Saturday, March 14, 2009


Sometimes I'm convinced that my life exists in a time warp. How else can two weeks vanish in the blink of an eye? Time has never really been on my side, and that seems to be becoming ever more apparent as I grow older.

So what have I been up to in the last few weeks (aside from neglecting my blog)?

A little bit of boating...

Our 17 month old daughter, India, playing Skipper

And a little bit of beading...

An as yet unfinished and unnamed botanical experiment created with RAW (right angle weave)...perhaps "Belindaflora Bigbellyus" would be appropriate?

I finally got my lazy pregnant butt into gear and also started working on my piece for the Dutch Spiral challenge on the Beading Forum. In a moment of beading madness, I decided that it would be a good idea to bead a 3-dimensional tulip.

Have I ever made a 3-dimensional flower before? No.

Have I ever beaded a tulip before? No.

I know the point of a challenge IS to challenge oneself, but sheesh, why do I always set the bar so high?

A tulip is one of those deceptively simple shapes. I thought it was going to be a breeze, but I was kidding myself. Did you ever have to draw a dolphin at school? You think, "A dolphin is a simple shape, how hard can it be to draw?" The answer is HARD! Unless you get the lines and the proportions just so, you end up with a creature which looks more like a hotdog with fins than a dolphin.

I was having the same problem with my beaded tulip. I estimate that I spent more hours unpicking stitches than I did actually stitching them. After a number of prototypes, I think I'm finally on track. My 3D tulip is looking more like a tulip and less like a deflated umbrella having a crisis of identity.

I attempted my first sample of dutch spiral last night and, much to my surprise, I really like it. If it weren't for the challenge, it would no doubt be yet another stitch on my 'must try that one day' list.

In other news, my darling friend Sharon of Mana Moon Studios has bestowed a lovely new award upon me and I haven't had a chance to blog about it yet. I'm sorry Sharon, I haven't forgotten! There is a really nice sentiment behind this award so I will dedicate a whole post to it :)


  1. Oh I know what you mean, things always seem so simple until we sit down and actually try but if anyone can make it work I've no doubt you will and the finish product will be gorgeous!! No rush on the award dear friend, you, the tummy and your wonderful family always come first. ;-)

  2. Do I ever know what you mean, it is like a vortex, vavoom, and away is another precious moment. I have faith in your abilities, and the muses, Belinda. If in a quandry, a ndebele tube of at least 4 sets of 2 stacks, and you can use the top of the tube (i.e sets of 2) to create the petals with peyote leaf shaped things, edge with 15s and Bob is your Tulip. Take it from a Dutchie, they are simple things, most things Dutch are :). I used to do orchids that way, they work a treat if you bend the petals out a bit and create one short lil lip as an orchid has.

    Or use a felt ball as a base, easy to stitch petals to. Oh gotta run, I just had a genius idea. Felt ball, oh man, I wish I had more time.

    [hurricane Bianca hath left the building]

  3. What a nice blog, I haven't done any flowers yet either. I'm kinda of dreading it. I know I have to keep pushing myself, just don't know when I going to do I can't wait to see the finished piece.

  4. Hi Belinda, just checking out the other winners of Sharon's Karma awards and I have to let you know I loved your blog. your work is amazing. Your skipper is so cute, and congratulations on the bump, hope you are keeping well. hugs Margie.

  5. Thanks Sharon :) I've made 3 attempts at writing about the Karma award but the darn HTML gremlins keep raining on my parade...I'm having problems with putting links into my post for some reason *tears hair out in frustration*

    Hurricane Bianca, thank you for the tulip tips! You make it sound so easy :) LOL I've ended up using a combination of brick stitch and odd count peyote. Ndebele would have been easier, but I like doing things the hard way *note sarcastic tone* If I can manage it, I will take a few photos of the tulips and send them to you for your opinion :) What did you end up doing with the felt balls?

    Rachele, thanks for visiting! I've no doubt someone of your ability can tackle anything new ;) I try to make a point of dabbling in at least one new technique when time permits. It's too easy to get caught up doing the same technique over and over. I don't think we should ever stop learning and growing!

    Hi Margie :) Thank you so much for stopping by, your kind words put a smile on my dial :) You're welcome here anytime! Love your blog too ;)

  6. Nothing yet, I am just finishing off an entry to the Toho competition, I made one littly felt ball in a deep purple, but I reckon I need to needle felt some bits on it so it is more like a pod, not a round ball. I like the organic shapes much better than smoothness.

    Oh I just remembered, I have a tute for the orchid, I will dig it up, used to teach it as part of the broadcollar workshops I used to do.

    Can't wait to see your tulip, but I am homesick enough as it is, springtime in Holland is something I really really miss.

  7. "Belindaflora Bigbellyus" ... hahahaha that's funny.

    Belinda ... if anyone can make the flowers work (and if my crap memory is right - you did) I'm sure you can. I am so envious of your imagination and your work. Love your blog!!!

    Did you enter any of your work into the Bead Dreams comp?

  8. B, I can't wait to see your Toho comp entry. It will no doubt be spectacular :) Your felt pod sounds intriguing. Do you make your own felt? I imagine Springtime in Holland is beautiful, I bet you miss it. Do you ever go back to visit?

    Maryanne, thanks for the nice comments! Bead Dreams is a loooong way off for a relative beading newbie like me LOL Perhaps one's something to strive for ;) Best of luck with your entry...your collar is utterly beautiful! You should enter it in the Bead & Gem Comp too ;)

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