>My Hobbies…

>I’m a Design and Technology Teacher by training. What this means in reality is that I’m never far from a pencil and paper (handy for my other career that) and I am always in the midst of a project.

I’ve made quite a few things: Cushion covers, Nightlight holders, picture frames, knitted hats, earrings, bracelets, brooches and badges, are just some of them. I can make things out of wood, metal and plastic, but that requires a few more tools than I have at home currently, so I tend to stick to jewellery and textiles at home.

Oh for a proper workshop / studio…

Anyway. I thought that I would tell you about my current obsession. It’s linked to my passion for making jewellery and came from my studying of Jewellery magazines.

One of the magazines I get is “Make Jewellery”. Issue 6 had a feature on Bead Weaving – I went to Hobbycraft, picked up the bits and pieces and was hooked.

The first thing I tried was a daisy chain bracelet – didn’t come out very well though. Then I browsed my local Library (not just for fiction – although I did that as well) and found “The Encyclopedia of Beading Techniques” by S. Withers and S. Burnham – I found out about all the different stitches you can do (brilliant book that – well worth buying) so I attempted a Square Stitched Cuff. That turned out better; but not brilliant.

I browsed the internet and found – http://www.free-beading-patterns.com – I tried the Warrior Pattern, a Sioux Feather pattern combined with a design of my own, added a fringe and made a choker. It’s much better than either of my first two efforts – looks almost professional!

It’s gone a bit further than just hand stitching now though…

The Encyclopedia and the websites mentioned Looms. So the next time I went to Hobbycraft (I can’t stay away from the place) I bought a simple wire one. Just setting it up was a challenge – thankfully the Encyclopedia had nice clear instructions (much better than the ones in the box with the loom) and it only took me three hours!

*rolls eyes*

The first pattern I attempted was another combination of the Warrior pattern and a design based on an alphabet I found on the beading patterns website – I love that website as much as I do my own – and decided to make a wristband for Number One Son.

So far, it hasn’t turned out too bad.

I wonder what I’ll try out next? Maybe something from the Knitting Magazine I picked up the other day? Or maybe the sundress in the Sewing Magazine from last week? Maybe I’ll go back to Glass Painting, although that would mean another trip to Hobbycraft – I haven’t got any materials for that…