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!