I'm always looking for something different to make with beads. So, when I saw a book called Mini People available from The Beadworkers Guild in England, I knew I had to buy it. And I have certainly not been disappointed with my purchase. I am having so much fun with it!
The instructions in the book are fairly easy to follow, but you should have some beadweaving experience if you buy it. That is because there aren't any line-by-line tutorials. The author, Ann Mockford, calls her instructions "recipes", which feels accurate. There are brick-stitch graphs for the clothing, and the individual doll recipes say to use this or that skirt, jacket, arms, etc. for a particular character, so you are thumbing back and forth through the book. They aren't difficult to make or put together, so if you are adventurous, give it a try!
There are eight different characters in the book, plus a baby doll sized fairy. They are all put together in basically the same way, but there are different ways to make their clothes which turns them into different characters. Once you've made a couple of these, you can expand on the ideas in this book, and make hundreds of different styles of fairies, elves, and more.
I have made two figures so far. I really enjoyed making both of them.
The first one I made was this little fairy. She is based on the fairy that you an see on the cover of the book, above. She even has a petticoat under her skirt, but you can't see it in this picture.
The next one I made was this elf in Christmas colors. He is very loosely based on one of the elves in the book, the one that you can see on the cover, above, holding the umbrella.
I made both of their faces myself by using Sharpie pens to draw on a wooden bead.
I hope you enjoyed my book review. If you have any questions, ask away in the comments.
I can usually play with kittens and resist bringing one home. Booger has been enough cat for me. But my neighbor had a small litter of feral kittens, and one of them just broke my heart. This little tortoise-shell is the one who broke and then captured it.
The first day she was so scared! But she was also very hungry, so I hand-fed her little bits of cat food at a time. It was only a couple of days before she would happily run to me whenever I called her.
I named her Pippa. I had been calling her pipsqueak, so I just shortened it.
She was about 10 weeks old when I got her. Now she is about 14 weeks old. She loves to play and she follows me everywhere I go in the house. No animals allowed in the bead studio though (for their safety and my sanity), so she sits outside the door when I'm in there. I've been leash-training her, and it's actually going pretty well. She's been getting her shots, and she has an appointment to be spayed on Dec. 20. The animal league here, Peggy Adams, does the spay, microchip, and rabies shot for $75. Oh, yeah, we're going high tech, she's getting a microchip!
And now both Pippa and I say goodnight and sleep tight.
One question that is always being asked on beading forums and chat groups, by new and old beaders alike, is "What do you use to cut your Fireline thread?". And up until now, the consensus was to use a pair of children's Fiskar-type scissors. They do work well. At first. But if you bead with any regularity then you know that they get dull almost immediately.
So, I had way too many pairs of those scissors laying around, then I spent way too much on a super-duper scissor sharpener, and then I ruined a wire cutter thinking I'd had a great idea. But I still couldn't get a clean cut on a piece of Fireline thread. And it was really making me mad.
I saw a review in one of the bead magazines of a new fishing line cutter sold by the Boomerang Tool Company. So, of course I ordered one. They had a choice of small blades, small blades with a light, or long blades. Not knowing if this thing was even going to work, I chose the long blades, for $15.99 plus $5.00 shipping.
Can I just say...WOW!!! These really are the best thing since sliced bread! They cut Fireline effortlessly. I'd bet that I could throw a piece of Fireline in the air, snip it with these things as it floats down, and still get a clean enough cut to thread a needle!
Everybody, and I mean everybody, needs to buy themselves one of these things immediately. It is always at my side. I can tell it will not go dull because it has serrated blades, not smooth ones. So no sharpening them either. You can thank me later, just go buy yourself one of these things NOW. Here is a link to their search page with the different cutter styles. All you have to do is pick one.
Hi everybody. *Yawn* I feel like I've just woken up from a long hibernation. What's the date of that last post? June 2015? ?!? Well I'm awake now, and I'm posting. I just will not give myself impossibly lofty goals for myself and the blog this time. I'm going to post at least once every other week, and in between if I think of anything else interesting. I should be able to handle that much without going off schedule.
Along with coming out of blog hibernation, I'm giving my Etsy shop a new push. I renamed it - Bead Street Studio - and I've been photographing and adding a new product every day or two. If I spread them out like that, then later I'll be renewing every day or two also, so constantly having new activity in the shop. I don't really need the income, but I bead all the time anyway. There is only so much that I can wear, or even give away, so I'm hoping to make some scratch for more new beads by selling some of my projects. We'll see how it goes.
I made a new shop logo. I gave up on trying to think of cat names for the store, so named it for what it is, and just added a cat byline underneath. I like it now.
And I renamed my Facebook page to match the Etsy shop, so pop on by and say hello to me over there.
And...that's it for now! See you in a week or two!
oh, yeah, P.S. - how could I forget? I got a new little kitten too! Her name is Pippa. Pics and story coming in a future blog post.