Hello again my friends! I hope you all had a marvelous holiday season (whatever it is that you celebrate!) and that you are enjoying the new year. Today I wanted to share with you a new tool that has helped with French Beading.
These frames were made by my father from a design by a French Beaded Flower artist and teacher named Sheila Herson, who gave a set to one of her students - Barbara Keute. It was from Barbara that I learned of these very useful tools.
These types of things aren't sold anywhere, since they are a custom design. So, I asked my father to make a set for me. I asked him to make mine out of yard sticks so I could use the frame to measure out Basic Rows or wire easily. There are two hooks on each frame, one on the "top" and one on the "side". You can use either one depending on the length and size of the piece you are making. These frames are meant to be leaned against a table to hold them upright so you can use the hooks to hold your top and bottom loops while you measure out rows and wrap. It helps keep your top and bottom wires very straight and acts as a third hand. They are especially helpful for making large or long petals and leaves. However, I don't work at a table. I actually sit on the floor most of the time, sometimes on the couch, so I've got nothing to lean it against.
An idea was triggered by a memory of my mother using an embroidery stand to hold her cross-stitching. So, I asked my father to design and build a stand for me to go with the frames from pictures of ideas that I sent him. I gave him measurements and angles and all that, and he built me this really awesome stand.
There is a flat piece on the bottom, which goes under my legs. A clamp at the top to attach my frame (I can switch them out easily). It's even height adjustable, and I can adjust the angle of the frame. Now, one thing that was not intended was that it can actually be used standing on the floor while I sit on my couch. This was something I accidentally discovered while I was taking pictures of it this morning. I had to extend the height fully, then attach my frame in upside down and rotate the clamp hinge all the way up. Your feet can sit right on the base. It works for me because I'm short (5'2" ish). If I were taller I'd have to lean down too much. Cool huh?
Anyways, I'm sharing this to hopefully spark some ideas in ways to make beading easier. I've posted pictures of the stand elsewhere, and I've already had a bunch of messages about purchasing one. I don't believe my daddy intends to make more (at this point). But perhaps you could find a way to rig your own? The frames would be fairly simple to make, and if you work at a table that's all you'd need. You don't have to use yard sticks. I've seen others use picture frames. I bet you could use an actual embroidery stand and frames too.
I am open to custom orders now! Currently I have an order for a yellow rose, which is nearly complete. I am also working on a Magnolia project (still) and a pattern/tutorial collaboration with another Beaded Flower designer and friend. I will share more info on that once we have some teasers to show. ;)
Hello everyone! I am Lauren Harpster, the designer behind Lauren's Creations. I am a 28 year old wife, and a mother to three adorable little kids. I've been making French Beaded Flowers for six years now, and teaching French Beading through my website for about four years. I hope you'll join me on my blog so you, too, can Learn the Art of French Beading.
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