Bead Soup is Served!

I have recently learned that tubular bead crocheting with gemstone chips employs the same part of the brain you use driving through a blinding thunderstorm when there’s no safe place to pull over;  you keep plugging away slowly,  steadily and carefully, concentrating on what is immediately in your path and ignoring distractions.

I could have done a stringing project for the Kalmbach Books Bead Soup Party, but I wanted to do something different. Linda Jacobs-Pence of Your Beading Heart sent me some yummy and inspirational bead soup. I decided to try tubular crochet but could not find much information so I went by the seat of my pants as usual. I added chips and seed beads to the mix and was going to make this a wrap around double layer necklace, but it looked terrible! Then I got the idea of knotting the crocheted seed bead section of the necklace and it all fell into place. The beads around the clasp were also part of the bead soup. I didn’t want to hide the pretty metal beads Linda sent in the crochet work so I decided to showcase them in the closure but had to come up with an idea for a closure because a toggle was clearly not going to cut it.

I ended up attaching a rare earth magnetic clasp to the necklace and beading a “turtle neck” for it to hide in.  I added a small safety chain just in case the magnet fails, but it’s pretty darn strong.

The seed beads and chain are from my stash.  The drum-shaped beads and 3mm bronze beads came from Your Beading Heart.

Here’s a closeup of tubular crochet with chips and 6/0 and 8/0 beads.  I used black crochet cotton.

Here’s a close up of the knotted crocheted rope.  I used a sparkly blue yarn to crochet this portion.  The necklace is about 24″ long and not as heavy as it looks.  It’s easy to take on and off too which is a design aspect I think is very important.

You can read the story behind this Bead Soup creation here and here.

If you’re in Philadelphia this Sunday,  don’t forget

Dear Fleisher, 4×6 Inches of Art is a biennial fundraising exhibition showcasing the work of hundreds of artists from Philadelphia and beyond. Artists submit original postcard size works in a wide range of media and styles, each of which is exhibited anonymously and sold on a first-come, first-served basis for $50.

Some  well-known artists have contributed work.  So have some not so well-known artists like me.  The buyer does not know the name of the artist until after the piece is sold.

Proceeds support Fleisher’s nationally recognized award-winning arts education programs.

Click here for more information.