Friday, 27 April 2012

friends and inspiration

I love it when an idea takes flight, this week I caught up with my friend Mary Yaeger who is over in the UK for a flying visit. She has long been a champion of my Albion Stitch books and has written some very flattering articles about my work to help spread the word. We met for the day in Oxford and had the best time catching up.
Mary's Albion Stitch necklace
When beaders meet there is usually the 'baggie' moment, when the serious gossip is done and dusted and we turn to our passion for beading. Mary's baggie was full of some stunning pieces of beading, she has a great eye for the mixing of media, and I just had to photograph this particular confection. Albion Stitch beaded beads with bold accent beads on wire links. Much brighter in real life (I'm using a pocket camera here, in the corner of a cafe... note the instant styling moment on the retro sugar dispenser, haha!)... and I'm always forgetting to re-set the settings.
I love this necklace!!!!

We spent the day in and out of museums, (more posts to follow), discussing the state of beading; the serious business of art in craft, design and development, how to identify the zeitgeist of creative innovation. Is beadwork, craft, art, folk art, none of the above... needing to be one or more of the above... how social media is changing the way craft and creativity is talked about, practiced, explored and exploited...
BUT... and I can totally see how you really had to be there to get even a teeny bit interested... MORE EXCITINGLY....
discussing my trip to L.A and it's environs to do the teaching of the beading an the visiting of the beading stores... hurrah!!!! More on which as the departure date draws nearer.
Venetian glass 'trade' beads

Meanwhile, here, from the Pitt Rivers museum a whole cabinet of our beloved seed bead's ancestors... the Venetian trade beads. The very sample cards that were shown to
the indigenous populace of far flung, soon to be colonies... the source of the pounds of beads traded for silks, spices, furs, pelts, gemstones, minerals and what all else.
The starting point for the very same beaded treasures of Africa, the Americas and beyond, that we now pour over in museum cabinets and at antique fairs.
The original source of the river of beads that flows endlessly around and around the world.
Doh... she's waxing lyrical again, time to go bead!