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Beading Requires Beads

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Just a quick note to show you a picture of some beads that I recently made for a great looking necklace. I thought you might be interested in seeing what they look like when embellished with a rubber stamp and metallic paint. Of course, I did the stamping before cutting the beads. In this case, I used a polyester fabric that is a little diffcult to work with, but has great colors.

It’s really hard staying indoors right now as the weather is finally warm and the honeysuckle is in bloom. Come this weekend it will be hard to choose between going on an adventure and cleaning up the yard. This has been a very strange winter without good time to do winter clean-up, and now it looks as if it is going directly from cold to hot. When I say hot, I mean 100 degrees after highs of 55 degrees.

Our snowbirds have already begun to leave town in droves, although where they are headed the weather is still awful. That’s why they head to Mesquite in the winter. It is tolerable here compared to where they come from. Even Mesquite is too cold for my liking, but how can I complain when it didn’t dip below freezing all winter. The fish in our pond barely had time to lower their metabolism before getting hungry and begging again.

But it did give me some good time to express my creative nature, so staying inside isn’t so bad after all.

Here’s the picture of beads that I promised. Let me know what you think of them and the technique. Next week I think I’ll give you directions on how to cut and roll the beads. Then you can begin to create on your own. Remember that very few people do this, so you can express yourself in a unique way and when I do shows, attendees love the things I make. I never worry about giving away trade secrets because whatever you do will be totally unique to you.

I used text and lilly of the valley stamps.

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Texture is the Trick

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The appearance of texture is what makes fabric really zing! Do people still use that word? Anyway you can do some really awesome stuff with a little bit of imagintion. You can simply paint design with acrylics, tea juice or fabric dye, but remember that you will be cutting it into little rectangles or triangles. I prefer to do something a little less well defined, like tie-dying for example.

How about scrunching–sort of a tie-dye technique. You’ll need metallic acrylic paints, fabric, rubber gloves, foam brush, spray bottle filled with water, newspapers or newsprint, and iron and ironing board.

Here’s where the creativity comes in. You can use a piece of fabric that is already colored for this one. Then use the basic method I talked about in the previous post to coat it. While the silk is still wet, wad it up into a ball starting from the middle f the silk. Then carefully unfold the fabric and rewad ittwo or three times. Each time you wad it you add more texture. After the last “wadding” leave it wadded up to dry. As always, iron the back side, once it is dry, to set the paint.

Or you could salt the fabric. You’ll need the same basic ingredients as above with salt added to the list.  This time, you’ll want to put the fabric on a sheet of plastic. You need to have water sit in puddles for this to work. After painting, while the fabric is still wet, sprinkle salt on the surface. Then spray just a little bit of water on the fabric. Don’t drench it or you’ll ruin it. Let it dry completely, brush off the dried fabric and iron the back side of the gabric.

Now you’ve got two cool techniques for making texture on fabric.

With that done, I’d like to talk about inspiration–the best part of creativity. Our art is inspired by this beautiful desert we live in. We are surrounded by mountains and hills that have hidden treasures. These treasures are in the form of really wonderful red rock that is painted with petroglyphs. Some of these were done 10,000 years ago and I always get a sense of wonder when I pick up a piece of chert. I realize that it was handled by the ancient ones as they created arrow and spear heads.

Then I see the figures on the wall created by these ancient humans and wonder what their lives were like. No one really knows what the figures mean because there is no rosetta stone to break the code. We can only guess.

Where we often picnic.

I’m going to insert a photo that either my husband or I took, but here is a great link:http://indra.com/~dheyser/ . If you search rock art or petroglyphs, you can find tons of info.

I love the color here and they tend to be what I use in my jewelry, although I do use other colors that I think people might like.