Friday, January 24, 2014

Freeform Friday - guilty pleasures

Polar vortex. Polar plunge. Snowmageddon. Whatever. It's a snow storm. Its a snow day. When I was teaching full time, I looked forward to a snow day as much as any student. If a teacher tells you they don't enjoy a snow day... well, they may need coffee, or wine. Because really? An unlooked for day of freedom, at home, warm and cozy? Bonus.
With the latest forecast for the Mid-Atlantic this week, I made sure to stock up on the essentials. (Altho I did make an Arctic expedition to the convenience store for cream.) I am a freelance teacher now, but the ingrained response to a snow day still takes hold of me. I don't do work, even though I usually work from home. There are tiles to sculpt, blogs to write... Nope. If its snowing - I can play... 

Bead embroidery feels like play. Not because its easy - quite the opposite. But its not my normal, chosen medium. Its something I am experimenting with, and I feel no pressure to produce work for a show. I like trying out pieces I have created in polymer, earthenware or stoneware clay - and seeing how they blossom enmeshed in wee tiny seed beads. The pieces are small, so I don't feel an acute loss if it has to be scrapped/torn apart/unstitched. The seed beads seem plentiful in my stash, and can be reclaimed from a piece gone wrong... So I drink coffee, watch Netflix, listen to dogs dream... and I bead the snow day away. 

Here are a few of my trial pieces from this winter... and we have had a few snow days here in Delaware! I would appreciate feedback as I continue to experiment with a very new (to me) medium! 

1. polymer cab. The Magician/Tarot image, peyote bezel
2. Steampunk angel - polymer wings, antique doll, gears
3. Triple butterfly - stoneware cab, "glaze tear" assorted beads
4. The newest one - earthenware goddess pendant. I was playing with gems here, lapis, moonstone, pearls. I strive for balanced asymmetry, yet ended up a little crooked. 
5. Triskele goddess - started it all! Great tutorial from NoEasyBeads on Etsy. 
6. Stoneware goddess cab, green garnet, peridot... 

What is your (bead/art/jewelry) guilty pleasure? 

I look forward to hearing from you... now I have to get back to work! 



  1. I just love the look of little tiny beads framing a focal. Just thinking about it makes my head hurt and kudos to anybody who can manage it. I think I need to make some more cabs for people to bead with!! Thanks!

  2. I make all these cabs and then I want to tab set them! Or bead a bezel! The cab is so much more versatile than I used to think...

  3. I love playing with seeds and amazing cabs like yours. My guilty pleasure.........keeping that one a secret! LOLOL

  4. Working with tiny seed beads is not my idea of a day off - that would truly put me over the edge. But it is awesome that you can do it! Your cabs look great framed this way. I especially like the one in the last picture.

  5. My favorite is Steampunk Angel. I appreciate bead embroidery...the beauty, the skill, the time. But I wouldn't really wear much of it. I would wear the angel though. As for guilty snow day pleasure? Honestly, it's sitting in front of the tv, curled under a blanket for most of the day, sometimes knitting. I so rarely watch tv that it's a huge luxury that I always feel a tinge of guilt for doing :-)

  6. Your bead embroidery is beautiful Jenny. I like the earthenware goddess best.

    1. Thanks Becky! I am so trying to find the right balance without perfect symmetry...

  7. How lovely! I have a great appreciation for anyone who has the patience to work with tiny seed beads! I don't think I have the patience or the eyesight to attempt it (I did a tiny bit quite a number of years ago).

  8. These look really beautiful I especially love 2, 5 and 6


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