Working on something new

This weekend, I started on a seed bead project using a different technique. This bead loom was my mom’s, as are a good portion of the seed beads in my collection. I think of her as a quilter these days, but she was quite a beader back in the day! While it’s been quite a while since she last did any beading (it may even predate my existence), it does make me feel close to her to use her tools and materials. She may be more of a quilter than a beader, but you’ve seen my sewing skills… So I’m glad that we share this!

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This first project didn’t take very long, just a few hours over the course of a weekend day. I adapted a knitting pattern, like I did for my lazy stitch patch of a couple weeks ago, and came up with a pretty little geometric design. Once I use up a bit more of the length of these warp strings (I’m not sure how much room I’m really supposed to leave on the ends, but…in an effort not to be wasteful, I’ll take chances and see what happens), I’ll sew the weaving onto leather and turn this first project into a headband. I haven’t decided yet whether to somehow incorporate a stretchy band or give it long tails to tie on.

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Once I finished the weaving on the headband piece, I wanted a quick little project to do on a weekday evening. I chose another knitting chart (sensing a theme?) and whipped out this little baby, after some serious issues with too-small beads and/or loo-large needles. I set out with the idea of making this with some iridescent burgundy beads as the background and cream colored beads making up the circular pattern… But no dice. Blue beads were there for me, as blue things usually are, and I felt compelled to go for the bubblegum pink contrast. I don’t love it, the way I love red and turquoise, but it’s cute and pretty and it’ll be a barrette.

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4 thoughts on “Working on something new

  1. I ceased loom bead work in high school when the combo of small beads and needle resulted in me tugging the jammed needle. when it suddenly broke free the needle plunged clear across under my thumbnail.

    Be smart. Use pliers and thimbles when using any force.

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    1. I haven’t had quite a disastrous incident, but I’ve certainly broken enough beads trying to force needles through… I mostly work with the understanding that if I can’t get it through with a gentle use of pliers, I’m not using those beads. I’m also planning to try loomwork with wire needles (much thinner!), though I’m not sure they’re stiff enough.

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  2. Long warp is good. Screw waste. You’ll never curse waste the way you’ll curse unraveling ends. If you leave warps long, you can use em to sew the whole thing onto leather.

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