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Tuesday, February 8, 2011

January Bead Journal Project

My first Bead Journal Project for 2011 is finished! :D It's a little bit late, but then I was away for three weeks and it took me a week to catch up, and I still had to decide on my size and shape for this year and only then did I realize I needed to order beads too! Yikes!

Without further ado, here is the finished January Bead Journal Project piece:

January Bead Journal Project 2011 African Penguins

Penguins! African Penguins, to be exact. These were sketched from pictures taken at Boulder's Beach. I love penguins, and the African penguin is really cute. They make funny sounds, sometimes it sounds like they are really making music! The penguins are just as cute in the wild as they are at the zoo...even cuter! I really love penguins, so seeing them in the wild at Boulder's Beach was amazing. :D

Here it is with the inspiration/project sketch page:

January Bead Journal Project 2011 African Penguins with concept sketch

Project Notes:
Size 11 and 15 Delica seed beads in opaque black, white, blue grey, transparent matte teal green, ceylon beige, and lined light aqua
leftover quilter's cotton
size D Nymo thread with size 10 beading needles
backing: blue costume suede

January Bead Journal Project 2011 African Penguins supplies

I'm really pleased with the way this turned out, as I wasn't really sure how to finish the piece and couldn't find any resources that were very helpful. Eventually I just ended up slip stitching it to some blue costume suede stuff I had lying around, and then stuck a picot edge around it.

January Bead Journal Project 2011 African Penguins - back of the piece

One of the reasons I chose the oval format was because I figured it would be very versatile, and for the penguins I decided to go with a bracelet finish. And of course I didn't think to take a picture of the bracelet on my arm. I will have to do that and create a photo collage, which was my initial plan...and then I decided that was taking too long so I'd better just put something up!

I'm hoping I can get February's finished before too far into March - I actually had January's finished a full week ago, but it took me a week to take and edit pictures and get this post up - I know, I'm such a slacker - and while I did get February's sketches finished and prepared the fabric, I haven't actually started beading yet as I have desperately been trying to finish up items for a package (still not done - this package is consuming my life!). And now wouldn't you know I need to order the beads for March! Maybe I can get February finished before the beads get here. :)

I'd love to hear your feedback, this is my first bead embroidery piece and while I think it turned out pretty well for a first attempt I would love any suggestions you might have!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Christmas Poinsettia

So for Christmas this year I really wanted to make "package ties" to dress up the presents for all of my aunts and uncles. So I decided to make poinsettia tsumami kanzashi pins. These took FOREVER, but I am really please with how well they turned out. I made 10 - and I didn't make one for myself. I have extra fabric but I don't have any more crystals, and poinsettias aren't really my thing anyways.

Christmas Poinsettia Kanzashi

Each flower required six green petals, six large red petals, and six small red petals. I also used six flat-back swarovski crystals, 3 of 4.6-4.8mm light topaz and 3 of 3.8-4.0mm light topaz. The six small red petals were folded more complexly than the bottom petals; all 18 petals were cut in 2" squares from silkessence - the green fabric was textured but the red fabric was smooth.

All ten Christmas Poinsettia Kanzashi