Bead Embroidery: What the heck is it?

When I talk about bead embroidery, I’m normally discussing the intuitive type. However, that’s not the only art form out there! Image – Robin Atkins Where did bead embroidery originate? I’m sure that there are readers that will know more than I do on this subject, so I hope that those people (and you know who you are), pipe up with a little more information. I’d like to start with a definition according to Wikipedia: “Bead embroidery is a type of beadwork that uses a needle and thread to stitch beads to a surface of fabric, suede, or leather. Bead …

Autumn Sparkles: Reflections on the season!

Though later than normal, autumn sparkles if you take a good look around you! I need to talk about beads, but I also want to talk about autumn leaves. Couldn’t this post be about both? I rarely work in autumn colours, but I actually created an entire Bead Journal Project (BJP) series, working with fallen leaves from 2014. I collected, pressed, and bead embroidered a series of 12 leaves (actually 13, but I didn’t like one of them). I’m really a blue/green type of girl, but I did slip in a couple of fall colours! All suitable for pendants, or …

Peyote Stitch: A dream of a stitch!

I must admit that peyote stitch is my favourite bead weaving stitch! I adore the simplicity of this stinking stitch! Believe it or not, I actually followed the rules, in the early days! The three bracelets shown below, illustrate the start of my addiction! The one with the bugle beads, was made in a class I took with Marilyn Parker & Maureen Warland (George Brown College), many, many years ago. I ripped that sucker out, many times, before finally getting with the program!!!! I did make one more bracelet, of this type, before vowing never again! Heh, heh, ladies…but I …

September 2018 Bead Mat Update: A study in contrasts!

When I started thinking about my September 2018 Bead Mat Update, I thought that I really hadn’t accomplished much this month. But I was wrong! During the “Back to Class” event, earlier this month, I played with the Freeform Peyote Bracelet, that I had started in my last class. I need to decide on a closure of some type. I think one of my bead embroidered buttons, will finish it off nicely. Rose Gold Plated Hematite rounds, pair nicely with these Czech 6/0’s, to make a simple necklace. This one is around 30″ long, and will look maaavelous dahling, with …

Beads and Felt: A sumptuous affair!

You don’t know what you’re missing, if you’ve never worked with beads and felt! Okay, beads on their own are undoubtedly delicious, but there’s an added something special, when you stitch them onto felt. No, not craft felt silly, but richly textured wool felt! It’s absolutely delightful!!! I love working with wool felt! It started off with a simple, wet felting play date with friends! Then I combined some of those pieces with fibre, beads, free motion, and hand stitching. A few were sold, but others remain in my possession. Pre-beading obsession, if you please! This piece of felt was …

The Perils of Collecting!

Here’s the thing about the perils of collecting, they’re impossible to resist!!! Once a collector, always a collector! I’m a collector, and not a hoarder!!! A collector is “A person who collects things of a specified type, professionally or as a hobby”. But a hoarder, according to the Urban Dictionary is “A word that describes anyone that feels the need to find, collect, keep, pack ANY and EVERYTHING because they do not know how to throw things away”. Okay, I’m one of those people who do have a hard time believing that enough is enough! Yes, I did sew clothing …

Gifts from the beach: Traditional repurposing!

What do you think of when I say gifts from the beach? No, I don’t mean those expensive, kitschy items that you bring back as presents. I mean the real gifts! I wish I was close enough to the ocean, to say that my gifts from the beach, included a myriad of shells, but no, not this girl! As I live close to a very large lake (Lake Ontario), my gifts include beach glass, driftwood, and stones! Not only tangible gifts, but how about the gift of peace, sunshine, seabirds, exercise, fresh air, and serenity? I find beach walking to …

August 2018 Bead Mat Update: Just playing around!

I almost hate to write my August 2018 Bead Mat Update, because that means that the summer is almost over. It’s still stinking hot in Toronto, but I wonder how long that will last? Kids go back to school, adults breath a sigh of relief, traffic jams increase, and the bead goes on!!! BeadFX customers start gearing up for the holidays (I can’t believe that I just wrote that), and the workshop season shifts into high gear (our Back To Class Open House is on September 8th)! It’s still warm outside, but we’re all itching for a change of pace. …

Bead Mixes: A recipe in creativity!

If you like leftovers, you’ll love bead mixes (also known as bead soup)! What do you do, when you’ve finished a project? Some of you choose to re-sort them, but my preference is to jumble them up into a pile! I love to make bead mixes out of them, corralled in small containers, then saved for rainy days! Or, should I say new projects!!! Starting a bead embroidery, or freeform peyote project, requires a combination of new, and stash seedbeads. I add a dash of accent beads, then pour small, tidy piles of beads onto the bead mat. I don’t …

What does imagination look like?

Ask me a direct question about my imagination, and I guarantee that I’ll be at a loss to explain it! Imagination, and creativity seem to come easy to me, but I’m not the only one! I call myself an artist, because that’s a label that I was given many years ago, in my fibre art days. Creativity and imagination cannot be separated, and we are all artists! Imagination is not part of some secret club! Own it! You were born with it!! I remember a story my mother used to tell, about when I was a toddler. She said that …