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Friday, October 17, 2014

Coming Down to What Makes Me Happy

We all start somewhere, then start again and again in the crafts we like to make.
I started with stringing beads.  We were gearing up to drive to Alaska.  I knew I needed something to pass the time. I knew I would look out the window most hours, but I needed something else just in case I had sensory overload (HA!  Never when I am out where there are few-to-zero people!).  So I bought seed beads and thread and decided to learn to string.  I bought a harmonica too and a "How to Play Harmonica" book.  I started the trip from Boulder and didn't even make it to Cheyenne before I was told to put it away or lose it out the window.  So beads it was!  Though most of the beads I bought ended up on the floor of the Suburban.  Ever bead on the Alcan Highway?  Doesn't work so well.

Dad and I laying on the Alcan Highway...because we could! 



After Alaska, the beading stuck.  I got a loom and failed.  I got bolo tie stuff and got crippled by lack of weaving skills.  So I kept on stringing.  I got married and had kids and kept on stringing.  Then one day, I signed up for a wire working class.  I sucked at it.  I mean, really sucked.  I was bummed because I really wanted to make it my thing.  The very next hour was a weaving class.  I decided to give it a try.  Brick and Ladder, baby!  Ladder stitched bugle beads with seed beads brick stitched on either side of them.  I did that for weeks, changing sizes, colors, types.  So I signed up for herringbone then peyote.  I took a lot of classes in a short period of time.  Then back to wire because the weaving really boosted my confidence.  I sucked.  I practiced at home.  I sucked.  Then I did a bit with sheet metal.  Very Bad.  Then polymer.  Bad.  But I ran out and got all the needed supplies and practiced for a month.  Bad bad bad.

There was a big lull in weaving recently.  While taking some time off from it, I hit the antique stores and the shore and got old jewelry to give new life to and rocks and shells and glass and driftwood to make into jewelry.  Something about blending weaving with an old brooch and weaving and pearls with a rock excites me.  I love to weave, I love to string.  I love to make affordable pieces.  I found my thing pretty early on and with each disastrous class and practice thereafter, my love for beading and stringing was confirmed.  I still have a lot to learn.  I need more RAW practice, though I doubt it will ever be my go-to stitch.  I may dabble a bit in bead embroidery.  Cynthia gave me a start with that.  Not loving it, but ya never know.  Maybe I will try the loom again since I have more of an understanding of weaving now. Exploring more about weaving and stringing...good goal for the future.  I will enjoy someone else's wire work, metal work, and polymer!

***If you would like to join us for A Time To Stitch Six, please do!  Sign ups end today (but we are flexible :-)  After all, it's just beads!)

8 comments:

Maryanne said...

It was fun to find out how you got started in beads. I think sometimes you are better just having one thing to concentrate on rather than having lots of different things going on. But, sometimes you just have to do what strikes your fancy! Your beading is great, so keep at it!

AntiquityTravelers said...

I love your style, your sense of color and your weaving. Never stop being you my friend ....

Liz E said...

Beads have multiple ways to recruit converts. Bouncing around in a Suburban on the Alcan highway wasn't one I would have thought of. Keep doing what feels good ~.^

Therese's Treasures said...

I am so happy that you are a bead weaver or I would not have the best partner in the "A Time To Stitch" challenges or "She Made She Made". I love the photo of you and your Dad lying in the middle of the Alcan Highway, awesome!
Therese

windrock studio said...

You know I'm one of your biggest fans and hope you keep doing what you do so beautifully ... but maybe it's time to give that harmonica another try.
Great post, really enjoyed it and the road warrior image!

Miss Val's Creations said...

This story made me smile Christine! I've had the same feelings about crocheting. I want to do it successful in the worst way but every time I try, I totally suck at it! You are a great bead weaver and I bet you can pick up the loom again with amazing results. Cool photo with your dad. :)

Shirley Moore said...

Oh, I love hearing your story! Sorry I missed out on the Time to Stitch. :(
Do give the loom another try, I became interested in it last year after seeing a piece from Erin Simonetti. It had life, it had dimension, it was fab!

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