Before leavingOregon in 2008, I gave away all my cross stitch supplies, thinking I’d lost interest in that particular craft obsession. But I kept all my dog themed cross stitch patterns so part of me knew there was a chance I might work a few more patterns. Sure enough last June I took on two Border Collie cross stitch projects. Wondering if this was really my absolute last cross stitch project I Googled “Border Collie cross stitch patterns” and found more projects that are appealing. But my real passion continues to be beading.
For Christmas I made a friend a beautiful bracelet from the April 2006, Bead and Button magazine, called, “Take It Easy”. The description says, “Loops of beads cross over a two-drop peyote band for a luxurious bracelet.” It is an easy project and will not disappoint you. Be careful when starting the loops to always, “Sew through the beadwork to exit the SECOND bead from the edge in the first row”. It gives it a more polished looking edge than if you exit the first bead. The gold color I used gave it a rich look but possibly one made in black with red Swarovski’s would also look great.
A chain maille project I also made for a Christmas present was from Bead Style magazine, July 2007. It combines gemstones with simple Byzantine chain maille. This was my first time attempting a Byzantine pattern with jump rings. It took a few minutes to translate their directions into my brain, past my fingers, to make the end result look the same as their picture. But when I figured it out I was very pleased and you will be too if you give it a try. Sterling silver jump rings are very expensive but I’ve found the silver-plated brass rings from Fire Mountain Gems were good enough for me to use while learning the design. Since then I’ve purchased Sue Ripsch’ book, Classic Chain Mail Jewelry, which has several projects to keep me busy.
My current project, which I just finished, is a Border Collie (or Aussie if you want) peyote amulet bag. The pattern is finished but I still have to add a necklace and fringe. It was a lot of work and for a while at least, will be my last amulet bag. Working with Silamide turned out to be very frustrating since the thread kept on snagging and splitting. I’ll stick with Fireline, thank you.