Beau Dangles

Handcrafted Jewelry — Designed to be Different

Looking Beyond Beads


Where do your ideas come from? It’s natural to look at what other beaders are doing — in magazines, online, at shows.

But is the work of beaders the best place to generate fresh approaches to our own work?

During the metal working course I took this summer our instructor, Linda Chow, suggested that instead of looking at what other jewellers have produced we look further afield — to nature, to books on architecture, to everyday objects like chairs or tables or parking meters.

The morning after her suggestion I found myself at the kitchen table sketching cross-sections of kiwi and bananas — discovering in the process some clever ideas for earrings. After class that day I wandered around campus, picking up leaves and some unusual seed pods — and doing more sketching.

Last weekend at Culture at the Creek in Airdrie’s Nose Creek Park I found myself studying the work of self-taught artist Becky Kundert whose booth was near mine.

These three pieces — particularly the red and blue — intrigued me. Ideas began to tickle my imagination. A day or so ago I pulled out several kinds of blue beads and soon found myself with a lovely necklace design that I probably wouldn’t have found but for Becky’s piece.

So, stuck for ideas? Take a look at what artists in other fields are doing. You might just find the inspiration you’re looking for. 🙂

Author: Sally

Beads? What can I say — they snuck up on me when I wasn't looking. Now I'm hooked.

3 thoughts on “Looking Beyond Beads

  1. I absolutely agree with this. Also, great ideas can even come from books, films, fashion (sometimes I see a picture of a dress, for example and imagine a necklace that would look great with it), and so on.

    Great post!

  2. Ain’t it great that there are so many ideas out there, just ready for the picking. I found a library book on the great cathedrals of Europe. Lovely photos — but I kept seeing the buildings instead of the design. On a whim I turned the book upside down. Suddenly I began seeing possibilities on every page.

  3. I am always amazed and inspired when I see real creativity and talent. Sometimes even a little intimidated. It’s great to see things in a different way and an approach to a design I hadn’t thought of. Inspiration is everywhere if we look.

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