The gentle world of beading

10 November 2015

I have got just slightly obsessed with beading techniques and videos.

This is all because I have committed to two sales - one at the end of November and one in early December - and I know from the sales where I have helped Rob and Andy that you need variety of stock. 

So, I had acquired some very soft patent leather. It has no 'structure' and runs easily through my sewing machine.  Ah ha, I thought, leather beads and jewelry. So off I went to research and a whole new world of beading opened up before my eyes. 

Now, I'm not sure why I am surprised really, since there is a bead shop at the Wakefield Estate next to the gallery which is stocking some of my work

This bead shop runs frequent workshops and there is always a table of ladies sitting beading. 

And Stephanie who owns it is a lovely helpful lady and I should confess that I pop in there quite a bit to get beading supplies that I use in my work. 

My initial intention was to simply use leather cord to make simple leather necklaces. And I have made a few which I really like.

But then I started looking a bit closer at the whole beading world and a whole arena of possibilities opened up before me. 

So I found a supplier of memory choker necklaces and sliver chain ( listed on eBay but based in Doncaster if anyone is interested) this company based in Loughborough which has amazing online service and these videos which are great for techniques as well as Stephanie at The Bead Scene at Wakefield Estate. 

If anyone is tempted, then Stephanie does wonderful kits using a kind of braiding called Soutache to make lovely Art Deco style pendants and bracelets. Anyone interested in needle work could get so sidetracked into beading. 

But enough! Two weeks to my first sale and I still have so much to do!


  1. Loving all the work you're making for the workshop sale - that looks a fabulous event, too! Do photograph some of the finished items before you have a sell out ;) Thanks for the procrastination from my own craft fair work watching that excellent committed to cloth video!

    1. Oh yes! Know that evil fiend Procrastination so well.

      But i have been pretty focussed actually, though still not sure I will have enough stock. Bit nerve wracking!

  2. Ooo that's a slippery slope you're stood at the top of Hilary! Lol. Bits are looking good though. Good luck with the sale.

    1. But I am trying very hard not to slip!

      Mind you, I have just bought some jewellery pliers - but they're an investment!

    2. PS I got a pack of a whole variety of jewellery pliers on sale at Hobbycraft one time. But as I am not actually making the wire bits (yet) I mainly use the needle nose pliers. and that is mostly for pulling reluctant needles through places they don't like to go.

  3. Ah yes, nearly 3 years down the road of not just sewing beads on fantastical gowns, but onto everything I can think of - such as O rings, Star washers, Springs - because we have an Aldi over the road and the boxes of machinery supplies looked interesting. and then collecting wooden coffee stirrers to see how that developed.
    Finally I am now actually watching You-tube videos to find out how you are really meant to be beading! But I like changing instructions too much to churn out the normal stuff.
    However...I have been trying for some time to find out where to get the soutache braid in so many colours, as I came across some places where they were doing a lot with it in Eastern Europe. So, you have done me a real favour. I will have to see where the Bead Scene and the Wakefield estate are in the grand scheme of things. (Like how far off the track when driving from Bracknell to York to see MIl and so on.)
    Looking forward to seeing the leather and beads concoctions.
    Sandy in Bracknell

    1. Gosh - Bracknell to York. Well, it is literally on the A5 north of MK and south of Towcester. If you go on the M1 then I would suggest coming off at J15 for Northampton and following the A508 west. When you get to the roundabout with the A5 you turn North and it's about 5 mins up the road. I guess about 20-30 mins off the M1 but a nice tea room and deli so you could stop for refill.

      Stephanie is lovely. Give her a ring.


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