Sunday, July 22, 2012

Gwen's bead

Sorry about the blurry image; no tripod handy. But I think you can see the structure OK. I call this one Gwen's bead, because it was inspired by the paper Gwen Fisher and Blake Mellor wrote about tiling theory and beading. It's in Gwen's blog at I have to admit I haven't finished reading the article, but I've looked at the diagrams and pictures in it. I particularly liked the hexagonal tiled figure in Fig 28 (on the left). The problem is that as I'm an active rugweaver, when I want to make complex flat patterns, I do it at my loom, and weave a rug. With the beadwork I want to work in 3 dimensions. I started out to turn the flat idea in figure 28 into a truncated octagon, as that's a shape I use alot. But when I realized how big it would get, I switched to a cuboctahedron. Seems like when you use that method in a solid figure, what you end up with is a sort of truncated cuboctahedron. Also it seemed like in the 3-dimensional figure the ratio of the 2 sorts of beads (I think Gwen has a name for them, but I'm too lazy to look it up just now) is different. My piece seems to have lots more silver beads in relation to the copper ones (I think the ratio was 96/32 or 3/1) than her flat figure had. I was also surprised at how firm it was; I was afraid it would be squishy. I'm not sure just what I'll do with the bead, but I like the lacy openness of it. Anyway it was a fun thing to work on.


  1. I'm honored. Thank you. I love your application of this weave in 3D. I agree that 3D bead weaving is more fun than flat weaves, but after so many years of beading, this paper demanded to be written! I just couldn't say no.

    1. Amazing--I've finally figured out how to comment on my own blog! Actually my favorite stuff of the work you do is the 2D stuff, like the Kepler's star and similar. What I like most is that they're quite complex, but still look clean and simple.

  2. I love it! I work with tiny seed beads in intricate patterns so much that I sometimes forget to stop and appreciate the simple beauty of geometry in beaded beads. This unique design provides the perfect lesson in this area. Thanks!