Thursday, August 30, 2012

Adventures in Bead Applique

Hi Everyone! 

In the last post I gave you a little flashback into the beginning of my love affair with beads when I first stumbled upon a bead store located around the corner from where I worked and became mesmerized by those shiny little things. Yes! I went hook, line and sinker into the world of beads, carried away by the colors, design and the unlimited possibilities in jewelry making. Little did I know when I walked into the bead store to find some embellishments how my first love of quilting would turn to a fascination in making beaded jewelry.  Soon I was engaged in taking workshops and learning and traveling to bead shows across the country. In fact, the first bead show I went to in Austin, TX was the beginning of another love affair~Travel. Well, that is another story so let's continue on into the adventure of bead applique! 

As promised, here are the original beaded applique pieces that Amanda and I made in our first workshop.  

Original Bead Applique Designed by Amanda

Amanda's piece reminds me of the ocean with the tides and then it could be a jellyfish too! In beaded applique work the center cabochon must be anchored into place with beads that create a bezel, and only then after the cab is secured can you begin the bead applique. The bead applique is painstakingly done by hand sewing three beads at a time onto a felted background. As you can imagine, it takes a great deal of time to sew a design like this. To create a wave and sun (or moon) design, Amanda chose bugle beads in aqua and lavender. She used real Swarovski crystals in her fringe and to finish off the piece, picot beading was done around the edges. I think she did a terrific job on her very first piece!  And she didn't quit there! She went on to make this intricate Sunflower design! 
Original Sunflower Beaded Applique by Amanda

I on the other hand, made one (and only one) original bead applique piece! Bead applique I love, but it is not my cup of tea when it comes to beading....takes to long.  
Original Beaded Applique design by Suzy

The cabochon spoke to my heart and I went with the flow, creating what I call the Oyster.  You can tell that I also enjoyed the lesson on fringe making and got a bit carried way, but you know, the fringe is what makes this piece work. I still love it after all these years!  

Writing this post is making me think about playing with my beads! Do you have a hobby or craft that makes you excited? Please share your obsession with me! 

Have a blessed day!


Gina said...

Wow, these are such beautiful pieces! Really stunning. I can only imagine the time that went into making them.

Suzy said...

Thank you Gina, I'm so happy you stopped by! Bead work like this takes a lot of time, that is why this was my ONE and ONLY beaded applique piece!

Taylor @ Mama Java said...

Wow, those look awesome! Very intricate. I don't think I'd have the patience for it :)

Anne Payne said...

I like the "ocean" theme of the works :) They're all very pretty! You know my obsession...scrapbooking ;)