Archive for the 'Beads and Beading' Category



2009 beading projects : a glimpse

Hi !

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Still in the spirit of “filling in the blank”, here is what has been happening on the beading front since the beginning of 2009.

Bracelets and a necklace, this is what they are supposed to become, but none of them are finished yet… As always, I never can finish a project before beginning the next one !

I am now convinced that I am a big fan of the herringbone stitch : depending on the beads size and/or the combination of beads sizes and shapes, the possibilities seem endless. It is such a versatile and pleasant stitch !

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20090225-perles

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I decided to take up netting with the pink necklace in the picture below. Netting was how I got into beading in the first place. A gazillion years ago (just a slight exaggeration !).

I remember having been completely mesmerized by the lace-like quality of those netted seed-beads necklaces ! This looked so much more complex and interesting and fun than simply stringing one bead after another, like I was doing at the time (and already loving !).

Enough rambling !

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Have a nice day !

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Indian colors Herringbone bracelet

Another unfinished project down !

I started this simple bracelet a while ago, in need of color and texture.

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It is a simple herringbone band, decreased with brick stitch on each side.

I used different shades of Miyuki triangle beads, fuschia pink-orange-soft pink-crystal gold, all of them inside color (meaning that the color is dyed inside the hole of the bead, the body of the bead itself being a transparent color). I wanted the mix of color to be a bit Indian-like and playful, yet not too much so that the texture of the weaving still shows.

And here it is !

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I’ve been wondering for a while how to finish it (finishing always seems to be a source of hesitation !), and finally kept it simple with just a crystal rondelle (love the cute chunkiness of those !) on one side and a loop on the other.

Unlike Toho triangle beads, which are more…well, triangle-like, Miyuki triangle beads have soft angles, which results in a soft overall texture in the weaving. I really like that it didn’t turned out too geometric.

Aaaa, cute triangle beads, how I love thee !

I have to say I’m a bit curious to see how the finish of these beads hold on. For an estimate on the duration of seed beads finish, you can go and check here.

I uploaded other pictures (different angles, and closer shots) on my Flickr account, here, feel free to go and have a look !

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Beaded bracelet : “Ande” herringbone

A few weeks ago, I decided to tackle the pile of unfinished projects awaiting in (and flowing out from…hum) the “Unfinished Objects” box.

Good idea, right ? Completing a few projects, feeling good, starting afresh with new ones.

I did open the box, sneaked a peek in it… tentatively rummaged through the tangled threads… and finally took out this bracelet. Well, at the time, the beginning of a bracelet, really.

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The model comes from Ande, a talented Hungarian beader, kind enough to share her tutorial here.

When I first found it, months ago, I really liked the very geometric and regular feel of this design. The rows of herringbone stitch and the crystals offer a nice playground to experiment with color.

So here I went with a very dark purple, a transparent forest green with purple accents, and some 4mm Austrian bicone crystals in different shades of pink (vintage rose, light rose, rose water opal).

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Now that it is finished, I can say I really like the color combination !

I’m not completely satisfied with the finishing though and I can’t quite put my finger on it, but for this time, it’ll be all right this way.

It was a very pleasant bracelet to bead and I’ll definitely do it again. I’d like to try it in a wider version (maybe 5 or 6 rows of crystals), and maybe try a monotone colorway for a change (like all bronze-like colors, or black in different finishes). I can’t wait !….oh, but wait…unfinished projects first…!

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(I’m sorry I couldn’t take better pictures, it’s very dark and cloudy here today…)

Beaded Bracelet for the Boy !

Making beaded accessories for men can be a tricky endeavor.

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I often thought about how to make something that a male friends would be happy to wear, but never got around actually making anything. The idea was quite appealing though.

A few months ago, the Boyfriend asked that I make something beaded for him. A bracelet namely. Something confortable and easy to wear. With nice colors. And a bit fun.

Ok.

I was a bit surprised, I have to say, and decided to wait just a little while to be sure he really wanted a “beaded something”. But the request rose again. Seriously. Wow.

After five years together, the Boyfriend knows more about Czech fire polish beads, the different kinds of seed beads and the wonder that are delica beads (japanese cylinder beads) than any male I know…well actually more than any girl I know too ! Having to cope with my various ramblings on anything beady, I thought the poor one would be maxed out on the topic and that it would dampen his will to ever own something beaded. Turns out, no-no, he really wanted a nice bracelet.

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Facing such an unfaltring request (!), I had to deliver !

The first idea was a simple peyote band in a mix of matte and polished seed beads. I was about to actually begin weaving the band when the Boyfriend crossed path with this spiral herringbone necklace and this one.  And he liked the texture of the rope very much. And the fact that “it is fun”. I believe that was his very first beady epiphany !

So on it was for a spiral herringbone rope ! I chose the colors according to his taste and his wardrobe, trying to make it as wearable as possible for a guy. I decided to only use seed beads for their slightly chunky feel and the slight irregularity in size. I wanted the result to be a bit rough looking and not too regular. Using delica beads would have led to far too neat and regular a rope. To avoid an overly beady feel and keep it as simple as possible, I used a metal clasp, just big enough.

Here is the finished bracelet.

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I was just a little bit nervous to see what the Boyfriend would think about it, but it only lasted a second : he really loved it and has been wearing it since !

Sigh, this is a great feeling !

Spiral herringbone necklace : completed !

So, this definitely took me much more time than I thought it would, but here it is, finished at last !

It sure felt good to check it off the Work In Progress/UnFinished Objects list (which is…well…kinda long).

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From the beginning of the adventure to the point of carefully packing it and sending it to its (hopefully) happy recipient, a lot has been going on : an unexpected moving, the getting used of this new life, the arrival of a new friend and so on. Life just kept happening I guess ! Fortunately, I was given a lot of time to  complete this project so in the end, it all went well. I’m thankful for that.

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So, this necklace is weaved in a spiral herringbone stitch, with a toggle and toggle bar weaved in peyote stitch. The rope itself is made of a four row herringbone stitch, with a fifth row (the golden Delica beads one) inserted in between. I was asked for bright colors, and knowing the recipient I chose a combination of lime greens and fuchsia pinks in a variety of finishes (matte, transparent, color-lined). I think the use of different finishes in the same shades give a more interesting overall look, and add depth to the texture. Because I wanted just a bit of sparkle, but not too much so that it would be difficult to wear on a daily basis, I added one row of golden Delica beads.  Those are a very soft gold color that fitted this purpose perfectly I thought.

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I began weaving my rope with three rows of ladder stitch (for non-beady folks : a few rows of the ladder stitch often serve as a base to begin weaving in the herringbone stitch). No matter how hard I try, because of the twisting involved at the beginning to actually force the rope to spiral and get the beads in their right position, the thread is always showing a little bit on these first few rows. How annoying. I solved the problem by unweaving the ladder stitch rows once the rope was done and replacing them with herringbone ones.

It’s probably not the most efficient way to do this, but I have no idea how to begin a spiral herringbone rope without the ladder stitch part=without the thread showing when the rope begins to spiral. Does it make any sense ?!

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I’m very happy with the result ! The colors mix very nicely, the necklace itself is really confortable to wear and can be with the toggle in the back or in front when in need of a focal point. I’ll be truly satisfied though when I hear if the lady who’s waiting for it liked it…Don’t leave me in suspense, pleaaaaase, pretty please !

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