The Secret Life of Walter (Jean) Mitty
I was in Cleveland last week taping a few segments for Beads, Baubles, and Jewels. It’s so much fun to go to the taping of this show because the Green Room is always filled with wonderful jewelry-makers I know or who I’ve heard about but I’m just meeting for the first time. It’s a great opportunity to share ideas, techniques, and resources.
While chatting with this creative group, I found myself interjecting conversations by saying, “Oh, yes! I edited a book with that technique in it—you should contact the author,” “There’s a great piece in a book I edited that you should see,” or “I was writing XX book when that happened.” Geez, I thought . . . Are my everyday conversations really guided by the books I’ve worked on? Even when talking non-crafts? Oh, I so wish those interjections sounded more like, “I met a Tasmanian hermit who wore a crown hammered with that pattern when I was on my spirit trek last year” or “A dashing Italian named Armando and I recreated that thread path with jet skis through the Venice Canals last week.” That would make for much more juicy conversation, don’t you think?
Try this Daisy Chain Variation
When I was on the way back from Cleveland, I was checking out the books available for this killer book sale on Beading Daily and ran across Beaded Cords, Chains, Straps, and Fringe at 50% off through this Friday. It made me remember how much fun it was to write it. Jamie Hogsett and I sat around the Beadwork office thinking up all kinds of innovative stitches to feature in the book, trying to impress each other with our beading prowess . . . No, no . . . that’s not how it happened. Uh . . . Jamie Hogsett and I traveled the world by hot-air balloon and had arm-wrestling matches to gain the secrets behind these stitches from bead masters on each continent. . . Right?
One of the techniques featured in the book is daisy chain. It’s one of those simple techniques, ripe for experimentation. Here’s one variation I came up with on the plane home that I think you might like:
|1. Tie a tension bead onto the end of 3' of thread. String 10 size 11° seed beads; pass through the third just strung, forming a circle and stem.|
|2. String 1 size 8° seed bead; pass back through the seventh size 11° strung in the previous step to seat the daisy’s center.|
3. Repeat Steps 1 and 2 to the desired length. Weave through beads to pass back through the sixth size 11° in the previous daisy added.
4. String 4 size 11°s; pass through the third size 11° in the final daisy added. String 1 size 8° and pass back through the first size 11° added in this step. Weave through beads to pass back through the sixth size 11° added in the next daisy.
5. Repeat Step 4 to the end of the chain.
The results are a pretty little chain that can actually be made wider by adding more rows. Have you ever tried this one? Or maybe done other experiments with daisy chain? Perhaps you even have a good story about the adventures you took to learn new stitches? Please share any and all on the website!