Sunday, February 21, 2010

When I started beading....

I started beading in 1992 sort of on a dare. A friend wanted a pair of earrings in a class display and said she would re-pierce her ears if I made them for her. Boy were things different 18 years ago!

When I started beading, patterns were charted on graph paper mostly by hand and were in black and white

When I started beading, nymo was about it for thread and English or Pony needles were about it.

When I started beading, Delicas were a myth.

When I started beading, Japanese seed beads were just beginning to be coveted for uniformity and colors.

When I started beading, the internet was in it's infancy and we only connected with other beaders at classes or bead shops.

There were no thread burners or crimping pliers when I started beading.

When I started beading, there were very few books on beading available.

When I started beading, I was hungry for new techniques and patterns.

When I started beading, beaded ornament drapes were just starting to make appearances.

When I started beading, there were very few bead shops to choose from.

When I started beading the colors and selection of shapes of pressed glass were slim pickings.

Ok - now comment on what it was like when you start beading? Tell the year and what I missed on my list.


Carol said...

I don't know what you missed. When I started beading, it was back in the 70s. Very Bohemian. There was one bead shop in a town near by..I think they smoked pot in the back room and tried to cover the smell with incense in the store front. I think I did macrame necklaces and bracelets before I ever strung a necklace. I thumbed my nose at seed beads right up intil 2008 when I began bead embroidery. Funny how things change, huh.

Mary T Designs said...

While I am very new to beading, I can totally relate to some of your comments. I live in a rural area where bead stores are non-existant. I have to order on-line and sometimes I get what I expect, sometimes not. It would be so much easier to go to the store, see the beads, and then select. Not possible in my world. I can only hope that things will progress in the future.

Margaret-Anne said...

Great idea for a post, Pamy!

Let's see...

-- When I started beading, it was the middle of 2003.
-- I had just relearned how to walk after seven months in a wheelchair, recovering from a near-fatal accident at a science fiction writers' workshop.
-- I'd been to the art show at Toronto Trek, a science fiction convention in Toronto, and had won an auction on a lovely piece of beaded jewelry, featuring a dichroic glass pendant on a spiral rope chain.
-- I studied that piece for hours on the trip back to Ottawa, and decided that I wanted to learn how to do that type of beading.
-- I had no idea what the technique was called, so I spent many hours searching for jewelry designs on the internet.
-- During that search, I discovered the beadchat group on yahoogroups, and subsequently Pamy's group.
-- Over the past six-and-a-half years, I've learned many techniques, participated in all of the swaps on Pamy's Swaps (yay, swapmom!), and made many online beading friends. I've purchased patterns and kits, and have branched out into designing my own jewelry now.
-- When I started, I had no idea what nymo was, or where to buy it -- the dichroic glass and spiral rope piece was on thread, so that's where I started. I tried quilting thread first, but wasn't satisfied with it, and switched to upholstery thread; I've been using it ever since (along with some nice thin wire).
-- Things I've learned: really long pieces of thread have a habit of turning into the Gordian knot; delica beads are great for designs requiring multiple passes; nothing sparkles quite like Swarovski crystals; and, most of all, beading is fun!!!


joaniebeadgood said...

When I started beading, around 1970, it was all stringing, I never even heard of beadweaving. Beadweaving didn't come to my attention until the magazines and the internet and LBS in a town as small as Morgantown, WV.
When I started beading, I thought all the beautiful native beadwork I'd seen was embroidered.
When I started beading I never saw tiny seed beads. It was only what you could find at the local WalMart, a crafts fair or the occasional mail order. And you seldom knew what you were actually getting since it was mostly "assortments".

fancydance said...

When I started beading, in the mid 80's, there were no classes, no internet to speak of, and no bead magazines.
When I started beading, there were no Walmarts in every town so the only store to buy beads in the area was a Tandy Leather store in the city. Delicas were fleetingly mentioned in a couple beading books, but not available anywhere in the area. Japanese beads were to be avoided because they were highly irregular and misshapen...Czech beads were the best you could get in both seed beads and pressed glass.
When I started beading, there were few pattern books available, so if you wanted a specific pattern, you had to make it yourself on graph paper copied out of one of the few beading books.
When I started beading, Nymo was the only beading thread available and English beading needles were the needles of choice (Japanese needles were flimsy and the eyes broke out easily).
When Bead & Button magazine came out, my grandmother gave me a subscription for the very first year...I still have them!

Pamy said...

I have another one:

When I started beading, Jewelry Crafts and Bead & Button were babies and Beadwork didn't even show up for 2 more years.

ljsumner said...

When I started beading, it was summer of 2001. I was going through a bad divorce and I was now a single mom of 4 kids and had a 9 month old baby. I was looking for a way to be a stay at home mom. I joined a "work from home" data base and found a company that will train you to make beaded earrings. I had already been doing embroidery and cross stitch needle work since I was a teenager so I thought, "I could make those!". I didn't have a lot of money and the $35.00 kit seemed cheaper than most of the other jobs, so I ordered it.

Little did I know that it wasn't going to be easy to get my earrings approved by the company that taught me to bead. Every pair I sent off to them was returned. It was mostly tension problems with the thread in the fringe, because they would never hang "just right". So I kept practicing, but kept getting discouraged, because I wasn't making any money. I also didn't like the colors they sent, amber seed beads, and black bugle beads. I thought they would be much prettier with other seed beads.

When I started beading, the only place I knew locally to buy seed beads was Ben Franklin crafts, just down the street. We don't have a Walmart. They were called "gick beads". I don't know why, but they came in a little 7 gram box. I bought silver lined aqua and silver lined pink seed beads and made some pretty earrings using the black bugle beads.

A month later was 9/11. Remember when everyone got so patriotic and started flying flags from their windows and cars? Well, I thought that red, white, and blue beaded earrings would be perfect. I ran back down to Ben Franklin to purchase the beads.

I had just joined eBay in July, but only as a buyer. I decided to put my second pair of "Patriotic Earrings" on there. (I kept the first pair for myself) They sold like hotcakes! And I was hooked!
By Christmas, I had a line of Christmas earrings to sell.

I guess it was a pretty good time to start beading, because I had the internet to search for free patterns and eBay to sell from. I couldn't go to craft fairs or shows with my little baby girl, so the internet was just perfect for this stay at home mom.

When I started beading, there was no beading forum, or was there?
Nobody else understood my excitement of receiving beads in the mail.
Nobody else in my family does beading, nor do my friends, so finding this forum was very exciting for me. I'm looking forward to making some new friends here =)

Anita T said...

I live in the UK and I started beading over 40 years ago!
I think it's easier to list what there was, rather than what there wasn't, because there wasn't a lot! lol!
There were seed beads, called rocailles - no particular size, basic colours - red, white, blue, green, black, yellow.
There were a few bugle beads.
And that, my friends, was that!
There were loom patterns, which is where I started, until I found a book with basic patterns, like daisy chain.
No special threads, I used sewing cotton. I'm surprised anything survived!
And then a bead shop opened in the centre of London. And Bead & Button appeared (I still have issue one!).
And the rest, as they say, is history.
And you can never, ever, EVER, have too many beads!!! :D