Thursday, April 11, 2013

Gumdrop Mandala

So, here's a quick clip of a piece that I CAN show you.

A couple of years ago, I fell in love with Wendy Ellsworth's fabulous book, Beading the Creative Spirit. I followed her instructions for creating simple beaded mandalas, and I found that stitching those little beauties is a wonderful beading meditation for me. I pick the patterns for the beads, pick the colors based on what kind of energy I want to bring to the piece...

Then last fall, I thought of an idea for a necklace (which is also still in progress, yikes) that was a series of simple bead embroidered components strung together with bits of spiral rope.

But then after I finished my Hoarder of Beauty necklace, and I started to think about other ways to use those sweet little gumdrop beads, I thought about making a series of beaded mandalas with gumdrop centers. Why not, right?

These little beauties were so much fun to make. Whenever I felt the need to take a break, I would work on one. The soothing repetition of each little mandala worked its magic on me and my anxious thoughts, and pretty soon, I had more than enough for the collar.

This is just a potential layout, with gumdrop spacers between each mandala. I made a copy of a collar template from Heidi Kummli's book, The Spirit of Bead Embroidery. After I enlarged it, I traced it onto a piece of clear plastic from a milk jug, and now I use it whenever I need to trace a template for a collar.

I love the idea of creating a large-scale, intricate piece of bead embroidery from a set of smaller pieces. It makes it seem less intimidating - instead of working on a huge piece, I can break it down into smaller sections.

So, now my next step will be to start attaching these mandalas, and then to figure out if I want to fringe the piece or not. I'm thinking about adding long swags under the bottom of each mandala, or possibly long, thin loops between each mandala.

The colors I chose were for healing and hope and peace. And speaking of which, it's almost time for yoga class tonight, where I am very much looking forward to getting a good workout, both spiritually and physically.

1 comment:

Lyra said...

Spectacular!!!