Beader’s block is a predicament that can effect all beaders at one time or another. One day, you’re breezing through projects, and the next you’re completely stumped for inspiration. Sometimes this occurs when we’re not sure what colors to use, or because we’re tired of using the same old techniques. Many beaders flip through back issues of magazines, searching for that creative spark. In her book, A Bead in Time, Lisa Crone reminds us that inspiration can be hidden in the things that we see every day.
In her warm and friendly written voice, Lisa guides designers through a creative journey from photographs, to the daily commute, and on through the unexplored aisles of the craft store. Each chapter begins with an overview of combining inspiration themes with techniques and materials. The 35 fun projects are divided into four categories: Metro Mixes, inspired by architecture and interior design; Outdoor Ideas, inspired by nature and all it’s beauty; Life’s Pleasures, with pieces that resemble comfortable locales and delicious treats; and Funky Finds, a look at how unique objects and materials can make for stunning jewelry designs.
A Bead in Time is a must read for anyone who enjoys designing jewelry. In addition to a wealth of advice and tips for designing memorable pieces, each project encourages creativity and experimentation. Even expert beaders will be delighted by the jewelry projects, which include stringing and wirework techniques, with a bit of light bead weaving as well. It’s a great introduction for beginners, as well as a valuable resource for intermediate beaders.
Each of the 35 tutorials includes step-by-step color photographs, and a tip for finding your own inspiration within the same theme. These tidbits are also great reminders of the beauty that is all around us, from our favorite foods to familiar neighborhood settings. With Lisa’s encouragements, readers will discover a new wealth of motivation for creating.
My favorite project from A Bead in Time is “Summer Salad”, which incorporates a thrift store find into a delightful bangle. This design proves that with the thousands of bead styles available, it is possible to recreate almost any object in the universe and make it wearable.
I was also tickled by “Ribbon and Chain” which inspired me to keep an eye out for interesting jewelry materials. The very next time an object strikes me as beautiful, I will really examine it’s potential as a beading component.
“Box of Chocolates” is also an eye-popping design. Imagine using bicone crystals to recreate the familiar crinkled paper in a tray of bon-bons! The result is an instantly recognizable bracelet that is fun and wearable.
If you find yourself bumping into beader’s block, A Bead in Time is an essential resource. It’s not just a collection of projects and techniques, but a guide to creative design that will help you to keep your creative to-do list full. For daily inspiration, stop by Lisa Crone’s blog, A Bead a Day, with new projects, beading ideas, and fabulous materials to spark your imagination.
I would like to thank North Light Books and Lisa Crone for allowing me to preview A Bead in Time. Inspirational Beading has not received paid compensation for featuring products in this blog. I have shared my honest opinions and enthusiasm about this book.