I find inspiration in the most unusual places. This doorway in a village near to where I live, leads to steps up to a garden high above the road. But in my imagination it’s like the beginning of a magical story. The gardener in me itches to clear the weeds and discover the secret pathways, and maybe unearth some treasures of a bygone era.
The Ivy tendrils gave me the beginnings of a lovely idea for beading. I use Albion stitch as the easiest way to ‘draw’ with beads, so I began by doodling some beady ivy leaves with my needle and thread. There are lots of different kinds of Ivy, each with their own leaf shape, for this design I used this variegated version from my garden as the basic shape.
Any magical story just wouldn’t be complete without a generous sprinkling of fairy dust; translated into beading, this means crystals! Bezelled Rivoli, a scattering of tiny crystals and for extra detail, divinely shaped briolette beads.
The design is called Constance because Ivy is traditionally worn or carried by brides to bring fertility and fidelity to the marriage. It is a symbol of friendship and so Constance is a name that derives from the Latin meaning steadfastness.
This was a fun class to teach, I saw so many colourful variations, here is one by the lovely Catherine Chinoy, using matt metallics in a deliciously wintery mix.
Constance is available as a kit in three colour variations