Sunday, June 19, 2011

Blanket planning...

decided to start my new project; ordered pearl white and translucent light blue beads in size 10/0 (a bit smaller than size 8 pony beads) for a fairly traditional blanket strip and will make it 60 inches in length (although a smaller size with a University of Oklahoma medallion seems like a nice gift idea!). I will use a canvas backing (not sure I have enough on hand so may need to poke around a fabric store soon), stretching the material on my large Q-Snap quilt frame just as I did for cradle covers....this technique really keeps the fabric taut and bead lines straight. I can move it around and will probably work on it outside under the new canvas gazebo set up on my back deck. Can make the 5 inch rosettes first and then try to improve my lazy lane stitch (another option which I actually prefer is to use a single needle running stitch). Finally, I will attach a hide backing (may be a good excuse to use up the cow hide split that I bought for moccasins but have decided not to use for that project). Likely it will just be hung up on a wall but I think it will be an attractive element in my friend's home.

But while I wait for the beads to arrive (probably a week or so) I should work on some other projects that are partially done and also need to make a retirement gift to take to a party in a few weeks. That should keep me occupied!

Monday, June 13, 2011

New Project: Blanket strip

Hooray!! after much thought about where to go next, I have finally decided to tackle a blanket strip...will make it on canvas and then back with hide. Need to decide on colors and order enough beads but its something I've wanted to do for some time and the decision was worked out by hours of staring at a framed print in my bedroom. I cant copy the image, but here's the link:

Here is a nice strip but I'm not sure if I should use a traditional style or something modern (maybe making OU medallions?). Need to decide on length as well: short for a starter project or full length as I don't know when I would ever do another?? Hmm, decisions and more decisions....

Sunday, June 12, 2011


A friend kindly gave me a Tandy gift card and I finally went over to the local Tandy store to see about buying some hide (was looking at their pig suede splits on-line) but the store is closed and gone, bummer. I am a bit surprised...granted they never had a lot of customers but there was always someone in there and they offered classes. Web shows the only Indiana stores are in Ft Wayne & Indy, too far to go but happily there are stores in both Oklahoma City and Tulsa!! I plan to drive home very soon and will be in both towns so I can shop happily in a land where cowboys and Indians still do leather craft.

I didn't go to the local shop very often as it was a bit out of my usual path but I liked it; they had a variety of items not found at other area craft stores and the employees were nice. In retrospect I should have shopped there more often but that wouldn't have been enough to keep it open I suppose; I can still buy on-line but I like to touch the materials before I buy if possible. I recently purchased cheap deer hide from Crazy Crow and was shocked at its inferior quality and nasty smell...I had tossed the receipt so couldn't return, so I shipped it to Oklahoma where a friend happily accepted. I then placed an internet order with Wandering Bull and received one of the most beautiful deer hides I have ever seen or touched so I guess its just luck of the draw.

I'll shop at Tandy in Oklahoma and wait to start my bag; just as well as I need to do other projects. Still I will miss my local store...

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

pipe stem

its not very fancy but I did finish decorating a pipe stem for a friend; he bought a wooden stem from Crazy Crow so I wrapped with white deer hide, added some beads to the ends, beaded the quills of 3 hawk feathers and hung them along with white horse hair, red glass and brass beads. He was pleased with it (but suspect he wasn't keen on the bead work pattern, a bit too busy maybe) and took me to lunch.

It was an interesting project and I tried to learn about pipes & stems in preparation. He showed it to an art dealer who asked me to make another but already have too many projects in line; tipi possibles bag is likely the next one up!