Yesterday I decided to have a go at making little beaded donut shapes. Its not somthing I've done before. I had a vague idea about how to go about it so decided to try and figure it out without instructions/diagrams. I don't tend to have any difficulties following tutorials but as I want to develop my beawork I thought it would be beneficial for me to experiment myself.
The first two I made were okish but I didn't find them too easy to zip up so I took a break for lunch and posted on the OTTBS facebook page that I'd been experimenting but was now going to look up how to do it properly. I knew there was some instructions in Laura McCabe's Creating Jewelry with Swarovski. Mary and Donna in OTTBS offered some very helpful comments so, after a slight detour to make a helicopter, sock puppet, playing cars and a lovely roast dinner with my nephew and inlaws, I spent the rest of the evening having another go. It did not go amazingly well.
Here are all 5 rings I made. OTTBSians may recognise the colours. I've been using 15s and 'delicas' (not actually sure they are delicas but a note about that later).
1. This one was made by stringing 40 delicas as the first 2 rows of a peyote strip. I then added 4 more rows of 15 and 2 of delicas. I joined the short ends of the strip together like brick stitch and then zipped the delicas together. It was a little tricky to zip up so I thought mabe I neede a bigger diameter. Plus I though I may as well work tubular.
2. This one was made by stringing 50 delicas and tying into a ring and working even peyote. Then 4 rows of 15 and 2 of delicas before zipping up. Ok ish but the symmetry is of (on this and no.1) Because I have an even number of rows of delicas and 15s, the wides point of the donut falls between rows and it would look better if it was on a row.
3. Mary suggested I work from the center and then alternate from side to side. Also she and Donna gave suggestions on starting numbers. This one was made by starting in the middle with 48 15s (and therefore giving 24 'up' beads). The final donut has 5 rows of 15s and 5 rows of delicas. Its not very ring like so I decided to decrease the starting amount of 15s and go back to 8 rows in total.
4. Very unring like! This one is 3 rows of 15s and 5 rows of delicas (started in the middle of the 15s). I initally strung 32 15s.
5. Probably the best so far. This one is 5 rows of 15s and 3 rows of delicas (again, starting in the middle of the 15s). I intially strung 48 15s.
Still not particulary happy. In Laura McCabe's book she uses charlottes, 15s and delicas and works from the centre of the biggest beads and zips up the smallest. I know its easier to zip up the larger beads so I'm going to stay doing that but maybe I should be using 3 different bead sizes? I don't actually own any tiny Czech charlottes so maybe I could use 15s, delicas and 11s?
I don't know. It was a frustrating evening making me think I really shouldn't have booked onto Laura's course in June after all.
But I WILL work on it and get there. I need to experiment more and possibly dig out more books to see if there's more instructions in them. Any hints or tips you have would be most appreciated.
A note about cylinder beads: Are there rubblish quality cylinders in the same way as there are rubbish quality seedies? I assumed they were all good but the green ones I've been using are quite irregular in height. The cylinders I have that I know are definately delicas are pretty regular so I'm wondering if these no-named ones I've had in my stash for ages are actually something else. I can't remember when and wher I bought them. The blue aren't tooooo bad but I thought I got them at the same time!