5 Things to Love About Quick and Easy Projects (besides the fact that they're quick and easy!)

In my book, there's nothing more satisfying than completing a beadwoven project in 3 hours or less. In fact, I like to play a little "race the clock" game with myself–Can I finish this bracelet before the movie ends? Can I make a second earring before the meeting is over? Can I finish this necklace before we get to Grandma's house (don't worry, I don't bead and drive, my husband is the family chauffeur)?

In case a project being "quick" and "easy" isn't enough reason to give it a try, here are 5 more reasons, along with some of my favorite designs featured in our latest special issue, Quick + Easy Beadwork (Winter 2014-2015):

1) Quick projects give me confidence to play around with color because I know I won't lose a day or weekend of beading time if I end up disliking the beads I chose. Dig through your stash and try something new. Doesn't the Summer Days Bracelet by Elaine Teevens look great in both peach and purple?
2) Fast projects make perfect gifts. Just yesterday a meeting ran long and I was able to whip up an extra pair of these earrings for a co-worker. These are the Blue Jean Queen Earrings by Barbara Falkowitz.
3) Because easy projects usually call for only a few materials, they end up being very affordable to make. Shae Wilhite's Lavender Weave Bracelet only requires 4 things, all of which I already have at home: seed beads, two-hole shaped seed beads, thread, and a clasp!
4) Most designs labeled quick and easy have repeated techniques. Take Jean Campbell's Maisy Daisy Necklace for example. Make just one strand for a faster necklace, stitch a short section for a bracelet, or use the beaded spacers on a strand of leather. Take the elements you like best, then turn them into a design that's unique to you.
5) Michelle Mach's Gold Rush Cuff reminds me that a little bit of beadwork goes a long way. Here a simple strip of flat peyote stitch dresses up a purchased leather cuff, and her unique lacing technique is very hip.

As I write to you today, our physical copies of Quick + Easy Beadwork Winter 2014-2015 are almost completely sold out, but the digital issue will always be available. Get your copy here.

If you're a designer and have projects to share in our next issue of Quick + Easy, we are accepting emailed submissions NOW through March 24, 2015. E-mail a high-quality photograph to beadworksubmissions@interweave.com with "QUICK + EASY SUBMISSION" in the subject line. Include your name, contact information, and brief description of the project, including stitches used. Keep in mind that we do not accept projects that have been previously published in books and magazines or on websites (even on Facebook and Etsy). See our complete submission guidelines here.

Tell us what your ideal quick-to-stitch project looks like.

Have fun!
Melinda Barta
Editor, Beadwork magazine

P.S. We've received so much great feedback about this special issue that Beadwork will now feature a regular Quick + Easy column showcasing more great projects like these. Stay tuned for the debut of this column in our February/March 2015 issue.




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