Saturday, February 27, 2010

More than just a project

For me, beadwork represents how I interact with the world, and can be a true reflection of what I am supposed to pay attention to at that time, learn from, and move on...alot can be gleaned from how we choose, bead, react to and interact with our beads and patterns.
Case in point;Rachel Nelson-Smith's Retro Ruffles Cuff, which graced the front of the Beadwork Vol 13, #2 Feb-March 2010 issue.
I knew I loved it when I first saw the cover.
I knew it was going to be a PITA, even tho I love brick stitch, and probably should just enjoy the photo, instead of beading the bracelet.
I knew at BeadGroup I should ignore that this was next week's project, bring my own project to do, and have fun with the group.
Did I listen to any of the above?
This is the learning part, and a part that is essential to growing into ourselves; do we listen to that small, still voice that both encourages and warns, depending on the situation?
Call it your Muse, your conscience, your Higher Self, your Inner Master- call it what you will, but ignore it at peril of time, energy, and the ability to move forward, past blocks that hinder your growth.
The colors, bead sizes and styles, even the clasp 'button' were not issues. Everything seemed to fall right into place. The first row went well, and as I noticed her photo showed tubular, straight-sided 6o beads for that center portion, I avoided the mistake of using the more donut-shaped 6o Czech beads. Mine sat nicely next to each other, at least until I got to the loop for the clasp.
Ever try to get tubular beads to turn into a nice loop, end to end?? So doesn't want to happen!
Still, with a bit of coaxing at the thread points, I managed to open the outside ends a bit, and got a sort of oval loop. At least my center row wasn't all wonky, like those who used the Czech 6o beads were experiencing.
Not bad, I thought....shoulda paid more attention to that little voice. It was saying "This is your first warning....this pattern is NOT for you!"
Marching on, I managed to add the 8o beads along both sides of the 6o center, not adding too many as I filled in the gaps, so that it laid fairly flat. On a bit of a nudge from the Muse (I never ignore the creative nudges), I then added 3- 15o copper charlottes over the top of and between each 6o, using the previously added row of 8o to anchor them. Now, that looked nice. The loop was coming more into shape, and my turquoise stone heart for the clasp fit through it OK, so added an 11o copper-lined bead into each 6o end that was going to show in the center of the clasp.
VOILA! No more thread showing there. Good ideas, eh?
Pressing onward, I added the two more rows of 8o, and noticed the bracelet was getting mighty stiff. I know myself, I know I bead tightly, and was trying my best to just let the beads sit closely, without pulling on the thread for dear life after each bead, but still this bracelet was stiffening up like crazy!
Another warning from the Muse....this ain't gonna work out the way you want it to, Dearie.
Do I pay attention?
Hell no.
I press onward, add first one row of 11o ( well, I can't tell if it isn't going to work out if I don't really try it with them, can I?), then another...
I sit and admire my work so far; the colors are nice, the finishes on the beads are really complementing each other, it IS a LITTLE stiff, but I can work with that- it will 'ride down with wear', as Mr. Humphries would say on Are You Being Served.
I get the bright idea to bring the sides together, poke the Heart clasp end through, and see how THAT looks.
Damn thing won't lay right, won't stay in the hole, and looks awful!
OK, maybe I need more beads between the Heart and the end.
Cut off Heart, add more beads, put together again, Heart won't stay in.
Mumble under breath.
Curse softly.
Dogs get nervous, cats decide to warm themselves elsewhere.
Big decision to make; do I keep going, find a different button for the end, give up, keep it to remind myself to listen to the warnings in the first place, cut it up?
Take a good look at it- should have changed out tubular 6o for the Czech donut 6o around the loop- this would have made the loop lie flat, I think.
Maybe not- the original in the photo seemed to curl up, as well.
It was going to be stiff and wonky.
I am not really a fan of either.
Keep or cut...hmm, not a choice for me. Too OCD.
Cut away- interesting how fast it all comes apart and actually almost separates itself into the correct colors and size beads in piles- now THERE is a sign for ya!
Making something else with same beads, the 2nd project in the RAW special B & B magazine- Wiggle Room. It is practically making itself.
Lesson accepted, and I hope, learned.
Listen to that small voice- it is your best self, trying to get your attention.
So, what would YOU do, faced with these choices....there are lessons in all of Life!
Happy Beading!
ps, no I didn't get a photo of it before cutting it up- that, alone, should have been a warning sign!


Whytefeather said...

Thank you so much for sharing this story... LOL! I felt like I was sitting there on your shoulder watching the whole thing. I can't say I've hit that part yet as still fairly new to beading... but I've been stubborn in other areas and plowed ahead when I should have listened instead.

Lidia said...

Enjoyed your story and the lesson - I know just what you mean about the cats finding a different place to sleep. I bought the magazine just for the bracelet on the cover a couple of weeks ago. I was so tickled to see something in brick stitch for a change. I made a couple of little samples and decided I'd rather bead something original. I didn't like how it felt and for me how beadwork feels is as much of the attraction as how it looks.

Gypsy said...

Thank you so much, Whytefeather and Lidia...sometimes I feel I am standing on my soapbox, boring the world!!

Ellen said...

Boring, Aryd'ell?? LOL, you don't really mean that. Boring? I think not!