Saturday, November 1, 2014

Beads, and starting over again

Hello, everyone.

As you will likely remember, I have some small beading projects lined up to try, along with my idea to make a big picture of the Bramontini Risen Christ. (I think this picture may be 300 or more beads tall, but who knows? I don't think the free pattern makers that cap the width at 100 beads do it justice, and with 100 beads width there are a lot of rows. Not quite 300, but a lot. And the only way I can make a 100 beads wide picture come out decent it to essentially make it a head and shoulders only cropped picture instead of aiming at the whole painting. I'm not convinced the narrative element comes across with only the head and shoulders.)

So I started out with some beads and the pattern of the Cross of Santiago. Goal: pendant for a necklace. Materials: red Preciosa #11 seed beads and bone colored Delica #11 beads.
Starting out on the first attempt on the Cross of Santiago, lower right on the pattern sheet.
The blue bead in the white-beads dish is a stop bead, which I use to keep the beads from escaping out the back end of the thread before they're corralled by the stitches. The squareish bump on the top of the cross is the bail so the cross can hang from a strand of beads or a chain. I will curl it around and sew it into the back of the work at the end, like I did with the scallop shell purse ornament.

I have now learned that you cannot mix the Preciosa seed beads with the Delica seed beads in a peyote stitch project. They aren't the same shape! The Preciosa beeds are, when strung onto the thread, tall and skinny things that don't take up a lot of space. The Delicas are, on the same thread, little rectangles that lock into place in peyote or similar stitch work. When I tried using the Preciosas in the middle of a blob of Delicas, the skinny Preciosas just didn't sit well between the Delicas on either side. After getting about 10 rows up the stem of the cross, I concluded the only way out is to dismantle it--using the line cutters--and redo from the ground up. Using a different set of beads.

Now the tentative plan is to make: 1 cross with all Delicas, the bone colored ones for the background, the cross mostly in a sparkly charcoal gray, and a few accents in dark rose and gold inside the body of the cross and as a couple of little rosettes in the middle of the ground to either side. Then, 1 cross using Preciosas, using black for the background and red for the cross. Maybe a third color as little accents to make the pendant less stark in color. Or maybe just as-is. (A cross pendant in Texas Tech colors?) And finally there is a plan to use Japanese seed beads in transparent red and silver to make a third cross, more sparkly in effect than either of the others I think. Almost Christmas-y!

But that's where this project stands, being redone and turned into three of them.

The Bramontini project, now, that requires me to find or figure out a better pattern that will be big enough, and also I have started putting Delicas on my wish list at Fire Mountain, in colors that the painting will require and I don't have.