Our project for the day is Twisting, Twirling Trillium Lariat. The beaded beads that terminate the lariat are a great stand alone bead and I use them as such in other projects like this one:
But today the project is to work off the initial round of the trillium beaded bead to begin the lariat; first with herringbone, then transition into a winding stiff tubular peyote using two different sizes and numbers of beads in each round, and then back to herringbone or an embellished polygon rope that twirls.
In this spacious banquet venue we look like an impromptu sweat shop: beaders bent over the beads, task lamps aglow, stitching away. On Sunday, this same space positively vibrated with the collective energy generated by this group of jazzed and artistic felters.
It just never gets tired for me. I love that both beadwork and feltmaking are about building wearable compositions by combining tiny fibers or beads in both a painterly and a sculptural way. And I love the ways that they couldn't be more different. It is thrilling to turn beadworkers onto feltmaking. How lucky am I. And always, regardless of where I teach, I am always with my peeps, always at home in so many ways.
Many of these beaders are familiar to you because I share them with you every 6 months, when I return to Bead Gallery. Surely you recall Claudia, here seen captivated by the corkscrew beadwork she generated. With the completion of each "bump", she was propelled into wanting to make just one more, one more, one more. Claudia took all 5 workshops this weekend. AND she baked scones for us on Friday, sable shorbread cookies on Saturday and lemon bars on Sunday. AND she wined and dined Genevieve and I Saturday night. Yum. Gyoza: she prefectly pleated little dumplings stuffed with veggies and shrimp. Beef, Shiitake and Bok Choy in a delicate sauce. For dessert, sexy little cupcakes with exotic names and ingredients that included caramel, stout, chocolate, lemon, berries, chai, pecans or were they pralines?... Melrose enjoys much ado about cupcakes. I think Craig said there are 3 shops that specialize in cupcakes alone! Apparently they are THE item for weddings and any meal or event meant to be special.
Genevieve sat in with us the entire day but chose to make a necklace solely of the swirling polygon. To capture just the right amount of swirl, we had to finesse the bead choices for embellishing. She was intent on completing its full length so she would need only to add the findings afterwards. She succeeded.
Which reminds me, Claudia has sweet names for beady things we can all relate to. For example, her box of UFOs, unfinished objects, and who among us doesn't have a boatload?, she calls her "box of shame". And she's been attending Genevieve's Wednesday evening classes at Bead Gallery when she can, wanting to finish items from her box rather than learning a new technique or starting a new project. So, about this she said she longed for a "Festival of Finishing". Genevieve told her right on the spot that she is appropriating that name for a new twice-a-year event she will hold in that gorgeous Corinthian Hall. At this formative stage, here's what she's thinking: an entire Saturday or Sunday will be devoted to finishing as many pieces as possible; folks will bring a delish pot luck to share and their unfinished projects. For her part, Genevieve will remind each beader of the stitch or lesson to complete it and everyone will benefit by the abundance of information and of course togetherness with all these fabulous dames.
I just might have to mention this to Sylvia and Cathy (Sisters Originals) and Pat and maybe dedicate one day of one of our Bead Blast weekends into a "Fiesta of Finishing" (borrowing from Claudia and Genevieve)...where all the beaders will bring unfinished items, perhaps kits or classes they have purchased from and one of us, and we will mentor the beader through finishing it! Sounds teriffic. Goosebumps. Just a thought. Will keep you posted.