July 2020 Bead Mat Update: Another mixed bag!

This July 2020 bead mat update, just about knocked me on the head! But how did it get so late in the year, and what will we do when summer is over?

Well, with the heatwave that we’ve been having in Toronto, I’d say that cooler weather will be a welcome change, but then it’s human nature to complain about the weather, no matter what it’s doing. Last year, had so much rain, that at least one of the Lake Ontario beaches was closed, for most of the season. Now we have stinking hot, and a pandemic to deal with. But I still say, that I’m looking forward to Autumn!

My nephew got married on the weekend, but Zoom will never be able to compete with a flight, visiting with family and friends, then a couple of weeks in Vancouver. Sigh! The weather was perfect, the ceremony was lovely, he looked handsome, the bride was beautiful, yet I still wish that I was able to physically be there. However, we’ve been promised a re-do, when all this nastiness is over, so I’ll just need to focus on that.

Now on to my July 2020 bead mat update! I continue to work on my two pandemic projects. My freeform peyote “Dancing” piece stalled a little, while I became a bit obsessed with my “Remnants” scroll. But I’m back on track again!

Here’s my latest photo of my “Dancing” piece! It just keeps growing!!

july 2020 bead mat update
Quite the stash buster, but not really as I’m only using small amounts, of many different beads!

I just realized that I’m completing my “Remnants” scroll in stages. Toronto is only in Stage Two of opening up, but I’ve just completed Stage Three of my scroll. I started with hand stitching fabrics to the front, and back (Stage One), then used free motion machine embroidery, to add a vine (Stage Two), the length of the piece. But that’s not all! I added simple, straight, embroidery stitches (Stage Three), where all of the fabrics joined, now I’ll let it rest for a while.

July 2020 bead mat update
Not one new fabric purchased! Stash, gifts from friends, or leftovers from mask making.

Plans for the future include paint, more hand embroidery, then even a little beading! I guess that’s Stages Four, Five, and Six!! After that, I’ll just need attach it to the wooden spool, then find a place to hang it.

What else do I have to show you in my July 2020 bead mat update? First up, how about my recent experiments with Cyanotype printing? Did you know that this is an old photographic process, and that it was the original sun printing technique? I still have more learning to do, but I’m certainly looking forward to playing a little!

July 2020 bead mat update
July 2020 bead mat update
My plant material was pretty old. I need to forage for new, before I start printing again.

Now how about my latest ‘Doodle Bits’? They’re one of my 2020 Stitch Meditation projects. I still don’t know what I’m going to do with them, but I am still having fun playing with the little bits!

July 2020 bead mat update

Then how about a little paper collage, mixed in with watercolour paint! I’m proud of myself, because I’ve actually started working in a journal. No, nothing touchy feely (because, that’s just not me), just a place to put some of my experiments.

July 2020 bead mat update

You wouldn’t believe how much creativity; our new brass rings have generated! I received two, then had a lot of fun, trying to decide what to do with them. The first, includes water-soluble stabilizer, leftover threads (actually called ORTS), embroidery floss, Fireline, and seedbeads! The trick is to make sure that you hand embroider enough, with a stitch that locks (running stitch), and threads that intersect, in many places. You need to make sure that you have a sound structure, so there’s no danger of the piece falling apart, when you wash out the stabilizer.

Of course, I needed to resin the second piece! This one includes Ice Resin, Ice Resin pigments (sorry, we don’t carry them), small stones, Blue Faced Leicester  (I want to call them locks, but it doesn’t say that on the package, so they might be considered fleece) from The Olive Sparrow, then a few sprinkles of our Creative Arts Pigments in Deep Sea (High Temp, Lumiere Lustres). It’s was worked in stages, so took a couple of days! I think that it would make a pretty cool sun-catcher, but I haven’t tested to see if the pigments will fade in UV light. It would look pretty nice hanging in a window, but if not, a Shadow Box will do!

My muse was a little whiny, so I indulged her with a package of the small brass rings. But that’s only because, I have at least three more ideas that I would like to try. So, keep tuned!

I made this pendant, in a Susan Lenart Kazmer mold, with some of the leftover resin, and more of the Creative Arts Pigments (still Deep sea). Unfortunately, I discovered that we’re out of the bezel, that it fits into. So, it will need to wait until we receive a new shipment!

July 2020 bead mat update

My July 2020 bead mat update has been a creative one, but I’m sure that you’ve been working on projects as well. Anything that you would like to share?

Keep safe, social distance, wear a mask, and wash your hands!

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