…A Guide For The Aspiring Bead Artist
by Warren S. Feld

Excerpts From This Ever-Evolving Tale.....

I don’t mean to drag a poor Elephant by its tail, kicking and screaming, into our bead world against its wishes. Nor do I perceive the elephant to be a threat, like you might see an Elephant in the boudoir, or the fine china store. And I don’t want you to shut your eyes and pretend not to notice that this Elephant is here, standing shoulder to shoulder with every beader and jewelry maker around.

The Elephant is not a joke. And the fact that it is “Rogue” makes it more important than ever to figure out why it’s here, among size #10 English beading needles, and Czech size 11/0 seed beads, and Austrian crystal beads. It seems so worldly, yet other-worldly, our Elephant. It’s not our muse. It’s not our Cassandra. It has no secret plan or strategy. It does not depend on its size to make its point. It does not hesitate to stomp and chomp and clomp because the beads before it are raku or glass or gemstone or crystal or metal or plastic. But a Rogue Elephant in the middle of our craft room forces upon us a completely different logic, so that we can make sense of it all.|



Your Unused Bead Stash

You usually have to buy more beads than you will use for any particular project. It’s infrequent that you can buy one bead at a time. So you have lots of little bits of little things left over.

Having a little of a lot of different beads might be disconcerting to some. However, this stash of beads should be seen and treated as treasure. It should open up new possibilities for you as you think through new projects and designs.

Your stash can be used in fringes or as embellishment. You can use it to finish off the edges in your pieces. You can use these as spacer beads in bead stringing projects.

You can organize bead swaps with your friends, and trade off part of your stash for that of another’s.

Kathleen was so determined to create a project for using up her bead stash, that she even developed a mathematical formula to assist her. Since she was somewhat math-phobic, this was an accomplishment in and of itself. In her stash, she had lots and lots and lots of colors of 11/0 seed beads. But not enough of any one color to make a project with them. She thought and thought and thought what to do.

The result: Monet’s Garden Bracelet. She created a square-stitched base with 8/0 seed beads, about ¾” wide and 6 ½” long. Off every other bead in each row, she created a fringe about ½” high with 11/0 seed beads. At the top of each fringe-strand she beaded a small flower, again with 11/0 seed beads. Her mathematical formula determined the pattern in the colors of the flowers, which sat atop each fringe. This pattern was designed to optimize the blending of the colors along the length of the bracelet.



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