Friday, February 27, 2009

Back to Beadweaving

Ever feel like you need a change? Or feel the need to get back to basics?

It seems that the bead embroidery bug bit me in a big way last year, and it's all I've been doing since. So I figured it was time to stash away my felt for a while and get back to where it all began...beadweaving.

Bead embroidery has always felt a bit like cheating to me...when you're finished stitching, you sew through to the back of the foundation, tie a knot, and you're done. No-one sees the mess because it's hidden away, conveniently covered up at the back. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE that about bead embroidery! It has limitless applications, and I think I have barely only scratched the surface of what is possible.

Beadweaving, on the other hand, requires a little more thought and skill...knots must be ever so carefully hidden away inbetween beads. And then there's the challenge of weaving the beads together so precisely that no thread shows whatsoever. Ahhh, nothing like the sweet smell of perfection. My work station usually reeks (and sounds) of frustration, but one must have something to strive for, no? ;-)

So this week I've been playing, and dabbling, and learning. Oh, the fun of it all!

I decided to teach myself flat circular peyote stitch. My samples in pretty pastel hues are posted above. I haven't decided what to do with them yet. Perhaps they will end up strung between cascades of brass chain...or woven together en masse for an ever-so-girly piece.

I have also been dabbling in RAW (right angle weave), a stitch which I haven't used a great deal before. So far, I am very happy with the results of said dabbling :-) I can see this becoming a monstrously large and laborious creation. Funny how that seems to happen with everything I make. I think 'easy' and 'simple' were erased from my vocabulary as a child.

What I should be doing right now, is planning and starting on a piece for one of two current challenges on the Beading Forum...a 'Dutch-inspired' piece using dutch spiral, and a piece inspired by the movie 'Tron'. Whether I find the time (or the inspiration) to make a piece for either of these challenges is anyone's guess. I've never tried dutch spiral before (but what a great excuse to learn) and, not being a Sci-Fi fan in the slightest, I've never seen the movie 'Tron'. I've been told to think 'computers', 'futuristic', 'circuit boards', and 'Jeff Bridges in fluoroescent lycra'. Hmmmm...scary.

Right now, I'm just having too much fun playing :o) And I'm amazed by how much one learns just from playing. Ok, well that's my excuse for procrastinating, and I'm sticking to it.


  1. Hi Belinda! I have an award for you.
    Look here

  2. Thank you so much, Anna! That is so kind of you :o) ♥

  3. There are so many things I could comment about here, like how I've tried all of this and failed miserably, how you make it all look and sound so effortless but what sticks in my mind more than anything is the incredible quality of your work. Just how beautiful everything you create truly is!

    That and... would you like some magazines from the U.S. or can you easily buy them? I have loads laying around barely opened with so many seed bead projects and techniques in them. Just wondering. ;-)

  4. I'm red as a lobster right now, really know how to make me blush! LOL Thank you for your lovely and heartfelt comments ♥

    Have you tried beadweaving before? I can't imagine you failing miserably at ANYTHING! Your wirework is phenomenal and so unique...I can't even make a wrapped loop! LOL

    I absolutely LOVE the US beading magazines! In fact, I prefer them to the Australian magazines because they contain more advanced seed bead projects :-) I probably have every B&B and Beadwork magazine published over the last year. Is that excessive? LOL I'm kicking myself that I didn't take out a subscription when the exchange rate was almost dollar for dollar! *doh*

    You're so very sweet to offer...consider yourself hugged! ♥

  5. Excessive, but no! These magazines are necessities, a way of keeping up to date. I suspect if my house ever catches fire, well, the magazines will cause some real issues. The problem with me is that I get so distracted, I can't finish a project to save myself, the ideas keep pouring in.

    The back to basics is a great thought, I like embroidery very much, it is free and it allows you so much freedom. But lately I've been weaving a lot more, like you have. There is a certain structure, like an ant, we gotta do things a certain way with them, hole this way or that way.

    Keep playing and exploring, Belinda.

  6. Ah yes, a necessity for keeping up- to-date...I like that, I will definitely use that as justification ;-) No more magazine guilt!

    You have unfinished projects? Surely not, Bianca! I had always imagined you as a beading fiend who had to bead until the project was completed! Well, I guess we are all guilty of having at least a few UFOs lying around. And in my case, more than a few. Meh.

    I love your latest RAW necklace...utterly beautiful. Getting back to basics (and simply playing) is required from time to time, I think.


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