Working with paper, metal, fibre and beads: An artist’s delight!

I woke up thinking about paper, metal, fibre and beads! What did you wake up to? Isn’t it funny how often dreams can trigger new directions in our work?

Okay, full disclosure! I spotted something on Pinterest, that caused me to get sucked into the rabbit-hole, and explore new (to me) options. Unfortunately, I lost my reference photo, but that doesn’t matter, because it got me to thinking about utilizing a combination of paper, metal, fibre and beads in some of my future work (the following photo of my cuffs, includes paper, metal and resin, but that’s not really what I mean).

paper, metal, fibre and beads

Let’s explore the subject a little further! Would it really be possible to combine all four, and still make a cohesive piece of work? Would that be confusing, or just too limiting? Perhaps I might prefer to work with option 1, 2 & 3 in one piece, and then 2 & 4 in the next. Just think of working out all the combinations! I’m exhausted already, but a series of new work, would certainly be exciting!

Mary Hettsmansperger is an artist, I’ve been following for years. I own at least three of her books, and although I haven’t done much work in her style, it’s one that I admire greatly. Mary works mainly in metal (jewelery and weaving) and fibre or natural materials (jewelery and basketry), but it’s interesting to note, that she owns Gallery 64, where you can take classes in jewelry, creative arts, and cooking (now that’s versatile)! A few years back, a friend in Australia, was fortunate enough to take an extended workshop with her (a week-long adventure, if I remember correctly). To say that I was jealous, is an understatement!!! One of her classes, is definitely on my bucket list! (Please note: the following three photos are of Mary H’s work.)

paper, metal, fibre and beads
The fabulous work of Mary Hettsmanperger!
paper, metal, fibre and beads
Another shot of Mary H’s work!
paper, metal, fibre and beads
More of Mary’s fabulous work!

As for the paper and beads, I’ll just need to explore those a little more myself! I might even throw wood, rusty bits, wax, paint, and natural materials into the mix (why limit myself?). What could it hurt, and who knows what will come of it?

More of my locally sourced driftwood!

Apparently, I’m in a wishing and wanting frame of mind! I vow to make paper, metal, fibre and beads, my top priorities, yet still leave room for new ideas (okay, perhaps it’s a wishy, washy frame of mind!). What do you have planned for the rest of the year?


  1. Silvia

    You might have discovered this already, but The Paper Place on Queen Street has a pretty impressive selection of Japanese paper, including a lot of hand silk-screened papers. There are also a lot of textured papers. It takes a long time to go through their sample books.

  2. Hi Silvia! Thanks for the tip! I’ve shopped at The Paper Place for years, and their papers are wonderful! Now do you know about The Japanese Paper Place? They’re the wholesaler, and are open to the public on their Washi Wednesday’s (the last Wednesday of every month). Also, they’ve moved to a new location, further west, and are now open Friday afternoons, as well (although I haven’t managed to make it out there yet). If you’re a paper lover like me, you may be able to find some great deals!!!

    1. Silvia

      I didn’t know they were open to the public at all! When I first discovered them, it was before the fire, before they became a big wholesaler. I was a poor art student, looking for interesting (and less expensive) options for some large projects, and I could always find the coolest things there. I don’t live in Toronto so I’m not often there during the week, but I’ll have to see if I can ever make it there on Washi Wednesday, or a Friday. Thanks for the info!

      1. Anne Marie

        You’re welcome! Let me know what kind of goodies you get. The last time I was there, I actually purchased a roll of expensive paper for quite cheap. I guess they were getting rid of old stock, because the roll actually had some water damage from the fire (but not enough to make it worthless). That was about a year ago, so you know how long it was sitting around in their warehouse.

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