Charly are no exception, but they are noisy beasts. Seeing that I can't ask them to shut up, the bedroom appears to be the right place. It is actually really odd to not hear them at all when I am not talking. Next time I think that I'll leave the door open to at least hear them a little bit. I miss them :D

Figaro, Fluff' the Puff', and Miss White, sun bathing.

They are quiet at night, but then I still can't film because I'd need spots and those of you who know me, know that I can't use spots - also not for photography. The natural light in the bed room appears to be good enough - there is a huge window, letting lots of light enter the room without direct sun light.

Now there must be a fire polished bead somewhere in a corner of the room, because I am sure that I heard it fall. It makes a different sound than a seed bead, and seeing that I was adding those lovely faceted bead to the belly of my fish, there were FP on the BOI-board.

So now you may ask what fish?

May I present to you Takato, named after his 22cm real-life model, a big oranda living with us:

Takato and Takato
It is a purse that came together completely naturally. I had a little purse that I kept in my stash to reuse to make this fish. It had a very precise idea in mind since I wrote the book Diamond Weave (DW) but never got to make it. Then one day I saw Julia Turova's beautiful bead-knitted frog and it reminded me of my project.


I didn't want to bead crochet or knit. I wanted to use the beautiful pattern I imagined with the Diamond Weave Chinese Coin Motif stitch (variation 10 with Thread Cover Beads - TCB) for the back of the purse. It was a difficult project, but with plenty of "luck" - many things were made without having to undo or redo them, like the fish butt. I can't believe that I made it right immediately, because I actually was like "OMG how am I going to join it all and give that fish a nice shape? And there, a petal initially made for the gill plates that was too small got transformed into a "butt", which even appeared to be the perfect support for the tail. I call this beading with the Universe. Ask and you are answered. The next petals that I made for the gill plates were again too small, so I kept them for the tail. I really had many "how could I do this, improve that", and each time I asked myself, the answer came like magic. Everything fell in place better than I could have imagined. For those who wonder, petals are a two-increase form that is a very versatile component, The free tutorial can be downloaded by those who are part of my "From Petal to Pod Group" on Facebook - if you want to be part of the group, please drop me a note.



The head, tail and gill plates are peyote petals. The pectoral fins are pear-shaped peyote, based on a Monte Carlo Bracelet (a design by Gerlinde Lenz tutified by me at her demand), the pelvic fins and dorsal fin are made with herringbone with increases and last but not least, the tiny little anal fin was made with brick stitch. The bezels around the eyes were made with circular peyote.





I also used Diamond Weave - the full hexagonal variation no. 3 with TCB - for the belly, which I embellished with a myriad of fire polished beads (which was something I had the feeling it was begging for repeatedly, lol).

Beading this purse was something awesome. I posted in-progress photos on FB and had a myriad of encouragements, which I appreciated very much. It helped keeping the motivation up. It took

11 days of intensive beading
2 days of forced rest, a bit of physio
Orange AB seed beads size 11/0 - 24g.
Red AB seed beads size 11/0 - 21g.
Topaz AB seed beads size 11/0 - 14g.
Dark gold permanent finish seed beads size 11/0 - 12g,
less than 1 g. coral lined size 15/0
less than 1g. 24Kt gold plated size 15/0
2 glass cabs
1 permanent marker, black
1 red coin purse
3 needles (size 11, 12 and 15)
1 bobbin of Hana thread "Gold Fish"

And voilĂ !

With the left over beads I am thinking of beading a lanyard - for the purse frame has some sort of loop for that, a chain tab. But I have to go back to work and write tutorials to add to my shop, for I need to feed my other (real) pets. Did you see that I listed the tutorial for the Pinwheel cuff, and another tutorial for a pretty, dainty bracelet, "Florets"? It is made with the same DW variation as used for the belly of the fish. So fast to make, it will knock your socks off.


I hope to do a tutorial for this, when my video skills and illustration software will have improved, for that are actually the reasons why this and some other designs are still not tutified - like the Samurai Pod and other 3D things. Working hard on it, and the video about fast peyote is part of the learning process.

 




Wednesday, September 13, 2017

National Beading Week & Perlen Poesie

Cosmic spirals
Hello dear friends,

I should take the pen more often, for now I have plenty of exciting news to share with you and for some things, I really am late (and sorry about that). For other things, I had to wait for a green light...

I didn't procrastinate the past months, oh no. I beaded a lot. I studied the behavior of several Cosmic Spirals, using heptagonal Diamond Weave. It seems that it took forever to create the tutorial, but finally it is here! It is some sort of master class, for advanced beaders, and knowledge of Diamond Weave is necessary. If you have never done Diamond Weave before, there are other tutorials in my shop that are less difficult to start with. There also is a free video showing you the basic stitch, available on the FB page of the book, which I made for the second birthday of the book, as well as for International Beading week. I hope that you'll find it inspiring.


International Beading Week, what is that? In July, with National Beading Week (NBW) coming up at the end of the month, we beaders all got excited about the many "bead alongs" organized by talented designers, like the lovely Katie Dean of Beadflower. NBW is a beady celebration taking place the first week of August. It was initiated by the Beadworkers Guild 3 years ago in the UK to bring beading to a broader audience. Lots of free tutorials are offered by designers for this occasion. Among my contacts on FB there were plenty of people not in the UK who also wanted to be part of it, and we thought that it should be International Beading Week. So without further thinking, I created the International Beading Week group on FB for them, to share the fun with the whole world. I also contacted the Beadworkers Guild about it for it is not something separated, it is the same as NBW. Did you know that the Beadworker's Guild is open to members around the world? If you become a member, you will receive their awesome quarterly journal and more. Learn more about it here.

IBW August elements
IBW September elements.
As the Swiss say, the above information comes a bit "like a hailstorm after the grape harvest", but it took much more time and effort to set up the group than I thought it would, and I had many other things to do and write.
However, know that you can become a member of the FB group any time. We are slowly heading towards the 2018 edition of Beading Week by making each month something in the color of the banner. It can be anything. I made peyote hexagons and peyote Yukka flowers. When we'll have all the colors of the banner done, we'll assemble it all and celebrate IBW/NBW 2018. You can participate if you wish. It is fun!

You may also like to read Katie Dean's blog post about IBW/NBW, and visit the dedicated website sponsored by the Beadworkers Guild for more information about the 2017 edition.

Faraday Cuff
And now the news I couldn't tell about earlier: I created a project for the beautiful Magazine Perlen Poesie for the month of September and one for December. Let me present to you the Faraday Cuff, named after Michael Faraday, known as the inventor of electro-plating!! and his famous anti-electromagnetic cage made of metal mesh, that stops radiations / emisions.

It is a bracelet with beautiful Art Deco flair, made with a Diamond Weave octagon-stitch. I hope that you will love making it, especially those of you who have so many bugle beads and who told me that there are not enough patterns using them ;-).

I will list my own tutorial for the Faraday Cuff on my website in November. In my tutorial it is explained in my style, and in the Perlen Poesie issue of September, you will find it with their explanations in their style. Note that is in good company.

Perlen Poesie no. 34
Perlen Poesie is a beautiful beading magazine available in German and in English. The two founders of the magazine, Andrea and Freddie Ott, travel around the world to meet with beady people and discover everything beady to share it with us later in their columns. In this number (#34), the wonderful Nadya Gerber is in the spotlight, and her cover project is awesome. In addition to that, there are many other talented artists who designed beautiful projects for this edition. I really love the name of this magazine, because when you think about it, this is exactly what we make. Poetry. Poetry with beads. We often tell stories with our beadwork, and this as beautifully as possible, exactly like a poet artfully tells stories with beautiful rimes.

Now the most exciting news: Andrea and Freddie came to meet this crazy bird, fish and bead aficionada that I am, in my old flat here in Switzerland... They are totally adorable. We talked and laughed and had coffee and cake and I showed them my creations and how I work. And we talked some more. They took plenty of photos and ... 
... drum roll ...

The lovely Andrea and Freddie Ott sandwiching me :D
in December you will be able to read their article about yours truly!

There are no words to express how much this honors me, but let me try to describe it: being on the cover of this magazine is like having your very own star on Hollywood Boulevard! I have sort of an "I can't believe that it is true" feeling. It's a dream!


About the project in the December issue I cannot reveal more but one thing: what you will learn from the Faraday bracelet will be helpful for the next project. ;-)
Happy beading!!