Tape measure detail
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Some more Materials Packs

As well as the new spiky packs I’ve managed to create some new colour-ways for my Baroque Tape Measure, and resurrect some previous ones.

The new ones are:

Medium Vitrail

Medium Vitrail

Bruised

Bruised

Ruby & Gold

Ruby & Gold

Caribbean Sunshine

Caribbean Sunshine

And the resurrections are:

Tequila Sunrise

Tequila Sunrise

Ruby & Old Gold

Ruby & Old Gold

Scarlet, Silver & Gunmetal

Scarlet, Silver & Gunmetal

As usual they are available in my Folksy shop (click on the pictures) or my Etsy shop (here for the new colours, here for my completely favourite Tequila Sunrise, or here for the Scarlet or Ruby).  And finally, the tutorial itself is available for instant download via Etsy here (VAT will be added if you are in the EU), via PayHip here (no VAT), or if you don’t mind waiting for me to e-mail via Folksy here (no VAT).

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Materials Packs for Great Balls of Spikes

I’ve been meaning to put together some Materials Packs for my Great Balls of Spikes Tutorial for ages, and on Saturday I had the time (well I had the energy to stay up late to make the time).  So here they are – I hadn’t realised quite how many Spikes & Gumdrops I’ve managed to collect whilst ‘meaning to do this’, so there is a nice variety of colours and finishes to suit all tastes.  I’ve really dug around in my stash to find some interesting finishes for the seeds and fire-polished beads, and am parting with some really nice ones which I’ve been hoarding.  My favourite is the Magic Orchid Spike colourway, because the spikes are gorgeous and really sing with the Zest, Fuchsia and Magic Orchid seeds and Magenta Metallic fire-polisheds, and quite frankly if someone doesn’t buy it soon it may mysteriously disappear.

Anyway, here they all are – if you click on each photo it should take you through to the correct listing in my Folksy shop.  If you’d rather use Etsy, then the brights (Magic Orchid, Cornflower, Frosted Crystal) are here, the darks (Matte Black, Jet Copper, Blue Iris) here, and the Gumdrops (Magic Blueberry, Jet Slipperit) here.

Magic Orchid Spikes

Magic Orchid Spikes

Magic Blueberry Gumdrops

Magic Blueberry Gumdrops

Cornflower Spikes

Cornflower Spikes

Dark Blue Iris Spikes

Dark Blue Iris Spikes

Jet Slipperit Gumdrops

Jet Slipperit Gumdrops

Matte Black & Crimson Spikes

Matte Black & Crimson Spikes

Jet & Copper Spikes

Jet & Copper Spikes

Matte Crystal, Scarlet & Silver Spikes

Matte Crystal, Scarlet & Silver Spikes

And finally, the tutorial itself is available for instant download via Etsy here (VAT will be added if you are in the EU), via PayHip here (no VAT), or if you don’t mind waiting for me to e-mail via Folksy here (no VAT).

Semele's Cuff - The Indecisive Beader - Sarah Cryer Beadwork.
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Semele’s Cuff is a winner!

Some of you will know that I’ve been working hard this year on a piece for the annual Stitch N Craft Challenge.  Stitch N Craft are probably the leading bead shop in the UK for bead weavers, and every year they run a different challenge.  Sometimes it’s for multiple related pieces, sometimes one, sometimes there are provided components to work in (usually Swarovski) and sometimes none.  This year it was a single piece, and just a tiny Swarovski butterfly to work in.  We had to make a piece inspired by a British butterfly and its habitat, with an accompanying sketchbook explaining the piece and what we’d learnt about the butterfly.  I’m really thrilled to say that my piece ‘Semele’s Cuff’ won the professional category, which is a great honour and delight.

When I have more time, I’ll write more about the butterfly I chose, and give you more details about the piece,  but for now, here are some images and a very quick description:

Semele's Cuff - The Indecisive Beader - Sarah Cryer Beadwork

‘Semele’s Cuff’ is inspired by the sand dunes of our annual extended family holiday location, Old Hunstanton in North Norfolk.  I’m typing from there now, and we were here last year when Stitch N Craft announced the 2016 theme.

 

 

The dunes here are full of maram grass, sea holly, and other interesting coastal plants, and were attracting lots of butterflies.

I was inspired straight away by the gorgeous silvery grey spiked Sea Holly, and after some design detours created the cuff base, which is a zigged peyote round with herringbone increases creating spikes, using some of the techniques explored by beaders like Jean Power and Kate McKinnon and the Contemporary Geometric Beadwork crew.

Semele's Cuff - TThe Indecisive Beader - Sarah Cryer Beadwork

The sea holly is topped by a band of Grayling butterflies, with their beautiful mottled outer wings, balancing on the MRAW points and hovering above six beaded beads representing the Sea Holly flowers.

Semele's Cuff - The Indecisive Beader - Sarah Cryer Beadwork.

There are three sets of beaded beads, each pair worked in reversed colours in shades of silver and mauve – a pair of fringed beads using a variant on my usual design, and two brand new designs, one using cut and knotted threads over a peyote base to create a ‘hairy beaded bead’ and the other a 3/5 ball using spiky buttons which I am especially pleased with.

Semele's Cuff - The Indecisive Beader - Sarah Cryer Beadwork.

The cuff is named ‘Semele’s Cuff’ as the Latin name of the Grayling concerned is ‘Hipparchia Semele’.  Semele, (according to Ovid, the mother of Bacchus by Jupiter) is the subject of one of my favourite Handel Operas, and I love the idea of her wearing this cuff while she sings ‘Endless Pleasure, Endless Love’!

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2016 Secret Beadalong – Beads

Regular readers will know that I was going for a more neutral colour scheme this year.  Clearly the gratuitous use of Neon Violet and other magenta beads means that I’ve failed, but it’s still a quieter and more wearable scheme than last year’s!  Plus it goes with the Penstemon in my ‘hot’ colour schemed flower bed.

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Here’s the list of beads I used:

Miyuki 8 seeds – 1051 Dyed Galvanised Silver; 2002 Matte Metallic Silver Grey

Miyuki 11 seeds – 1051 Dyed Galvanised Silver; 2002 Matte Metallic Silver Grey; Black Picasso (after factory coating)

Miyuki 15 seeds – 181 Dyed Galvanised Silver; 2247 Fuchsia Lined Crystal Lustre; 1310 Dyed Transparent Fuchsia

Bricks – Pastel Bordeaux; Black Picasso

Mini-duos – Black Picasso; Neon Violet; Antique Silver

4mm Fire-Polished rounds – Transparent Magenta Lustre; Matte Metallic Gunmetal Matte; Neon Violet

3mm Crystals – Preciosa Crystal Vitrail; Swarovski Crystal Light Chrome

The eagle eyed among you will spot that I didn’t use the various sliperit beads, both etched and not, which I showed you in my post about my pre-prep bead selection.  I did start off with them but the scheme wasn’t hanging together – so I swapped in some silver and I think it works better.  In the end, I think the sliperit works better with warm metallics, which I didn’t have in the shaped beads required, so I’m going to plan something in the future with copper as a base.  I’ve got some lovely after factory Coated Crystal Vintage Copper Miyuki 11s – a slightly matted, muted finish and they will look lovely together with maybe a hint of fuchsia (of course).  Who knows, I might even use them to make another set of this design.

 

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2016 Secret Beadalong – Days 6 & 7

I’m afraid I have a confession to make – I’m not going to be beading days 6 & 7.  I don’t have the quantity required in my choice of mini duo (the Black Picasso), so I would need to order more, but instead I’ve decided to make a braid from some lovely mid grey sari ribbon from YarnYarnYarns, which I blogged about a while back.

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I haven’t attached a clasp yet – I’ll probably wrap and neaten off the ends, then add a large popper which can be hidden in the run of beads, to give a lovely tidy finish.  I know it’s naughty, and not sticking to Jean’s design, but to be honest I really love the (almost) finished piece.  Plus I’ve sent her a picture and she likes it anyway!

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In the end the beauty of this set of beaded beads is that they can be worn on any necklace or bracelet – singly, in small groups, altogether or whatever you fancy.  So I might make another braid for a bracelet, or maybe a CRAW rope round a wire bangle base?  Or just hang the neutral coloured beads from a silver chain (I made sure made some in just grey and silver) – even I can’t wear magenta every day. And maybe when I’m less busy and more organised I’ll make Jean’s rope………….

 

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2016 Secret Beadalong – Day 4

Another new bead type today – bricks.  A couple of blocked holes slowed me down –  always remember when using twin holed beads to check for blocked holes when you first add them – there is nothing more annoying than doing all that work and then finding you can’t connect the second hole.

Beaded Bead 10

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Beaded Bead 11

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Beaded Bead 12

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At a guess, with 3 more prep pieces left, tomorrow is the last day for beaded beads.

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