Monday, January 28, 2008

Why we love what we love

It’s easy to see why people love the creations of the EBW team, but why do team members love their art? We asked our members and received something wonderful, thoughtful, revealing answers.

Kim, aka Regalbeads:

Everything about it? It is very relaxing for me. I love the feel of the beads, watching something come together right before my eyes and the satisfaction of a finished piece! I think that my favorite part though is seeing a piece of my work being worn by someone who loves it!

Trish, aka skyesmedicine:

What do I enjoy most ...

1. The oohs and ahhs from people who say OMG how can you do that, I would go nuts. Nice to be able to do something well that others can't - esp. since I don't sing, dance, paint, play music, etc...
2. I find it relaxing - most people say that is nuts.
3. The sheer joy of saying I made that when a piece is complete. Especially knowing that my technique is on point, tight and true. I have had many folks at the pow wows and festivals comment on how well I do, not bad for a chick who 2 years ago couldn't do a simple loom piece without stabbing every warp thread.

Anna, aka arosebyname:

It's my therapy. I could spend hours and hours just beading. In fact, I would spend all my time playing with beads if I didn't have to earn real money to pay bills. I wish so much that I could earn enough playing with my beads that I didn't have to do anything else, but so far, it's just not happening that way and it's so frustrating!

Ann, aka myfairladyvt4:

What I love about beadweaving in general is that it is repeats, kind of like knitting or crocheting, I can watch TV or whatever while I am doing it, if there are too many changes in the pattern I don't seem to like it as much. It is kind of relaxing for me like therapy. Unless you get a big knot. I also love how there are so many different shapes and sizes of sizes of the seed beads. I can't seem to get enough.

Dawn, aka dawnchastain:

The process of knowing that I can make something work and look good. I love to make things out of junk or include it in my bead work. I am bad about starting a piece to see if I can do it and then not finishing it because it’s not a challenge any longer.

Bev, aka noeasybeads:

My favorite part about beadweaving is designing. Seeing a group of beads together and envisioning what they can become.

Jean, aka totallytwisted:

I just love having a block of time to go into my beading room and just work. To shut out the daily annoyances like the phone, chores, obligations, etc. and play with my beads. I love looking at the
beads, buying them, touching them even reading beading books - it is all part of the beadweaving experience. But I must admit the part I love the best is finishing a piece and thinking this is the best I have made so far - it is awesome and then knowing it is just the beginning and I will make even better pieces down the road because each item you make is a learning experience.

Sarah, aka thebeadedlily:

The same thing that inspires all my beading, the beads themselves. I love the colors, shapes, finishes. I love to form the finished product. I love seeing how one set of beads makes another set gleam. I love that people wonder what the inspiration is when I'm just having a blast with beads. I love that the finished product is beautiful, that it's art.

Melody, aka salamanderhouse:

I love the Zen of it, the total concentration to the exclusion of all else. I love the spilling out of puddles of color, and the fortuitous accidents that always make a piece better than the plan. I love the snapping in of beads in peyote stitch, and the draping of beads in net stitch. I love the contemplation of the stash for the next project. I love the feel of beads under my fingers, and the look of them in different lights.

MaryLou, aka time2cre8:

The thing I love most about beadweaving is the thing that probably drives a lot of people away from it -- repetition. It's so relaxing to sit there with all those tiny beads in front of me, picking them up one by one and adding them to something that winds up resembling "bead fabric." It's applying order to the chaos of a pile of beads, making them sit up tight next to each other. Someday, obsession will take over and I'll wind up creating a tablecloth or something. I wonder how beadwoven wallpaper would look. Hmmm.

Wolf, aka DantesSpirit:

The variety. The various stitches that can be adapted to whatever you want, in so many ways that no two people will do it the same way.

Ivey, aka enso:

I've always loved the results of small units grouped into massive numbers - paintings by Sol LeWitt and Agnes Martin and Robert Morris are examples of this kind of inquiry - they took the imagery off of the visual grid and made the grid the subject. I've wanted to bring that kind of sensibility to a more portable, personal format by making jewelry - off-loom stitches are often used with a grid to make pictorial patterns - I'm interested in the underlying structure versus the picture possibility.

Judy, aka beadbug:

I love the versatility of beadweaving from the objects I can create to the variety of stitches and the ease of altering or inventing my own.

Esther, aka GreenEnvyDesigns:

I love that the medium is so versatile. It’s an everlasting supply for original new materials and sizes and shapes. No matter what you could think of it can be made from beads. I enjoy exploring new possibilities and go so big no-one else has ever done it (such as my beaded bra tops) I like how it is a very relaxing art. It makes me feel peaceful at heart. If shared with a nice cup of tea of course ;-)

Morwyn, aka AnotherCountry:

What I love most is that I become so deeply involved in the process that Self just fades away and Creation (conceptualizing, sketching, and crafting) becomes All.

Claire, aka ClaireCreations:

I don't know what I love about beadweaving. It's time consuming and often very frustrating, but I love to see a whole piece emerge from those teeny little beads. I also find it soothing and relaxing -- at least, I do when things go smoothly and I'm not trying to thread a needle or fight thread that somehow got itself all twisted into a knot where no knot should be.

Susan, aka ClinkscalesArts:

I have to say I love the complexity and intricacy of beadweaving. The fact that you can take tiny pieces of glass along with a needle and thread and weave them into beautiful jewelry astounds me. I am very much a beginning beadweaver, I've completed less than 10 pieces (but I've started many more!), but I find myself drawn to the complex designs. Because I am drawn to these, it takes me a long time to finish pieces. Sometimes, I don't even start a piece because I know how long it will take and I don't want to commit to it. I admire the designs of beadweavers like Cynthia Rutledge and Laura McCabe.

Another aspect of beadweaving I love is the color. I love to put this bead against that one and look at how the light plays on the two. Do they go together? Do I need a different shade? The color draws me in. Thought I love color, I'm not a fan of bright colors. I prefer deep jewel tones and muted earthy colors. I respect an artist that can use bright, bold colors, but I am not one of those.

Sooz, aka boodlersbeads:

What's not to love? It's something not everyone can (or will) do and you get these amazing fluid pieces that you can wear, sell and/or admire. Sometimes the constant repetition is soothing when I'm stressed and I know I just have to pick up a bead and stitch to make something pretty.

Kathy, aka KathysKraftyKreations:

I love beading because I can take a little bag of beads, all separate and apart, and join them together with a needle and thread into something beautiful that can be proudly worn or displayed.

Lauri, aka lauridesigns:

Seeing something come into being. Besides it is a soothing exercise for me.

Patricia, aka SilverDragon:

I love the intricacy and detail that comes together in beadweaving to make such a wide variety of beautiful and expressive art. There are so many weaves (stitches) and variations of these and it's all endless. One need not ever make more than one of a kind and still never reach the end of creativity! It's a fusion of painting and sculpture with light and tiny bits of amazing glass though it expresses itself so differently than paints and pencils and ink. What's not to love (ok, well, losing tiny beads in the carpet I guess)?


  1. This is such a great display of work and I love to read why people love to bead.

  2. This entry is awesome - love everyone's comments and especially their work - great job!!!

  3. We definitely have a talented and dedicated group of artists here!

  4. what a beautiful blog-a collage of words and pictures!

  5. What A great read! It was just as beautiful to read as to see the beautiful variety of beading. Thanks again for a wonderful job of representing us so well.

  6. Love all the answers and the pieces you chose to accompany them! How did I know you would choose "Linked the the Sea"! :)

  7. As always - fantastic job with the blog. I love the thoughtfulness of the answers given. Everyone loves our art for a different reason, but the one thing I kept hearing was the repetiveness, the therapy, the "zen" Wow!!!!

  8. Carol Dean - you did a wonderful job putting this together. Thank you so much!

  9. I thoroughly enjoyed reading the entries - and I never read. The work is stunning. And the end result is always exactly what I am hoping for - I am inspired. Thank you!


  10. Amazing post!! beautiful beadwork and great to read!

  11. Thanks to all of you who participated. This was a great read!

  12. A wonderful experience - many thanks to the BlogMistresses for pulling our diversity into a cohesive, interesting and inspirational piece.