When the COVID situation sunk in, I knew I needed a new project. I had a package of air dry clay in the cupboard destined for art projects with my grandkids, but I decided to open it and have a go at making clay beads. Inspired by earrings that I had just purchased on Etsy from Fern Jewellry Design who I follow on Instagram, I got to work making my first necklace. I had no beading supplies like proper thread, closures, or other spacing beads so I just used what I had for my first effort.
My first effort was pretty rough, but a second try ended up better with a coat of modge podge and a bit more planning. And then of course I got on my iPad and created a design for my Society6 shop to apply on products.
Next step – colored beads.
I had some beads left over from the second necklace which I painted with water color and sealed with modge podge. Inspired by my bead mark making, I went back to digital work on my iPad.
Next I wanted to try natural dyes, so I created a small science lab in my kitchen, crushing berries and cooking turmeric and cinnamon to see what would stick. Ends up, this is complicated and I did not really have much success color wise, but it was fun and smelled amazing like I was baking and cooking at the same time. I ended up with a lot of beads that I embellished with the new acrylic pens I ordered on Amazon along with my black sharpies. I ordered connector beads and earring bits and pieces and all sorts of beading string, acrylic paints, and jewelry glue – as if I was in the beading business. It was quite a whirlwind, but alas, it was just for fun. Each bead was like a painting and took a lot of time and effort and I loved every one. I ran out of steam after a few weeks of intense work, but I do have a few nice necklaces and earrings that will remind me of this time in 2020 when staying home meant staying alive.