The Architectural Serpent has taken a very Gaudiesque turn. This is unlikely to displease Lysa, but you never know. She may reject it. I’m making pieces for everyone on the Edit Team.

After all, the Edit Team… my God. What troopers, what geniuses, what unfailingly polite taskmistresses. They polished the book so beautifully.

Gaudiesque Sea Serpent, Kate McKinnon, CGB Vol II, 2013

I’ve noticed some interesting things about this Serpent. For one, the Horn structure is dominating the natural ruffle that the beads make where I stepped down from size 8 to size 15 rounds. The rounds echo the slope and peak of the Horns, and I can see that from one row of horns I could grown an entire field of rippling mimics with nary an increase nor a decrease ever placed.

Does Gaudi not sing out in this one? He would adore it, together we would bead a building.

Gaudi-House, photo courtesy of Irene Turner

I read the whole book last night. Cover to cover, sitting in an airplane flying out of sunny, warming Tucson, and then in airport, with CNN blaring in the background. Astoundingly happily, magically, the book was so beautiful, so excellent, so engaging, I just forgot the horrors both of chasing winter across the frozen tundra and of CNN’s general existence. I found myself laughing in a most unladylike fashion, honks of laughter, when I would run across an absurd bit of silliness in an otherwise admirably nerdly paragraph.

It was excellent. Most excellent.

One of the pages I changed was the sizing page. In fact, I added words to three sizing pages, words that basically said, “Look, people, this work is completely wack. No two counts have come out the same size once. Even with our combined century of power beading, we have nothing intelligent to say about sizing this work.” I mean seriously. Some pieces shrink an inch and a half, some a quarter inch. I am going to need a lot more time before I can make generalizations. I hope that the people making the work from Volume I will help inform the sizing discussion for Volume II.

I feel silly, not being able to say much except “For God’s sake make a ring to test your planned bead combination.”




17 thoughts on “so…

  1. Well, it’s just like “stitch gauge” when you do knitting or crochet, no two people will get the same one. You would think because beads aren’t stretchy like yarn, that it wouldn’t vary greatly, but it really does! All due to the beads used (because even beads from the same manufacturer are not all the same size)( why are black seed beads ALWAYS smaller?), the threading medium, and the tension of the beader. Gad, I am WAY tense!

  2. if she rejects it, I’d accept it with pleasure – droooling : ) to be able to bead that fast is a benediction. I can see you laughing out loud in the airport hall, and could love you just for that. Sizing… I am a lucky girl with that… I rely on my star, and it works nearly always… but I am a bad example because I don’t make bracelets that often…

    • Admittedly I have put my right hand into severe pain by beading tightly for four days straight. I blame The Guardian. And Simon Baker. He’s in his boxer shorts like every third episode.

    • I can make you a sea serpent if you like! It’s for you to choose! Edit Team gifts are being sent out with the book packets in… three weeks! SO EXCITING!

      • and you say that whilst your hand hurts? I know the pain… and when the pain is there, it is hard to get rid of. OOOOOOh, just 3 weeks? wonderful! I would be proud to wear anything beaded by you… I love so many things in your book. my very favorite one is Gabri’s ‘The Devil’s Eggs
        Are Hatching’.

  3. That piece is mindbending! I laughed out loud at your sizing commentary. Teaching and working at a yarn store, gauge comes up all of the time. When I tell people to play with it and see what works, some get it and are fine and some about pee in their pants. These yarn folks ought to try different sizes and brands and colors of beads!

    • A lot of beaders are used to being hand-fed their patterns a bead at a time, and never asked to think about what they are making. The people who prefer that approach will be horrified by CGB.

  4. I love that cuff and it’s curl…that blue!!!!
    All beading varies…we all know it. There’s thread, tension and beads…all variables that change everything. You just deal w/it.

    • I have never seen sizing vary so wildly as in the Horned pieces. Lord. People start out with a gaping giant bangle and end up with a toe ring. How, I don’t know. But they do. And they say, “No, my tension was tight all along!”
      Or they don’t shrink at all, like your Helix. WTF?

      • I’ve been unable to bead for a couple of months – seems what I call “beader’s thumb” has reared its ugly head again. Oddly enough I am able to knit and I now have a lovely collection of socks! My hand seems much improved and I hope to start a wrap piece soon with the lovely delicas you sent me. Foot long you say? Whew!

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