Friday, December 27, 2013

December 2013 and Year End

Beading Patterns and Tutorials Making Changes
I have been working on making ornament covers using two of Deb Moffet-Hall’s Heirloom Ornament designs, Joyous Angels and Christmas Fairies. The ornament bands are worked using Peyote and Brick stitch with Delica beads. Each pattern includes a full list of the supplies needed, stitch instructions, bead graph, and finishing instructions to make the ornament as designed and shown on the pattern cover. Black is listed as the background color for both the Christmas Fairies and Joyous Angel ornaments, but I decided I wanted to use a dark blue color for the background. I used Copper lined Cobalt Blue DB183 for the background on the Joyous Angel ornament and Iris Blue DB02 for the background on the Christmas Fairies ornament. In making these color changes plus using different beads to finish the ornaments I started wondering if other beaders tend to use different beads and make changes to patterns and decided to post the question to beaders I know on Facebook.
Based on the responses I received beginning beaders will follow the pattern and use the colors and beads listed the first time they make a project, but will make color changes when remaking a piece. The more experience we have with beading the more we prefer to add our own little twist to a pattern and do not always reproduce the design as instructed. When working with a graphed or charted design the changes we most often make are to the colors; trading out for colors in our bead stash. In making other types of beaded projects anything goes when it comes to following a pattern; we become more adventurous changing bead sizes and bead types and in some instances alter the complete design.
I also asked designers if they expected others to make the item as designed. There are designers who create their tutorials with the expectation others will want to use different colors and in some cases different type of beads. Others feel their design needs to be created the way it was designed without changes.  When I create a design that does not involve a bead graph/chart or specific type of bead I fully expect the beader to make the project in the colors and beads they have on hand.
Changes on projects made using a Bead Graph or Chart should be limited to color changes. Selecting different size beads can lead to a poorly executed piece and cause unnecessary frustration. For example if I had chosen to use size 11 seed beads instead of the Delica beads listed in the Ornament tutorials the finished piece would have been larger and would not have fit the ornament ball, since size 11 seed beads are larger than Delica beads.  The reverse is also true using Delicas when a pattern list 11◦ seed beads will cause the finished piece to be smaller.
Choosing a different type of bead from the one recommended by the designer can alter the design completely. We should all keep in mind the designer chose a certain type and size of bead for a reason and making substitutions does not always work. This does not mean we should not try, but we should not feel disappointed if our substitutions fail and we have to start over.
Here are the photos of the two Heirloom ornaments I made using Deb Moffet-Hall’s designs. I also changed the dress color on one of the fairies in the Christmas Fairies ornaments. I wanted the dress colors to be my Grand-daughters favorite colors.

Loom Beading
In my last blog post I mentioned I was participating in a beading challenge for the Facebook group “The Bead Loom Room.” The challenge theme was creating a piece in Christmas Colors or Winter Wonderland and somewhere on the finished piece there needed to be a bell. The bell could be part of the design, embellishment or charm. Most of the challenge pieces were cuff style bracelets. This time of year I concentrate on making ornaments so I made ornament covers instead of cuffs and ended up making two projects for the challenge. The first piece is a "Poinsettia" Ornament cover. I used a wooden loom to make the Poinsettia band and woven ends to finish the band before removing it from the loom. The bells are part of the design but are very subtle. The second piece is titled "Elves and Bells." I wanted each elf to look different with different colors for the hair, eyes, and clothes. The Elves are holding the bells as if they are ringing the bells. I made this band on a Mirrix loom using the Mirrix No Warp Ends kit. I had good tension control with this loom and plan on making more loom pieces. Here are the photos of the two challenge pieces. 





The Seedbeadersters Facebook group is growing by leaps and bounds. The members are friendly sharing tips, ideas, patterns, and helping one another with beading issues. It is great to see all the activity in the group.
The current Bead-A-Long is a “Mystery Bracelet.” At the start of the Bead-A-Long the project was a mystery because the instructions were presented in two parts and a photo showing the completed bracelet was missing. The Bead-A-Long will be coming to a close soon but the Mystery Bracelet tutorial will still be available to Seedbeadersters’ Members.
Here are photos of the finished bracelet in different color combinations.

Seedbeadersters Facebook Group:
Seed Beads and More
The Seed Beads and More Facebook group is now a Sister Group to the Seedbeadersters. Many Seedbeadersters are also members of this group and we share information and activities. Anita Adamson is the moderator of this group and she was a Seedbeadersters member when she started this group. Anita plans a monthly challenge and the current challenge involves Sharing. The idea is to share a pattern you used to make a finished piece and to post a photo of the completed project. The pattern or tutorial could be a link to a free pattern or your own pattern you wish to make available to the members for free. This has been a fun challenge and it is great to see all the different bead designs. Below is a photo of the earring design I created for this challenge and shared with both the Seed Beads and More Group and with the Seedbeadersters Group. The tutorial is called “Jewel Tone Earrings.”

Seed Beads and More Facebook Group: