Thursday, April 3, 2008

About to get crazy

Well life is about to explode. We are starting into our busy season. Did "Teddy Bear Brunch" last month to bebefit the Salisbury Zoo. Drummed, danced, painted faces ... Earth Day at the zoo is April 19th. Along with Frybread, Beads and arrowheads we are also helping them officially open the red wolf and indiginous animals exibit. We have a Craft show in OC, the Dogwood feastival, and in July "the feast of the east" drum festival in WV. Can't wait to get back on the trail and see some old friends.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

New in works

Wow - May not look like much, but this thing is killing me! Decreasing peyote through the body and then gotta add 8" of brick for the straps. Well on the way, but it is slow going.
Work is making me crazy ... How can you do 5 things - all RIGHT NOW - with no help??? Well I guess that is the life of retail, Guess after 18 years I should be used to it by now.
Doesn't leave much time for beading and family, then blogging, and forums, and group posts, and promoting ... something gotta give. Ya do what you can and try and keep family first!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Early Native American Beadwork and Materials

The manufacture of jewelry as adornment goes back to the earliest discovered cultures. Even Neanderthal and Cro-magnum man used bits of shell, bone, and stone to decorate themselves. The early Native Americans were no exception, and the tradition and methods used have evolved into some of the beadweaving techniques that we use today.
What few people in this “Wal-mart” world can understand is that pre contact, everything that the Native people used had to be made by hand, with tools that they manufactured, out of materials that they could find in nature. For a person or group to be able to take the time to make something as frivolous as beads, with no daily purpose, meant that that village or individual was well off by Native standards. Typically time was spent on gathering food, hunting, raising crops, making baskets or pots for use in the home etc... Only once the necessities were done could items like jewelry and decorative items be made. This is one reason why the story about “Buying Manhattan” for $24 worth of beads persists. Can you imagine being presented with the kind of wealth that several bags of beads, that would have taken you months, if not years, to make would have represented.
Typical materials used for pre-contact beads were teeth, bone, antler, gem stone, catlanite, and shell – both tortoise and clam. Typically beads were strung, or stitched on to leather clothing rather than being woven. One main exception to this is the Wampum that was made from clam and oyster shells. The deep purple and white beads were highly values and frequently used for trade. Wampum belts, in particular, were woven using a manual technique without loom or shuttle, or even a needle for that matter. These belts were frequently used to commemorate events, seal treaties, etc... Beads were added by hand, passing the sinew or plant fiber through the bead holes one at a time. A great site for information about the early native processes is Native Tech and their beadwork index. These folks have done a great job in documenting early Indian life, particularly in the Northeastern states, and I highly recommend them as a source of additional information.
Between the years of 1800-1900 is when the “Native beadwork” that we have come to know really came into its own. The introduction of glass trade beads, as well as European techniques, turned native beadwork into a commodity. The introduction of commercial threads and strings as well as more advanced looms and metal needles made Loom work as well as peyote stitch easier, and even while the Native American was being removed from their culture, the native influence in fashion and jewelry became quite the fad. Even now every girl scout is taught the basics of beadwork, loom kits are sold in every 5 and 10 in the country, and we have a street team of Beadweavers on Etsy, to showcase this ancient art.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Good Trade

Well the art of Barter is still alive. I have been looking at this piece of software that I found online (Which shall remain nameless to protect the developer involved) and sent an email to the company telling them how much I liked the trial version and that I wish I could afford to buy the licence. Reply came back, do you trade, because I love your work. After a few emails back and forth the amulet bag above was accepted. GOOD TRADE as we say!!!

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Taking a weekend for me!

Well the kid is at Grammy and Pop Pops and hubby and I have some time to ourselves. So it is gonna be movies, coffee, beading and video games this weekend. Still trying to figure out how to get the views up over on etsy and get some native interest in the jewelry but I guess it will come. Roy's arrowheads are getting alot of attention, esp. the new choker one. Can't wait till the season starts and we can hit the road. Also working on getting everything together by end of Feb for the Arts Alive entry. Only thing that worries me is enough product and the display photo requirement. I will find a way to come up with the entry fee.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Regalia baby !!!!

OK, both Roy and I have finished up the latest pieces. An absolutely gorgeous choker from him, in Picture Jasper and sterling. It is the first in the "Silver spoons" line. And I finished the black and white from Heck! Perfect for regalia or just a show off. I wore it out on Sat and got some fantastic comments. Little one got her glasses, still trying to get her used to wearing them , but they look great. More later when I get time ... Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

All in the works

I never can stick to one piece at a time, get bored too quickly and I find that being able to gravitate between projects gives a much needed break without losing time and creativity.

Black and white is an update on the progress from previous posts. each connecting strand in this piece has 110 beads at 20 strands each side - wow 2200 beads in each connection, add that to the over 3000 in the body plus all the fringe and I must be nuts. still have to connect up the back - but getting closer.

Gold and black is my own design - top develops into a split V following the same pattern. Undecided on strap finish for this one - may brick a choker style strap or string. Fringe or no???? I do love fringe.

Owl pattern is from silverhill designs Been working this one on and off for almost 6 months.

All designs are copyrighted by their original designer and used with permission

We'll see which finishes first. Please let me know what you think. Thanks