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Sunday, November 28, 2010

Book Report... 'The Art of Beaded Beads' Starving Artist Blog

I haven't done a book report since I was in High School.... and I won't tell you how long ago that was, but if my graduating class every had any reunions; I've missed 10, 20, 25, 30 and 35..... Actually, that's not entirely true I seem to remember rewriting a few book reports 6 years ago for my son....

THE BOOK 'The Art of Beaded Beads' Exploring Design Color & Technique
edited by Jean Campbell
Publisher LARK

I got this book last summer to help focus my new found passion for seed beads... And since I'm a bead maker, what could be better than a different way to make components or BEADS!

I run a gallery all summer and on nice days between customers I sit outside, so this summer I tried to turn a lap-full of tiny beads into a single larger bead. (slightly more successfully than spinning straw into gold...) .

The first bead I attempted was the tropical Bouquet Bead... First you make the leaves then you add flowers, the design calls for 3 flowers... I couldn't see the point of the 3rd flower as it would be on the bottom so mine has 2 flowers.

Then I moved onto the tetrahedron bead.... ("A shape with 4 triangular sides") I fell in love with these beads and made little triangles for a couple of weeks, they make great earrings.

Then I tried to make a Dodecahedron... There isn't actually a mistake in the instructions on this bead but the layout of the text instructions could have used a bit more thought... This bead took me 4 days and I will never make another one... It's lovely but....

I also tried the Sea Anemone Bead... I can't get this one to work properly even though it's suppose to be easy.... The shaping on this bead is done by changing bead size ... (Bead size trivia: Seed bead size is the number of beads that can be strung on an inch of thread, So if you have beads and don't know what size they are just string them and measure an inch! The Japanese ones will be exact, the rest you may have to sort out the wonky beads....) Yes this project called for Japanese Seed Beads, I only have Japanese beads in size 15, my 8's and 11's are just 'cheap' seed beads... which could explain why this bead is not working....

DO I like this book yes, although I'm not sure what criteria was used to organize it, as shape & style & difficulty of bead projects seems to be totally random. The book starts off with instructions on how to do all the basic 'weaves'...however, I found the instructions for individual beads to be more than adequate... knowing exactly what stitch I was doing seems overated! I can see myself attempting lots more of these beads this winter, the book features instructions for 40 beads. That leaves me 36 more to try!

I think one of the nicest things about making stand alone beads is being able to use them in an original project once they are finished... the great coloured images throughout this book are all of 'beads'. There are few examples of finished jewellery so if you do turn the finished projects into jewellery you have something that is uniquely yours!

Other member book reviews!
Galadryl Design


galadryl said...

I admire everyone working with such tiny beads. I admit I wouldn't have the patient. Your beaded beads look fab.

Pricilla said...

I don't think I would see OR feel the little buggers.
The colors are stunning and I agree with you on the triangular beads.

storybeader said...

good thing to do while sitting outdoors. Knowing me, they're be all over the sidewalk! {:-D

Bonnie said...

I have a lot of respect for you seed beaders. What you create with those tiny beads is amazing. Thanks for an honest assessment of this book.

Islandgirl said...

Actually I'm sitting on a deck... so when I drop them they end up 8 feet below me in the dirt.... I dumped an entire tube of black beads last summer... lost about 70%!

BeadSire said...

Interesting book, especially for those who wish to emabark on the world of seed beads - I love how you provided examples of what you have made from this book, great review.