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Friday, September 30, 2016

Just Crazy and a Lot of Excuses

Today is the day for a Blog Hop for which I am singularly unprepared. But knowing how annoying it is to come to the website  of a participant in the Blogshop who has not bothered to post anything at all, I feel I must offer both a Apology to the other Participants and something of san explanation for my dereliction of duty.
I am moving. Not only am I moving, my cat is moving with me and we are moving to Tucson Arizona, a town which is a leaders dream destination, filled with lots of crafty older women such as I come to escape the winters and to hopefully be in a more creative state of mind. I have been singularly lacking in creativity lately.
Instead my mind is filled with packing lists, lists of things I will need, considerations of the best way to move my cat. Will he fit under a seat in front of me? Probably but Tucson is not a one stop flight from Boston, which makes it harder to plan.
I have done a crazy thing and bought a house(condo, really) that I have never seen. Have I made the most expensive mistake of my life. I will find out. Anyway, if anyone is in Tucson Arizona this year , give me a call and we can get together and bead.But message me for my phone #, I don't want to put it up for public use



Wednesday, May 18, 2016

BEADWORK THROWDOWN!

Well, its done. I conceived and executed a fine piece of jewelry, inspired by the generous helping of beads and the gorgeous large lace agate cabochon that Catherine King, my Swap Angel(and doesn't it sound like the title of a song;Swap Angel, I love you so much) I chose to take inspiration from Maggie Meister's book "Classical Elegance" and attempted another bead embroidery because Catherine King is so accomplished in it and I wanted this piece to have a lot of her influence and I wanted to try again a technique that had always foiled me in the past. I think I this time I did a creditable job, finally my needle started to find the right places to go and I really enjoyed doing the bead and pearl edging on it. I did make a mistake, I cut my first piece of suede backing the wrong way. Luckily I had some more. As for the retable, whose design I took from "classical Elegance;
the Lakshmi Pendant, while I used the basic design, I also used the techniques I have learned from Kate McKinnon's Contemporary Geometric Beadwork. Her new techniques are capable of changing the way beadwork is done, making complex pieces that might be beyond the skill of a beader or that might take a much longer time, very accessible.  More people should look into her techniques, the new peyote starts, the exploding round and the elegant guide round being three of the most useful. So new beadwork techniques meet old style beadwork to make what I think is one classy piece
However I wasn't able to post on swap day since I was at a beach hotel with a sick grandchild.  Now, today I am going to put this up and put the link on Bead Peeps and hopefully some hoppers will find me anyway.

my beadwork in a topsy-turvey way


Thursday, May 12, 2016

The almost swap and hop post

its almost time to swap and hop and I'd like to post a bit about what I've done and haven't done with the beads Catherine King, my swap angel, sent. I did actually come up with two ideas and drew them out. Having the ability to draw out what you want to make is helpful in many ways. You are then able to visualise your ideas more clearly. That I've actually made one of these designs is a big accomplishment in itself, and the other, unmade, is still pregnant with possibility
ideas for swap work

Saturday, March 19, 2016

In which similar beads are sent to different people

When I originally signed up for Bead Peeps Swap and Hop I was quite pleased to be matched with Blanchy Medina. From both New York City and Peru, she promised to be a superb swap partner( she works at Micheal's) However, due to health problems she had to bow out.
Catherine as her cat Callie
 Thats when my Angel, Catherine King stepped up.  Linda introduced us and left us to get at it. While we have completely different styles of beading, I find much to admire in her; the confidence she has, her ability to tackle any  bead weaving project; her color choices, so accomplished yet so very different from my own; the way she fits her animals and children into her busy life; having a job; participating in the Society for Creative Anachronism, and her interest in historic costuming, plus actually finishing her ambitious projects.And, dear to my own heart as well, the love of fantasy. 
  Each time I join a swap and blog hop, I hope for a challenge beyond the ordinary, and the chance to learn something new. and so far, that hasn't really happened. Perhaps I'm expecting too much from a little package of beads. Yet this time I think I will learn and be challenged. I have already learned about Operation Tackle That Bead Stash,  and did that Facebook group  instantly call my name . And  my wonderful Bead Swap box is fulfilling this, coming with Stiff Stuff and rivolis, as well as gold seed beads, a wicked good piece of jasper and ivory jasper beads to match, as well as a book of romantic designs by Lisa Kan, non of which I've ever tried. So far I feel extremely challenged. Perhaps too challenged! Will I be able to do this? Return for the reveal: May 15, 2016
The Morrigan, Catherine's Battle of the Beadsmith entry, in progress 
What I sent Catherine, crystals and jasper and seed beads

What Catherine sent me, my little package of beads,crystal and jasper and seed beads

Saturday, February 13, 2016

DISCOVERIES!

the elegant guide hinge drawing

I have just been brave and posted a picture of the drawing I made of the new kind of beadwork connection, a joining of two pieces of peyote fabric that I am calling the Elegant Guide Hinge because it is based on the thread path of the Elegant Guide Round from the Contemporary Geometric Beading Universe. This Hinge can bend 360 degrees and also combines two separate pieces of peyote fabric into a whole, where if you made both pieces the same color, you wouldn't be able to discern the hinge, but it would still be there!





Another discovery I've made in the Contemporary Geometric Beading universe is that you can use MRAW(modified right angle weave) to make the increases previously made with herringbone, as in the work of Diane FitzGerald and Kate McKinnon. You can use this new increase stitch in triangles and warped squares and I am now making samples with horns and wings, to see if it can be used there. So far, it works. This discovering is very exciting, although it requires a lot of thinking, and sample making. When I have more samples I will post again
a triangle with a MRAW increase

Friday, January 15, 2016

ARISIA

Today I will speak of anticipation and a non-beady subject, ARISIA, a four day long science fiction convention, with whimsy! As generational SF fans we are going to introduce the youngest member of the Lightsey clan, Owyn, age six, to the joys of fandom and the thrill of staying three nights in a big hotel, eating out, staying up late and Hopefully, meeting other young people who also play Minecraft obsessively. There are five  Dances and a Masquerade, not to mention Hall Costumes, and my significant other wonders;
Minecraft 

Yoshi Eggs
"why I am only taking one, repeat, ONE bag?".  How often do we get a chance to dress up nowadays?  Check back for pictures of me and Owyn in costume and maybe I'll even post some wonderful pictures of the amazing costumes I see. In the meantime I leave you with pictures of some of those things dear to Owyn's heart:

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

heart trees and totem poles



painting by emily carr
sketch by emily carr


heart trees
Being that its a while since I last wrote anything for this blog and I can't begin to write about everything I've done, I'll start with this. Heart Trees and totem poles are the same! Heart trees are the heavily spirited weir wood trees in  the Game of Thrones. Totem poles are the heavily spirit-inhabited carved trees from our own world. My first memory of the image that would haunt me, until I discovered that the artist, Jack Gaughan,  had taken some of his ideas from Emily Carr. When I first saw her pictures I was amazed. Her work is so full of archetypes that it goes straight into the deep corners of your brain. Yet, when you can compare her pictures to photographs of the same scene you realize that while she had this amazing eye for color and composition, her paintings were often intensely realistic at the same time.
At this time of the year my thoughts turn to totem poles and I stuff my brain with images, spend some time sketching and coloring them and, yes, try to bead them. Right now, I'm using purple and light blue, trying to get the effect I see in those painted animal heads. It is so hard. Realizing heart trees with their strange bloody faces, both symbols and old gods in their own right were simply another expression of totem poles has been a real mind-opener for me. I feel rejuvenated and ready to bead another