Friday, December 29, 2006

Top 10 Bead Items of 2006

This year is almost over, and I've been thinking about what I think the top 10 bead related items of this past year.

Here are mine (in no particular order):

1. Kumihimo. I discovered Japanese braiding at Bead and Button, and have had fun with it ever since! Have you seen my Titania necklace
2. Micromacrame. I picked up the book by Kris Buchanan. The photos and projects were very inspirational. It helps that the C-Lon cord comes in over 50 fantastic colours. It's not the 70's anymore indeed.
3. Bead Embroidery. I taught myself some of the basics, then took a course with Sherry Serafini - who really filled in all the blanks.
4. Cabochons. Now that I know what to do with them (see "Bead Embroidery" above), I love them. I have several awaiting some free time to make into wonderful jewellery. Here's my latest
5. Polymer Clay. I have a love-hate relationship with polymer clay. I finally tried it this year and found it in some ways as difficult as oil painting - I never got the hang of colour mixing - they all came out brownish grey, no matter what I did. Anyways, I'm perservering, and I certainly have some great ideas - just not the skills - yet - but I think the learning curve may be quite steep. That said, you should see the gorgeous polymer clay beads I've got from the wonderful Barbara Colautti.
6. Dichroic Aikos. I finally broke down and bought some.
7. Treenway Silks, especially the Montano series. Great for kumihimo.
8. Storing By Colour. I'm experimenting with storing my beads by colour rather than by type. That said, some still end up in their own places - like Swarovki, pearls, etc. It was really tough putting the Czech 10's in the same place as the Japanese 11's.
9. Creative Bead Weaving by Carol Wilcox Wells. This isn't a new discovery, but rather a visitation with an old friend. Considered to be the beader's bible by many - and it really stands the test of time. Can only be outdone by The Art and Elegance of Beadweaving, also by Wells.
10. Nancy Zellers great new website: A very sophisticated and perfect site with lots of eye candy and useful information.

Happy New Year everyone.


Sunday, December 17, 2006

Raku Cabochon Pendant

A wonderful raku cabochon by Vera Romoda - bead embroidered, embellished and fringed to make a pendant. This piece is huge! The cabochon is 2.75" (65mm) in diameter. I call it "A Bird in the Hand" (there are 2 other birds in the fringe).

Friday, November 24, 2006

Christmas Bells Bracelet

Something that started as a practice strip - ended up being a Christmas themed bracelet. I was playing with 2 drop peyote, practicing with some left over 6/0 mix. When I ran out, I switched to 11/0, which meant it was now 4 drop peyote! When I finally ran out of beads altogether, I thought the strip could be a bracelet. Added the toggle and the bells, a voila, a Christmas bracelet.

Martini Olive Bracelet

Name says it all LOL

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Digestive System Model - Polymer Clay

Amazing what you can make with polymer clay. FYI, the stomach is wadded up waxed paper covered in a thin layer of clay.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

David Chatt - A must see

This video is fairly high resolution, so you can watch it full screen - worth it to see the work!
Instructional Bead Video

Fun video, but not what you're expecting!

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Cats in Space

Okay this has nothing to do with beads, I just thought it was hilarious!

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Polymer Clay for Fun

My first polymer clay beads made into bracelets with wood beads and spacers. These are actually the first I've made on my own - I've made better in the two classes I've taken LOL.

I'm hoping to make this into a class for kids at Bead Junction- hence the bright colours and large sizes.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Chinese Lantern Necklace

After I made this necklace, I thought it looked like Chinese lanterns - maybe I was inspired by the Chinese Lantern Festival at Ontario Place even though I haven't seen it yet! I used a hand dyed silk cord, felt and satin cord wrapped beads. I put the beads on headpins with 6/0's at the bottom and made the standard loops at the top. I threaded the loops onto the cord, and tyed a loose overhand knot to keep their spacing. Of course, all these items are available at the Bead Junction.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Sunday, April 30, 2006

David Chatt, Two Hands...

Okay, yes I bought it. I'll let you know what I think when I get it. Go to his site if you want to buy one too.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

This week's necklace - liquid silver and swarovski - what could be better :)

My Ring

This photo was taken about a year ago when I was working at U of T. They needed a picture of an architect's ring - and they happened to find me. Anyways, back in December we had a "Favourite Jewellery" event at the Toronto Bead Society - who ever wanted to could talk about their favourite piece and it didn't have to be beaded. Anyways, this was mine because I earned it!

Thursday, April 13, 2006

River Rose's 5 Sided Pendant

****UPDATE***** We now have River's pattern for this lovely piece at the store

I've finished River Rose's 5 Sided Pendant, here's the photo:

It's done in brick stitch, and I made 2 variations.

1) I hinged the lid
2) I used drops in the picot at the lid bottom edge.

My advice? Don't do the above! The combination of the hinge and the drops means it is a little complicated to close the lide without catching up some of the suspension strands.

It is quite a lovely objec though - kudo's to River!

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

I am Shetland Wool (seems right for a Heather)

Just a bit of fun - a quiz to find out what type of wool you are. Turns out I'm not cushy mohair, but sensible shetland wool... my Aberdeen nany would be proud. It says, "You are a traditional sort who can sometimes be a little on the harsh side. Though you look delicate you are tough as nails and prone to intricacies. Despite your acerbic ways you are widely respected and even revered. "

Try it yourself: