Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Spiral Peyote Bracelet

At last, it's finished. The colors in the photo aren't quite accurate. In real life, the color beads are more purple with a matte yet still slightly shiny finish - almost like dichroic glass. I used size 6, 8 and 11 beads. Once I got going, it was easy (especially when I had my "mantra" going) but, what a finicky thing it was to close up the ends! I could not figure out if it was a complete spiral or not and where to match up the ends. But, I'm sure that comes with experience and lots more bracelets.

The Spiral Bracelet was from a class I took with Nancy Jones and Peanut (the store manager) of Tiny Dog Seed Beads. My beady pal and Houston Bead Society President, Shirley and I have been going every Thursday to learn something new from Nancy. It's a great way to spend a couple of hours with friends laughing, learning and beading.

On a whole different matter, cool, dry days are very rare in Houston and it's been absolutely gorgeous the last few days. I just had to post this picture of my jasmine in full bloom! The smell that wafts from it is absolutely heavenly and it is the first thing that greets me as I walk in the back gate.

Collage Mania II Submission

My original submission for Collage Mania II was lost coming back during a Show and Tell. Luckily for me, Virgina Spiegel was very understanding and allowed me to create another one. I tried recreating "Dreaming of the Sun," but I wasn't happy with it. So, I ended up with this: "La Virgen" (#2).I was much happier with this one! Many thanks to Virginia for being so patient.

If you want to look at all of the mixed media yumminess going on with Collage Mania II or even better - bid on a quilt - then go visit Collage Mania II. It benefits the American Cancer Society. As some of my friends already know, I lost my dad to complications of lung cancer in December of 2003, so I was delighted to be a part of this effort.

This weekend Houston Bead Society hosted the fabulously talented and way cool bead diva Sherry Serafini! You know how some artists' work just "speak" to you? Well Sherry is one of those artists. Her work is spectacular and the pictures just plain don't do it justice. We worked on a Freeform Pendant and Embroidered Cuff - which I will post as soon as I finish them. I learned a load of new ways to do one of my favorite techniques from a fun, fascinating lady. Did I tell you she created a beaded belt for Steven Tyler of Aerosmith? She rocks!!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

More beading

The good thing about being a member of a society/guild/Yahoo Group is not only the like minded people you meet (and end up hanging out with), but the programs many offer. This month Houston Bead Society had one of its members teach us the Right Angle Weave (RAW) technique by creating a bracelet.

RAW is one of the few techniques that I have been able to teach myself and this program strengthened my skills. Now - arg!! - I have to have more crystals. I used a vintage glass button and a peyote loop as a closure. These little bracelets also work up quite fast and the variations are endless.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

What do do when you're stuck in bed sick?
This bracelet is from a Crazy Peyote class I took from the Bead Goddess herself Nancy Jones of Tiny Dog Seed Beads. Nancy is one of the most talented bead designers and teachers I know - why she isn't nationally known is beyond me. If she can teach me some of the tougher beadweaving techniques, then she can teach anyone. So, if you live in the Houston area and want to learn a particular technique, don't walk, run to the phone and give her a call. Her fees are extremely reasonable too. Can you tell I'm a Nancy Jones groupie? The Crazy Peyote Bracelet is a perfect project for those of us who don't really like to follow directions or a pattern. You use the peyote stitch and beads to weave a bracelet or necklace, but instead of sticking to a pattern or the same size beads for the entire project, you meander along changing bead sizes, colors and types. The most difficult part is knowing when to stop!

These other two are brick stitch bangles (aka as Bead Be Bangled Bracelets). I know I've said I don't like to follow directions or patterns, but sometimes I'll take it on, just to prove to myself that I can do it - even if it usually involves a lot of cussing. If you subscribe to Beadwork magazine then you'll recognize them as Nancy's bracelets and instructions were featured in the October/November 2002 issue. It was an easy, cool way to learn brick stitch and create an awesome bangle at the same time. I made one using size 6 beads and the other using size 8s. I like the 6s a lot better. Nancy claims they are addicting to make - and they are my friends, they are! I have 2 more started waiting to be finished and I've fished out several more tubes of beads ready to be made into bracelets.

This week I'm trying a Spiral Peyote Bracelet. I'll post a photo of it as soon as I finish.

In the meantime, I have bangles waiting to be finished...