Sunday, June 3, 2012

Review of Dimensional Bead Embroidery

I am sure you have heard the phrase, "you can't teach an old dog new tricks".  Well, here I am to dispute that.  I have been doing bead embroidery for a very long time and thought there couldn't be anything new I haven't already seen or figured out myself.  As with everything in our large surprising world, this is totally untrue.  There is always something to mystify and enlighten if we look long enough with open eyes.  And this bead crazy woman learned more than just one new trick concerning bead embroidery...oh yes, her eyes were opened very very wide while reviewing Jamie Cloud Eakin's new book Dimensional Bead Embroidery:A Reference Guide to Techniques.  I have other titles of Jamie's book in my permanent library that I will refer to to reinforce some idea I have or to just enjoy following the patterns and designs.  But this book actually did knock my socks off.  The very front and back of the book's cover invited me in with lovely colors and fascinating designs. 

In Jamie's introduction she states that she's going to "show how to use old stitches in new ways and add some new techniques to push the boundaries and create a new dimension in bead embroidery".  She also states that "my favorite thing about bead embroidery is not only the capacity for variety but also the simplicity".  I have to agree with her on the later and as she again states "even if you can barely sew on a button, you can do this".  I have had students in my classes that don't even know how to thread a needle, but they are able with a few simple stitches to make something beautiful and lasting.  Jamie's book goes over the basic techniques for the very beginner, but then she dives in deep with many illustrations, pictures, and word explanations that make the intermediate to advance bead embroiderer take note and smile with pleasure. 

Caging cabochons

In her book she has so many examples of alternative ways to not only cage a cabochon, but experiment with fascinating ways to edge the completed piece of art.  She also shares techniques on taking different complete components and pieces them together into an intricate project such as "Celebrate Spring" Necklace.  For each project, she has a detailed list of materials you need along with the stitches used for completion.  She also give information on how to design personal projects.

Inventive edging
And the final gallery pages are enough to make any admirer of bead embroidery to just gasp.  I was so delighted to see pieces and names of people I have met on the Internet during my years exploring and learning to master this great technique.  I am even proud to say that I own several pieces by one the the invited guest in Jamie's gallery.  I've know Arline Lewis for a long time, and we actually got to met years ago in Tahoe while attending a class with Sherry Serafini.

Beautiful project

I got to met Jamie last year while in Milwaukee. She had the printer's proof of this book.  Instantly I could tell that it was going to be a absolutely lovely book filled with so many ideas and techniques for the very beginner to the master.  Get this book to add to your library no matter where you are in your journey to master bead embroidery.  I guarantee it will be used over and over again for instruction and ideas.

 I was so thrilled with this book that I made up a new necklace with some of the ideas I got.  This is called "Desert Find".  I used an Ammonite I had purchased from Land of Odds and Utah Jasper from Byzantium.  Though the necklace looks as if two pieces are at different angles from the others, it fits perfect around my neck without any discomfort and because of the construction it does not twist and could be worn for hours with the wearer forgetting it is on.  This happened to me when I was out to eat and the waitress admired it.  I had to reach up to feel it as I had forgotten I left it on.  It is one of those pieces that I just won't be able to part with.

Disclosure...As a reviewer of  products from Lark Books, I receive the book above free of charge. I have been asked to review these products and give my honest opinion of the products...positive or negative. I am not being compensated by Lark Books for my endorsement as it pertains to the products received and reviewed.

1 comment:

Dale said...

I love reading your reviews Dot. Another book added to my must have list! Dale