Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Freeform Peyote Neckpiece: the aftermath

Part of my process when designing my freeform peyote neckpiece for the Head-to-Head Challenge was to pick out many, many different seed beads sizes and shapes in the various colors I had chosen to work with.

Following the advice of several experts, I combined similarly-colored beads in larger containers, so that (in theory) my bead selection in that color group would be truly random. Not surprisingly (since I know myself all too well) this "bead soup" approach didn't work at all for me, and I had to re-sort the beads before I could stitch. But, being basically lazy, I only sorted enough to stitch with, and only sorted by size (meaning, for example, that if I had chosen 7 different shades of 11/0 Delicas to use, I only re-sorted these into one large pile of mixed orange Delicas, not into their original 7 shades).

Now that the neckpiece is finished, I have a lot of bead sorting to do - I simply have to restore order and usability to this mess - I am just too OCD-inclined to work with unsorted beads!

If you look at the unembellished back of the necklace, you can see that I have 8 different bead soups to sort:

  • orange
  • orange-purple
  • purple
  • purple-blue
  • blue
  • blue-green
  • green
  • green-orange
I decided to start by sorting the greens - and since it has been a few months since I worked with the greens, I forgot (at first) about there being  green-orange and  green-blue soups - I dumped out the green soup, starting sorting, and the light bulb came on. So I dumped all 3 side by side, and began by just pulling all the greens out of the green-orange and green-blue soups. Then I could dump the remaining blues in the blue bucket, the remaining oranges in the orange bucket, and dig into the now-larger pile of greens!

3 bead soups containing various green seed beads

mixed green seed beads

Sorting the greens was relatively easy, albeit time-consuming. I had only chosen 2 different shades in 11/0 Delicas, one light, one dark - easy. Only one 11/0, one 11/0 triangle, one 8/0, and one 4 mm cube - not bad. The 11/0 and the light-colored 11/0 Delica were very, very similar, so I actually had to roll each of these side to side, looking for the silver lining in the Delica. But all-in-all, not too bad.

Then I moved on to the blues - 
 sorting the blue bead soup

I had many, many more colors and shapes of blue beads to choose from, and it looks like I chose most of them! For the initial round of sorting, I was easily able to isolate the 11/0 triangles, the 6/0s, the indigo-colored 11/0 Delicas, and the 8/0 Delicas. But I put 6 different blue 11/0 Delicas in the mix, and 4 11/0 rounds. I decided that the better part of valor at first was to pull out the beads I was 100% sure of, and then just make a large pile of mixed Delicas and a large pile of mixed 11/0 rounds, and once I finish this initial pass, I'll go back with my optivisor and further sort the Delicas and 11/0 rounds. 

This will be the same approach I have to take with the oranges and the purples, where I also used quite a few shades of Delicas and 11/0s.

I'll be glad when this is behind me!  

1 comment:

dreaminofbeads / SAS Jewelry Designs said...

Oh my just reading the sorting process makes my head spin. I could not do it. hope it goes quickly for you.