Monday, 14 May 2012

Sparkle on a Wet Day

A short extra post today! I was feeling a little off, and didn't want to bead in case my headache got worse, so this evening I decided to look over my stash in preparation for the bead retreat. As the sky darkened and the hail beat down on my kitchen skylight, I pulled all my Swarovski stones and other elements from the various hiding places around my desk. Laid out on a bead mat they lifted my spirits and proved very popular with the members of Operation Tackle That Bead Stash Facebook group...

I think this shows I have some considerable Tackling to do! And I am no nearer deciding what to take to Derbyshire.

Sunday, 13 May 2012


This has been a slightly odd week! I continued my obsession with Sabine Lippert's Beaded Fantasies by making a lantern earring. Why one earring? Well it was going to be a pair, but I couldn't decide on a colour scheme, so I made a different one, thinking I could just make a third in the preferred colours.... and then I found a stash of 4mm firepolished beads and just kept going! Result was a 'rainbow' of beads which I have temporarily strung as a bracelet, but could yet become a necklace:

Then on Thursday I received a delivery of chatons from Rachel at RB beads. Chatons are harder to come by than Rivolis in the UK, and Rachel responded to my queries by getting some in for her shop. The moral is 'If you can't find a particular bead, ask your friendly bead store to consider stocking them' I am now all set to try 'Amazon Jewel', here is the central rivoli (Heliotrope) bezeled in my favourite Light Bronze, and I'm still deciding on the chaton colours for the surrounding 'petals':

My Mother has also been visiting this week, and the whole family went to the Theatre Royal in Norwich to see Shakespeare's 'The Winter's Tale'. Mum is a great fan of Shakespeare and volunteers regularly at the Globe Theatre in London. She is also a follower (groupie?) of the Propeller Company, who are touring with this production, and knows some of the actors. All parts are played by the 14 men as are the music and the scene shifting. There is also audience participation! If you get the chance do go and see them! The next night we were there again to see them in Henry V which was a great contrast in mood to the other play, with lots of battle effects. My 13 year old son enjoyed this more needless to say, although he has actually enjoyed all the Shakespeare he has seen so far!

Saturday, 5 May 2012

May Flowers

The weather here in the East of England has been fairly grey and wet for the last week, not very good for the flowers but great for the greenery. The maple outside my window is now in full leaf so I'm screened from the street, but have less direct light so I'm glad of my Ott-light.

Last Sunday we braved the rain and headed to the Norwich Bead and Textiles Fair at a local High School. It was a good venue and the catering outlet supplied us with delicious cakes in between shopping for beads. I came home with a good haul, although I was trying to budget for our bead retreat later in the month

I really needed a thread zapper, since I started taking photos of my work I see many more thread ends in the photo. The dichroic pieces were made by a local artist and are destined for embroidery projects as is the blue goldstone cab. The little card is a useful 'Bead Oracle' from Spangles which lets you check sizes when you spot a bead/rivoli for example. As it is credit card size it's easy to carry in the wallet, everywhere you go. I keep giving mine away to other beaders so this time I bought some spares!

On Tuesday I received my copy of Bead Fantasies by Sabine Lippert. Amazon UK don't have it yet, but Book Depository had copies and I preordered from them By Thursday I had completed my first project (but not the last I'm sure) The Granada brooch:

I liked the way the surround is worked first then the central rivoli is inserted. This gave me the opportunity to try different stones. Initially I was going to use Fuchsia, but then I tried this 'Ultra Pink' one and it really glows.
While the projects are quite technically demanding, the instructions are quite clear. Unusually for me I used the written instructions more than the diagrams, perhaps because the diagrams combined several steps in one. I highly recomment this book to anyone who enjoys Right Angle Weave beaded bead forms. I know I'll be wearing out my copy! There is also an interesting piece by Sabine describing her creative process, and development of designs.

So although there aren't many garden flowers to look at, I hope you like this beaded flower substitute!