The new normal

After a wonderful 10 days in California, and a rush back to prepare and deliver our Elemental Beading March Retreat just a few days later (also wonderful fun), the whole Covid19 lock down took me a while to get a handle on.

I am in awe of my beading colleagues who have already started delivering on line tutorials and live events. Bravo you, but if like me, you need a little longer to process things, my favourite business advice guru Jennifer Lee has the best advice ever… “It’s okay if you feel stuck, uninspired or overwhelmed. It’s okay if you don’t have the energy or capacity to create something new, lead a free call, or write inspirational posts like everyone else seems to be doing. It’s okay to feel ALL the feels”.

Feeling all the feels is good, resting up after a hectic, time zone crossing schedule is good. But suddenly finding a huge expanse of creative time stretching ahead of me, absolute heaven. You’d think I’d rush to the beads, but actually, with so many project ideas in various stages, it was time to get organised. Out came my darling Featherweight sewing machine, born in 1933 its history is a comforting reminder of the many upheavals it has calmly stitched through over the years. Inspired by my friend Marcia and an easy to follow tutorial by Erica Arndt, I decided to make some project bags. Fat quarters and ribbons bought for their colours on shopping trips with friends, added another layer of comfort.

I adjusted the size, mine measure 11″ x 8″ (28 x 20cm) and added ribbon above the zipper, because more colour is a happy thing. I got a bit pernickety and hand stitched the binding at the back mostly because my machine sewing skills were not up to the task of keeping neat lines, those of you who sew will totally get this. I made them this size so that they would fit neatly into the top of my adorable mint green trolly. But there was definitely a little something missing.
My dear friend Sabine Lippert came to the rescue with a live facebook lesson in making little beaded beads. It’s so lovely to just have time to take an aside and make something beady just for the pleasure of it, instead of guilt tripping over upcoming deadlines. I picked out beads to go with the fabric colours. Then spent a very happy few hours making the beads, putting them on to wires and adding accent beads and little lobster clasps, and Voila! the cutest zipper pulls ever.







The little zipper pullers gave me another idea for the yarn hobbies, knitting and crochet. They make the prettiest stitch markers! All you need is a beaded bead, there are lots of patterns out there to suit the bead stash you have to hand. A couple of accent beads (I used Swarovski 6mm briolette cushion beads in Pacific opal and Crysolite opal), a 5cm head pin, a 10mm Lobster clasp, some round nose pliers and a little bit of patience to make the wrapped loop.
Picking up familiar hobbies, immersing in gorgeous colours, beading for pleasure, each one a little step to finding balance and inner peace.