Featured Artist!

I received an email today to let me know that I am currently Mackay Creatives Featured artist, which is exciting. Sometimes it can feel like nobody really cares as I work by myself and am still trying to get my art career off the ground, so it is really nice when my work gets acknowledged. Social media has also been great as receiving feedback from all the wonderful people who follow me helps keep me going.

This week I had an order from a friend for a small star and a bauble, so I stopped my current WIP to make them. Unsure as to how the colours would look together; I made two stars and let her pick how she wanted them, and she chose to have the purple outline. The other star will go in the pre made box for Christmas. As I was working on the order I also took the opportunity to make some more mini stars to add to my collection. How they will be displayed is a future decision but I plan to make many of them, each a different colour/pattern combination so that each one is an individual.

As for my experiment, you might remember that a while back I was experimenting with CRAW stitch and that it did not look right for what I wanted to make. So I have been experimenting again this time keeping to RAW stitches instead of adding in the peyote centre. MY first one I used both CRAW and RAW as the centre and while it worked I did not like how the centre was not firm and would curve out. Not that you can tell from the photo below. It looks fine otherwise and would work well in other projects I am sure.

Next was my experiment with just CRAW where I did the base with one row and the walls with two. It has worked fine, though I will be trying two more experiments before I decided on how I will do my church. Below is a photo of the base with the start of the walls, with the gap for the door and window slits. It is just a very basic design as it is always easer to experiment with simple designs first. I did try something similar ages ago, but the base had been more than one row and it had been way to thick to work as I progressed it just became too difficult to continue with it.

While this version is working quite well I am still hoping that my next experiment will work a little better as I find this one a little blocky and dense. It Dose not look quite as blocky now that it is almost done.

Being a 3d project, it is really hard to get a photo that captures it well, but I will have a video of it on Insta when it is finished and I also have WIP videos on Twitter as I am using my Twitter account as a mico blog which seems to be working out well.

When I was joining the top of the walls above the window slits I kept forgetting that they were two rows wide and had to pick apart the stitches as I realised I had forgotten and they were wrong. Oh well that is life sometimes.

Last night I cooked satay chicken for dinner and it was meh. And tonight I just brought fish and chips, as I really didn’t feel like cooking and didn’t know what to cook. Though I love eating good food cooking is not something I really like doing.

I will have to work at it as I intend to eat healthy.

Hum other than that I don’t have much else to mention today so I will leave it there and catch you next time.

Lou.

Ukrainian beadwork designers

Picture by Viktor Hanacek, via Picjumbo

Ok for anyone looking for Ukrainian beadwork designers to support by buying patterns; here is a list. If you know any and they are not on the list please let me know so that I can add them. This list is in no particular order, it’s just written up as I find them in a Etsy search, focusing on the Ukraine.

As someone who is feeling the pinch with rising prices I know it can be hard and overwhelming to donate money but if you buy a pattern that you will use and the money goes directly to that person and supports them and their family.

*While supporting Ukrainian Designers please do not buy Native American style patterns from them as it is cultural appropriation.

MiledyDi – StarSeller

Natassory

ViraelJewerly

Kowshop

ChristaBeads – StarSeller

GaligaPatterns – StarSeller

UkbeautyCustoms

LadyLunarCatMagicART – StarSeller

MyBeadsJewelry – StarSeller

ShpulkaShop

IncredibleJewelryArt

BeadCreativityByOlia – StarSeller

LunarRainbowStudio

OksAnnaBeadPatterns

RosaBeadStudio – StarSeller

HandmadeBySingurska

AnnieBeadJewelry

NataleeAlexDIY – StarSeller

UnicornBeadArt

KariaBijou

HelenBeadPatterns – StarSeller

BeadingPatterns4Fun – StarSeller

CrazyAcademy – StarSeller

LiliBeadPatterns

BeadEarringsKit – StarSeller

PysankaFolkArt

BeadingWithSmile

RichBeadPattern

NataOst

PtichkaNovi

BeadCrochetMelody

GalaFitz

NicoBeadsUA

Alright Stay safe everyone. ❤️ Lou

Amidst floods, wars and rising prices.

While the world has gone to hell in a handbasket, life keeps going on without pause. I’ve seen a lot of comments saying who cares about the invasion of Ukraine as it has nothing to do with us, which makes me so damn sad. And not just for the lack of empathy it takes to say that comment but the complete and utter ignorance of it too. The war might be physically half a world away but it will affect us for years to come in many ways no matter the outcome. And for all those who are saying that Putin is only after the Ukraine, that is the same BS that Hiller started with and look how that ended.

Sigh. Ok, let’s move on to beadwork as that is what you are here for. Here is the long, promised gift I finally got around to giving yesterday morning. It is a bit more wobbly than expected, but it stands up just fine and will hopefully last a long time.

One amazing lady set up a Facebook group called Beaders for Ukraine, where Beaders donated prizes to encourage donations to charities. The group raised between $41,800 and $43,000 all of which were directly donated to charities working in the Ukraine. And many people won amazing beadwork prizes.

A lot of Beadworker’s have also been buying digital patterns on Etsy from Ukraine designers and I have several waiting to print out when I get some more coloured ink. Mum brought black ink for me the other day at $69 dollars and the colour ink will cost me at least $71. I will have to buy a laser printer when I move as a good one is about $200 so it works out much cheaper in the long run. And saving $$$ is going to be a big priority now with fuel over $2 and getting close to $3 in some places, the cost of food going up and lord only knows what else. I will hopefully get time to make some of the patterns to highlight them soon.

Speaking of saving money I had to find a new photo editing site as I couldn’t justify spending $108 on basic editing at the moment. It took me a few goes but I found one that you can do basic editing for free. Some of the other sites you could do basic editing for free as well but they were not really set up to edit just photos and would have been a lot of stuffing around.

Anywho the small jar of stars above was a gift for my mum and to the right is a photo of my scarf so far. It will have to wait with my other half-finished projects awaiting more beads. Unfortunately it will most likely be a while before I manage to order more.

Here is what I have done on the jar so far, though I do have more flowers made up to put on. Progress on it has kind of stalled as I stopped to start the scarf and then days for girls has started back up this year and we have been house hunting which is slightly traumatic. And mum is on holidays so we have been catching up almost everyday. I will have more time on the school holidays but I might have to spend that time looking for extra work or a new job as I don’t think I will make enough to cover everything without dipping into my small amount of savings. It’s unfortunate as I quite like my boss and Ana who I work with.

Tulip tutorial by Рукоделие ТV

I had made up a few flowers in different colours to see what would work with the blue. It’s not in this photo but I decided on a silver and have made up a few to put on the jar. I will use the pink and a yellow for different flowers along with the white.

The Tulips I made from a youtube tutorial by Рукоделие ТV. The Russian flowers from Jill Wiseman, she may also have tutorials on RAW.

Other than that there is not much else to say on the beading side of things, I am looking at proper projects for funding, but I haven’t decided on anything at the moment, but I shall keep you updated.

Hopefully, my blog will see some basic improvements in terms of punctuation and clarity as I have started using Grammarly, though the basic free version is a wee bit frustrating. Still it has been giving me some helpful suggestions. Oh I will make a post about Ukrainian designers for anyone interested in buying some of their patterns to help out. I feel sorry for the Russian designers who don’t support the war but are suffering the consequences of it none the less.

One lady from Ukraine thankfully made it all the way to Mackay when she fled and was reunited with her daughter who lives here. And my fave podcast Talk Art featured a photographer who lives in Ukraine and had to flee when the bombing started. The Photographer Mark Neville has a book out called Stop Tanks with Books which he has been working on for six years. It is in my wish list.

And finally the south QLD/NSW floods. While Mackay did not flood this time we have still been affected as most of our distribution centres are in Brisbane or down south. So there have been lots of empty shelves but at least we didn’t have to deal with all the flood water like others did. Though it is one of the reasons it’s proving to be so hard to find a house as many of the ones for sale in Mackay are in flood zones. Well anyway keep your fingers crossed for us, that we find something soon.

All the best, and please stay safe and sane as best you can in this mad world. Lou.

Something a little different

Basic Russian leave tutorial by Jill Wiseman

Well since the last time I posted last week it kinda feels like the world has gone mad. I mean we are still dealing with a global pandemic, the first one to directly affect every single person in one way or another, and to top it off we are now dealing with another war. The people of Ukraine have already dealt with more than enough these last few years just like the rest of us. I hope this stupid ego driven war dose not last long. And then there is the flooding in Brisbane, which has moved south into NSW.

Still life goes on, just as it did in the 2008 floods of Mackay when we were sloshing through water in the unit we were renting and evacuating the retirement village across the street. Thankfully we got stuff up and safe and helped our elderly neighbour do

the same. A lot of people in the community helped each other out but of course there were some gits driving around sight seeing and causing bow waves that knocked over fences and caused more damage.

Anyway. As you can see here Millie has decided she needs to supervise this blog post to make sure I get it done, so I now have a cat sitting on me and am having to type around her. She is not too impressed, and would rather scratches.

On the house hunting front we are still looking and have even looked at building as an option, but we shall see what happens. I will have to get serious about packing up at any rate as I am to move by Mayish.

Ok on the beading front, I’m still working on the jar as pictured above.

I actually stared adding the vine in before I finished of the RAW cover, and I used an old necklace I made as a teenager as inspiration. I have no idea who designed the necklace or even if I made it in a workshop or from a pattern in a book, it’s just been too long. Anyway I did modify it to make it work on a flat surface as it was originally designed to spiral around a central string of beads. It couldn’t do that on the jar but it ruffled up nicely. Then I started adding in mini fern like ‘leaves’ and tried out some Russian leaves as well to see how they would look.

I figured it would be easer to continue adding in the little fern bits in the vine and then adding in the extra stuff after I had done that. It is not a realistic representation of a vine but is more inspired by the densely packed rainforest, where vines and creepers twist around trees and other plants and smaller plants grow in and on top of larger ones. it also looks like a small strip of rainforest from above, surrounded by cleared barren land. Not that the purple and white stripes look anything like land. The other night I ended up watching Jack the Gian Slayer while beading and after a while I noticed that I was watching a movie that centred around giant bean stalk, which is a type of vine.

Other than that I didn’t manage to participate in this last years/this years global project even though I had made some flowers for it. Hopefully I will manage to participate in the next one.

Oh and I won $10 the other day. which was a nice surprise. Well I had better finish up before dad turns up.

Flower Dodecahedron

Hey there, my post is a little bit late but hopefully you will forgive me as we have been busy looking at houses and I wanted to have my Ombre style flower done for the post. I know I’ve talked about doing videos and tutorials before but I’ll be getting a plain white background to put on my desk to make it a whole lot easer and to fix most of the problems I had before. So fingers crossed. Really I just want to find someone else to do it but oh well.

On the house front we found a place we loved but it was overpriced so we shall just have to keep looking into the others that made the short list and see what else comes up. Unfortunately a lot of house for sale in Mackay are in flood zones and even if we didn’t get flooded you still have to pay more in insurance so they are just not worth buying. It is really interesting looking at houses, people make some strange choices when it comes to layouts and well colour choices. And it looks like a large number just had the places cleaned and didn’t really do anything like a new paint job to make the place more attractive. I kind of get it but it does mean you will have fewer people interested as not everyone wants to move in and have to change stuff like that straight up.

The jar is coming along alright but I am a bit impatient to get to the next stage. I think I’ve decided to do a cascade of flowers down the side of this jar, but don’t hold me to that as I might change my mind. I also have a bigger jar that I want to do wings and horns on and have a strip where you can actually see what is in the jar. This one is a bit small for that.

I am also thinking of doing a neckerchief in this stitch as it would look super cool. Ah so many ideas and so little time.

I’ve also kept playing with the thread showing project and I quite like having the long threads exposed over the beads as it is interesting. Also in the photo below you can see how I weaved the threads on the side in the openings and over a bar of beadwork. it was a bit hard to do as it would pull on the beadwork and the tension was hard to maintain but it turned out alright and is worth playing around with. I did this one with three colours of thread but they are all very similar as I wanted to them to kind of blend in.

Alright I had better get going as I have quite a lot to do.

Lou

New Designs!!!

Hey there, I am late with my post again, ugh but I have been super busy and I do have a bit to post about as you can hopefully see from the photo above.

It started with the ball here. I use to hate thread showing as I thought it made my work look amateurish and so I worked hard to hide it away to give it a clean look which I love. But that means it’s not easy to see that I hand stitch my work together with thread and a few people have had trouble with the idea so I wanted a way to show my thread in an interesting way.

IRL its not actually easy to see the thread in this ball as its small and the thread tends to blend in, but it comes up nicely in the photo.

I also wanted to experiment with this as its something I’ve not seen before.

My next thread ball was this little red and yellow one, and I found the thread looked so much like mesh that it was hard to tell that it was actually thread. It still looks kinda cool though and it also highlights the join row in red.

Part of the reason this post was late was because I wanted to show off some of the things that can be done with thread other than Quilling which is cool, though it is something I have to improve on, myself. And I’ve been busy in general as well, looking for houses with my aunt and mum.

This blue ball I did with white thread and I like how it highlights the thread and how easy it is to see that it is actually thread. I also want to do some thread on the outside of the balls, crossing from one panel to the next but I had a few other things I wanted to get done first. Hopefully no one else gets there first. But its ok if they do

I am all about experimenting and trying things out and this is just one of the results. I wanted to show off some of the things you could do with adding thread into the design and depending on the open shape you can make several different designs in the openings with the thread. In this one each opening has a different coloured thread and is stitched in a different pattern/design.

I also want to make one that has more than one colour of thread in an opening to make a more interesting pattern.

Here is a different face of the ball which reminds me of drawing flowers in school. On the far face you can just make out a dreamcatcher inspired design. The dreamcather ones were super hard to do as the beadwork would move so the tension was super hard to get right. I will experiment with it more and am hoping my idea for fixing the problem will work.

My Flower ball experiment. Ok so this turned out nothing like I imagined it would. Like at all. Still it looks cool and I have plans to make another one in pinks to make it look more like flowers. I finished this one late last night and it was just a bit too late after finishing it and taking photos to do this post. This one was made as an Icosahedron, but with the horns (the points) folding the middle of the faces it looks more like a shape.

The horned ball was inspired by the yellow dress which has horns on the back. I want to add a full skirt to the yellow dress but don’t currently have the 15o beads I need to do it so it will stay as is for now. The Black and White hour glass dress came next and it is going to stay as a mini dress. It has a slight art deco vibe with the levels and it looks cool from every angle. You can seen the horns on the left photo below. and a side on view of the hourglass dress to the right.

I’ll put more photos and videos up on insta today.



Well this has taken up a lot of my morning so I’ll finish up now. Hopefully I’ll finish my 2021 recap post later this week.

all the best lou.

Life and all that…

Well the first month of the year is almost already gone and it feels like it only just started. But I have managed to get a few things done and am in the process of several more. I don’t have many photos to share today as I am in the middle of an experimental set and I would like to have a few different things done before I share as I’ve not seen it done before and kind of want to show of some of the things that can be done when I share it. Hopefully it will be done by next week without any problems as I already have three items done already. Also I will most likely be moving in late March So I spent the day sorting my things out; it will take a few more days over the next month but I want to be ready to move with as much easy as possible.

The beads my aunt gave me are now mostly sorted and ready to work with, once I finish polishing the brass. Hopefully I’ll also use some of them in other projects.

Next week I will hopefully have my first 3d model as a companion for my beadwork, and if it goes well I have a few plans in mind.

Unfortunately covid has meant I’ve been getting less hours which has really sucked and put a crimp in my savings plans. Other than that I don’t really have any other news.

Lou

Hello 2022

Well its been an interesting two weeks to say the least. Despite my intention to not bead for two weeks I ended up beading again in the first week, but I did take time to read physical books I had been leant so that is something at least. My Fuchsia cube just has the final layer to go but unfortunately it will have to wait until I have ordered more beads as I’ve run out of the colour I was using for that layer.

This was the sad sight I had when I was putting the last pink beads I had into the sculpture.

Thankful the next sculpture I am working on now will just have enough beads to get the last four bars done and I have more than enough to add the final layer on. I’ll post work in progress photos of it later after it has been gifted as I don’t want to spoil the surprise. But I have to say I am excited about it as it is coming up nicely.

I’ve also been experimenting.

With several complex projects in mind I’ve been experimenting to see how to make them possible. I’ll also be learning new techniques this year so my work will become more varied. hopefully. But I will still be adding to my current collections as well. And there is of course the few projects I’ve started and that need to be finished, they are also on my do do list this year.

Well that is it for now but I’ll write another post with my plans and goals for the year in more detail next week.

Lou.

All the stars from the night sky…

Ok I have a thing for stars and lights. And star lights. So for the last few days I’ve been working on these mini stars that cover small fairy lights. It’s a lot of work, as two parts of each star have to be made around the wires and there are 40 stars all up, for a total of 200 parts. I was just , moving the wire along as I went and this other unfinished sculpture happened to be a good place to drape what had been done as I worked on the rest.

I finished the last star tonight and now only have seven more open baubles to go for my plan.

So if you follow me on instagram or twitter then keep an eye out in a few days for a fun reel.

Speaking of reels I finally made one I had been meaning to do for ages and it has been doing ok. It’s been watched 3942 times, liked 155 times, has 8 comments, 7 messages and 9 saves. Not record breaking or anything but not bad for a cute little reel. Esp as I havn’t been on insta much the last few weeks. I’ve been struggling a bit with trying to get everything done.

My awesome aunt/landlady put my display cabinet together for me today, with some help from me and not so much help from Millie. Millie and I did have fun playing with the paper though. I brought this cabinet ages ago and it just never got made but we will be having a guest in the spare bed room for a while so there was a little bit of reorganisation/cleaning going on these last two days. We will also have another cat there will most likely be more cat photos.

I have to say that this photo of the cabinet is not the best one I took but IDK I felt the need to share how random our house is. And FYI the deer like the cats, came with living in the house. It’s just there. And as we already have other things around the place this cabinet went where there was room. It’s right outside my bedroom/studio door so it works out just fine. The water cooler was a gift from mum, as having moved in with the boys they didn’t need two. We use it all the time and it’s great, the only thing though is that using it all the time means we need to fill it up all the time.

I also made a light up tree topper for my golden set and I am going to leave it how it is, but next time I think I will need to use a wire with more lights as I don’t like how uneven it is despite my best efforts.

Hum other than that, I can’t recall if I mention that I closed my shopify as it was expensive and none of my sales were coming through it. Also it’s not really set up for custom orders.

I’ll try to do another post before Christmas and then I’ll be off the blog for two weeks as I need a break from things/need to get organised for next year. I started on my calendar today and it is now full of colour and has some important dates marked in.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays and hopefully everybody makes it through the new year safe and healthy despite the pandemic.

Lou.

Star Parts

WARNING: ONE PHOTO CONTAINS SWEARING

Well the year is almost over, there is basically just three weeks to go. I’ve got all my orders done to-date and am now working on a set for my own Christmas tree which will be included in my exhibition next year. I will start posting a monthly update on it next year, as I have a few things I want to achieve for the exhibition.

I’m saving up to apply for funding as you need $350 to join the platform that host Smarty Grants. It’s kinda stupid that you need money to ask for money but any who, I’m almost there and will hopeful be able to get a grant next year to help with the exhibition costs, such as pro photos, an exhibition brochure, canvases for the walls and such. Grabbing a spare jar we had has helped a lot to save the money up as otherwise it would just end up going in the bank and being spent on bills and whatnot.

Hopefully next week I’ll have a decent set finished on my tree and will put a reel up on insta.

Last week Joan and I helped mum peel mangos for mango chutney, which I have to tell you is a shit of a job, but it is so worth it as mum’s mango chutney is so good that dad even helps by getting the mangos for mum and gets a jar or two in return. (they don’t like each other) I don’t really like the insanity that is the Christmas month but I do love mango chutney and custard (not together 😂). Mum’s egg custard and the Paul’s brand brandy custard with a small slice of plum pudding, is heaven.

Mum and I also helped Joan move schools on Monday as moving schools is a big job for teachers as they have lots of their own books, toys and teaching aids to move. A lot of teachers will stay at the one school for this very reason.
I recently thanked one of my old teachers aids with a card and didn’t think much about it but she reached out via my aunt and sent me a card letting me know how much it meant to hear back from a former student so if you ever have a chance to thank a teacher or aid then take it as it will make their day.

We also had our Day’s For Girls break up on Saturday and exchanged gifts. I got this cute little puzzle. We also got a hand made heart ornament each, that says thank you. Mine broke on the way home but I’ve glued it back together and will be painting it so I’ll post photos of it in another post.

Hum other than that I’ll be taking the last week of this year and the first week of next year off from the blog, so only two more weeks for this year. The last week will be dedicated to planning for next year.

I found a new site to oder beads from and placed a small order, and found that it will be a good site for smaller orders although there are several things that I won’t be able to buy from it and will have to get from the old site, but it is good to have a second source to buy from at any rate, and I like being able to change the price from USD to AUD so I can compare in USD but see what I am paying in AUD upfront. It’s really handy.

Well I’ll write again soon, Louise