Monday, 4 March 2013

bangle tower

Bangle tower
In my last post I was pondering out loud about how the zeitgeist of beading seeps in, invited or not, and you probably picked up on a slight confidence wobble. This week I've been wrestling a new design into shape, which I'll show and share soon...
but have to keep under wraps just a weeny bit longer... it's got six legs is all I can say.

Meanwhile, I thought I'd take a bit of time out and review and rummage in the beadwork box.
This  picture is of a stack of pieces from different moments in my beady life. From the top, three coral reef inspired bangles, which are layers of peyote and fringing on a loom woven base. They were made for an exhibition way back in 2004. Made using size 9 Czech seed beads, they are nicely big and chunky and go from pale at the edges to dark in the centre.

Hollow Netted beads
The biggest part of the stack is of bristling Sea Urchin bangles, the patterns for which appear in the Bead Net book on CD, which was originally written in 2007, and is still available.
I continue to wear these and it's fun to have complete strangers ask if they can stroke them! They are completely hollow, self supporting netted structures. I so loved trying all the different netting techniques from around the world when I was planning and writing. These hollow beaded beads are another project from the same book...

Between them is a ribbed bracelet, a mix of netting and right angle weave called Fandango bangle. This one has been worked in all sorts of amazing colour combinations by friends and students, much to my envy. At the very bottom is the good old Cellini Spiral, which I made not long after I'd started beading, it took an absolute age to complete, I had to go back for more beads, so it changes colour about two thirds round and weighs a ton to wear! It definitely taught me that densely textured beadwork was not going to ever be a quick fix hobby and to always buy more beads than you think you'll need!

So, did this trip down beading memory lane have any outcomes... Well in a funny way it did, it reminded me about how I still really love playing with the structure of beadwork, about how much fun it can be mixing techniques. Looking at more recent work I can see that these things are still true, and that I am happiest when 'drawing' with beads to make creatures and flowers, foliage and insects.
Mojo is back!