Friday, July 9, 2010
here is a great site for information about vintage beads:
the European hobby folks seem super obsessed with getting all the right colors etc and this is important for museum restoration work as well. There is always controversy in the museum & collector worlds if some thing should be repaired; as a beader I say yes...someone worked hard to make a nice project; missing beads can easily be added (especially if they can be appropriately matched) and it returns the project back to a state of completeness (which was the craft worker's intent). The photo page at this website has a very interesting read on how some of this restoration work is done. I think this would be a very interesting job!
I like the vintage colors, they seem softer...northern folks (Crow etc) use pastels and because of the Crow/Kiowa kinship we see some of these down in Oklahoma too. I don't do much work with the old colors as they are usually a bit more expensive to buy, but I think they would be good for just the right type of project (perhaps a male doll). I should just add 1 or 2 to each order and slowly develop a little pile, saved for special occasions!
I've been thinking of this more as I plan out Ray's blanket strip...old ones were made with pony beads and some new ones are in seed. I don't see much of a price difference, especially when buying in larger quantity such as a kilo (hank=24 strings, kilo=12 hanks). I'm leaning towards 8/0 pony beads and found a William Soule photo of an unidentified Naisha man with blanket taken at Ft Sill sometime in the early 1870's ...I may adapt his strip design which has a white background and most likely a dark blue for contrast. This piece has unusually large rosettes; hard to determine exact dimensions, but the wide strip appears more than 4 inches and the rosettes must be close to 8! Its a remarkable beading effort...