I was invited to a bead retreat a couple of weekends ago -- and yes, it is as delightful as it sounds. Spending a weekend with about 20 other women, all accomplished and talented beaders, is inspiring to say the least. It also gave me the chance to work on a couple of projects that I just hadn't gotten to.
The January, 2013 issue of BeadWork magazine had a design for a bangle bracelet made with peanut beads that intrigued me. (Yea, I know that's over one year ago. So I'm not Johnny-on-the-spot, OK?) I've also been meaning to try cubic right angle weave, because everyone around me seems to be loving this stitch and I hadn't yet tried it.
Let's start with the peanut bead bangle. Essentially this is flat right angle weave that gets stitched into a tube. Since I don't like to wear bracelets, I stitched the tube but skipped the part that turns it into a bangle. I do things like that a lot.
I let the peanut tube sit around while I started work on a cubic right angle weave rope. As the rope progressed, I had a sudden light bulb moment: String the tube on the rope, and the bangle becomes a necklace!
I finished the ends of the peanuts tube with a little peyote stitch ruffle, made a toggle and loop for the rope, and inspiration meets function.
When have you taken a pattern and, with just a little change, created a new design? I'd love to hear about (and see pictures) of your creative experiments (or sometimes accidents).
Kim Humphrey not only enjoys creating fun and whimsical designs with beads, she also uses traditional patterns and techniques for all types of bead jewelry.