One big accomplishment over the past month is that I have learnt three basic bead-weaving stitches. This is something that I have wanted to learn since a long long time, but could not find anyone to teach me. Then, I chanced over a jewellery-design book and things changed. :)
I have made the large earrings using ladder and brick stitch based on the instructions on this site
I have made an even-count peyote stitch bracelet with small earrings to go with it. These are made from a very basic ladder-brick stitch combination, also used in the large earrings.
The bookmark is made from three small peyote stitch segments woven together, the instructions for which are in the book Jewelry and Beading Designs for Dummies by Heather H Dismore and Tammy Powley that I got from the British Council.
I found a lot more books on jewellery making in the library, but this book was the only one in which the three stitches (peyote, ladder and brick) were mentioned with instructions. However, after I spent quite some hopeless hours trying to make a simple even-count peyote with instructions from the book, the internet came to the rescue. These are the sites that I have referred to for brick stitch and peyote stitch
Here are the things you need to start any jewellery project:
Seen here is a reel of nylon thread (called Nymo in all western jewellery-making sites), a long-nose plier, earring hoops, hooks, a very fine needle, Fevibond to secure the knots and assorted beads. All sites mentioned them as Delica beads, but in Indian stores, no one recognized either the name Nymo or Delica. In gujarati, we call these as 'kidia' moti. The best quality that I have come across yet is in a shop called Bhavsar in old Ahmedabad. All other packets I got have a somewhat irregular size, and so, the slightly small beads tend to get stuck in the needle and you have to rework. You can find most of these materials at a shop that sells embroidery materials.
Bead-weaving in particular and jewellery-making in general needs a lot of concentration. Way too often my mind wanders and I make mistakes, have to start all over again. However, it's fun, how one small project involves you, and how making a small earring becomes your mission for a day. You sit occupied with colours and patterns, and once a design is done, the joy of creation leaves you with a silly smug.
Related post: Some necklaces that I made