Full steam ahead…

DragonWristWrap_InProgress_DarkGreyBackgoundWhy this renewed burst of beading energy?  I’m first to admit that my interest in beading had waned.  Contented to hammer away in my metals studio and work with polymer clay and resin, I hadn’t picked up needle and thread in months.  It had been well over a year since I had designed and written one of my step-by-step beading tutorials.  You may ponder why someone once so prolific a beader ceased to produce any beadwork at all and is now suddenly beading like one possessed.  I can sum up the answer in two words: Geometric Beadwork!  I had ordered Kate McKinnon’s book, “Contemporary Geometric Beadwork”, what seems like eons ago (it did have a lengthy gestation, but will be released any day now).  Thankfully, Kate offered pre-release pages from the book to those who had pre-ordered and supported the project.  Those pages opened up a new “bead world” for me.  I should add that the book is nothing like the many ubiquitous tomes that contain a slew of “how to make” projects. Rather it is bursting with great ideas for beaded designs that serve as a springboard for one’s own creativity. I dived in and began to produce pieces of substance and dimension – forms that seem to take on a life and energy of their own!  And what surprises me most is that I’m creating intricate pattern-work within these forms, finely detailed designs that beg for scrutiny.  Having employed a myriad of textural bead types in previously bead woven pieces, I’m now enjoying the simplicity and smoothness of cylinder beads, which support the bodies of three-dimensional forms and allow the pattern-work within to be a star attraction.  Inspired by the  Sea Serpent in Kate’s book, I’m presently working on a fanciful winged Dragon bracelet that will wrap thrice around the wrist. I can truly say that I’m loving every moment of this beading adventure!  

~ by BarbaraBriggsDesigns on January 26, 2013.

6 Responses to “Full steam ahead…”

  1. I am so glad you are taking on the Serpent form and I love love the dragonish colourway. And I agree that it’s so excellent to work with pattern, form, and sleekness after so long thinking about texture, and making metal. It’s like windows opening in my head, and I want to put them all together. Vol II is going to have metalwork mixed in with beads, so please feel free to explore armatures and clasps and frames…

    we will be so excited to see what you make!


  2. Me too…I can hardly fall asleep at night because my mind is racing with ideas for new pieces!


  3. I really like your style of beading very interesting.


  4. What a lovely review of the book – you’ve captured our intentions exactly! As I mastered each new technique I found it required total concentration, so it’s not surprising that you had to step back from beading while you found your voice in metal and polymer clay. Now that you’ve mastered the techniques that attracted you, it’s time to incorporate the new skills with your beads – can’t wait to see what you do with THAT! *G*


    • Thank you! I’ve really enjoyed the preview pages and it won’t be long now before I hold the book in my hands. I’m so enjoying this type of beading…it really makes your mind work. I love the challenge of coming up with additional designs and the pattern work. Here I am on vacation and I can’t put my needle and thread down…geometric beading is like a puzzle that begs to be finished!


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