A different kind of Blue

It’s Forget me Not harvest time! Some years I miss the harvest because I’m travelling. It’s an extra bonus of lockdown to be here, just as the hedges around my house are full of these cheerfully blue flowers. Because they are a crucial part of my little’ Beaders Blend’ thread conditioner.

I developed it after experimenting with lots of different thread conditioners and finding them not quite right for my beadwork. There is a big debate about whether to condition thread or not. Some threads come pre-waxed, or coated, but for those that don’t, or if you need a helping hand… the basic rule of thumb is, Silica based conditioners like Thread Heaven, help synthetic thread to become more slippery. Wax based conditioners do the opposite. So, if you have thread tension issues, one or other type can be a useful addition to your tools.

Having taught a lot of beaders and peeked into many work boxes, I’ve seen everything from a white candle stub, fancy crystalline wax in pots, to a gnarly lump of bees wax being used. I like to condition my thread when I’m working on complex structural beading, and developed the Beaders Blend to be a light touch helper.

It took lots of trial and error with various recipes until I found the one that worked best. It’s a mix of pure bees wax, straight from the honey makers, combined with two different white waxes, in (of course) secret proportions. The ingredients melt together into an easy to apply wax that gives a very light application, which is just what I needed for my style of beading.

The process starts with the Forget Me Not harvest, flowers are pressed in an old fashioned flower press until they are completely dry.

 

 

 

 

 

Then the cooking the mix day starts and kitchen slowly fills with the gorgeous scent of warming beeswax. When the blend is ready I pour it into tiny silver foil cups. The finishing touch, once the mixture has cooled, is to add a tiny blob of more mix (harder than it looks and each one a little different!) and decorate it with a pressed flower.

One Beader’s Blend will last you a long time, and you can find them in my shop here.