Monday, 18 July 2011

Spilt Beads and Bent Needles

I'm not too sure about these pesky embellishments, did I make the right decision?

Firstly, despite a number of friendly warnings about bead containers left un-lidded on side tables, I have managed to upset said containers at least 4 times so far. I am not sure if anyone has invented a machine for picking up tiny tiny beads from finely ridged mats (other than a hoover), but I have had to resort to licking my finger to create enough 'stick' to get each bead up. I reckon a couple more spillages and I might just hoover up the lot and be done with them. Also beading needles are so fine that if I sneeze they bend.

Secondly, I am just not quite sure about the result....take Vajras for instance (remember them from first post?) - well this is a Vajra:
and this is my beaded version:

Circle of Vajras
Now squint and look from a distance...

One nice thing is that in the sunlight it now sparkles.
Thirdly there is the embroidery issue. I'm just not that good at it yet. I would like to be really good. Each Mandala gate will have a beaded curtain effect (at least I think that is what they are). My first attempt is ok (again with a squint)...
The North Gate (I think)

Lovely beads
....but then there are the 4 corner bits which I was really excited about, because I got to use some beads I bought on a whim online last month (lovely lovely beads like little sweets). The beads are yummy but the hand embroidery doesn't stand close scrutiny. Maybe a C minus. I thought of redoing it, but have decided to embrace the process of creative learning. However I have now bought a book, so expect to see improvements forthwith.
Not so lovely embroidery

Great Great Grandma's book of samplers
I have some pictures of a book of samples completed by my great great grandmother (born 1856), who was a dressmaker in Manchester - her embroidery seems to have stood the test of time. Maybe in the year 2146 some great great grand niece will be looking at the Mandala family heirloom and wondering about her ham-fisted great great aunt...

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