January 28, 2008

Mom and Me

My beloved mother and I had the chance to spend some "quality time" together :) We sat together and each one of us was doing the things she likes to do.

She was attaching rings to gold-plated fringe components, using only one chain-nose pliers and tongs to open them. I was surprised by this strange method, so I asked her why doesn't she use two pliers, like I usually do, and tried to convince her to try it my way by warning her about ruining the shape of the rings.

Working Together/ Mom's Special Method

She insisted working in her way, and then she said we would make a little competition: each one of us will use her own method and we would check who was able to open more rings. Well, I lost in this competition.. :) She managed to do it much quicker! Defeated, I returned to my beading tray and continued my needle work with bugles... :) I didn't try to argue with her anymore..

The fringe she was making was to be attached to a new special ornamented hat, which is the main decorative item in a Yemenite bride costume. This special costume is worn during a traditional Yemenite "Henna" wedding party.
My mother taught a lot of women how to make these costumes, using beads and silver and gold components, that were handmade mainly by my late grandfather, who was a Yemenite silversmith.

Traditional Yemenite Bride Costume

I really admire my mother for keeping this tradition alive and especially for the intricate artistic work she is doing.
My Mom's Embroidery Work

While I was writing this post, I recalled that many months ago I beaded a set of jewels for a Yemenite lady, who specifically asked Yemenite-style jewels to wear on her son's wedding. So, here is what I managed to design for her:

A Peyote Changeable Necklace and Brick Earrings

I beaded a peyote spiral with a big diamond-shape pendant, which can be folded into half to make a triangle shape, and added few peyote beaded beads, that can be removed or change their order.
I also beaded earrings in brick-stitch and a peyote bracelet with loops on the edges to complete this set.

Peyote Bracelet with Loops

The lady was very satisfied and happy with it, so I was satisfied too.. :)

January 24, 2008

How I Miss Wire Working..

Recently, seed bead weaving took over my mind and muse.

Usually I don't like to start a new work unless I finish the one I'm working on. However, since last Sunday and until now, I have started five (!) different works with seed beads. Ideas keeps coming up in my head, one chasing the other, creating big urge to implement them all.

I tried to switch to wire working, which I really like and haven't been doing for quite a long time. I miss making wire-crocheted bracelets, like the one in silver and blue beads, and I also had fun just playing with wire in my hands, until an idea came up, like the one with bugles and gold coloured wire.

Silver Wire Crocheted Bracelet

Wire and Bugles Bracelet (primary design)

That last one is actually a primary design that I made for the September 2007 monthly challenge project which is carried out in my beading commune. I remember that I then promised myself to work on this bracelet and its finish more professionally, but since then I didn't even remember where I put it in my drawers.. And now, I cannot even START a new work with wire...
That is for the seed beads to blame!..(What is it with those tiny beads?!)

I cannot focus and force myself to actually finish at least one work.
Although I feel happy being creative, at the same time it's starting to be confusing and frustrating, because I don't feel REALLY satisfied unless I have a finished work in my hands, and I also feel now like I have wasted precious time for nothing...

Any advise, anyone?

January 06, 2008

Another Saraguro-Hojas Bracelet

This time I made it (with some modifications) with 6mm Swarovski bicones.




Saraguro Hojas Bracelet with Swarovski

January 05, 2008

My New Saraguro-Hojas Bracelet

This bracelet was done by the Saraguro Hojas technique.

I used 8 mm matte bugle beads, 11/0 seed beads and round Carnelian beads in the middle. I also used little ornamented button for the closing.
I had to use double Fireline thread for this work because the bugles, not like in most cases, cut it easily.
The bracelet is a little inflexible because of the long bugles, but that dose not make it uncomfortable to wear.



Hojas Bracelet With Carnelians

January 03, 2008

One, Two, Three... Bingo?..

I had to unpicked this necklace two times and I almost gave up finishing it.
At first, I just weaved two pieces in Ladder stitch and connected them together in the front by tying the edges (like a men's tie) and reinforced it with hidden stitches. It looked strange and I didn't like it (I don't have a photo of this first design).
Instead, I thought I'd make one pattern, known as the Serpentine, that was shown recently in the European forums.
I connected one Swarovski chaton in its setting close to the edge of the necklace in front, and weaved a number of 15/0 seed beads above and below it (decreasing), to cover the space created between the two connection points.
I probably didn't keep the correct direction of the thread coming in and out the beads from both sided of the necklace, so the Serpentine pattern didn't come out well - it was asymmetric and twisted. I unpicked it the second time.

The First Attempt With The Serpentine Pattern

I finally decided to make it simple: I used the chaton and 15/0 as before, but kept the upper part free - I didn't connected the two sides of the necklace.

More to the design problems, I used C-Lon thread (matching the beads colour) and although I waxed it before using, it kept splitting every few beads threaded :(
That was quite a work on a quite simple necklace..Still, I am not sure I like it, but NO way I'll unpick it again..

 The Final Design


 Close-up On The Pattern

January 02, 2008