Bead Crochet: It's a Well Done Experience
From Jennifer: Bead crochet was, without a doubt, one of the most difficult beading techniques that I ever learned. But once I mastered it, bead crochet quickly became a source of inspiration and a great way to give my beady brain a well-deserved break between bead-weaving projects. Today, I'm thrilled to introduce to you the mother-daughter team of Bert and Dana Freed, who have turned their passion for bead crochet into a successful business!
We are both lifelong knitters, crocheters, and needlepointers. These passions for crafting were passed down through our family from mother to daughter, but our experience with beading was different; we began bead-weaving with seed beads in 1999, and found that we really enjoyed learning peyote Stitch, right-angle weave, and other beading stitches. When we learned bead crochet several years later, we knew we had both found our true passion, and together, we pushed the limits of what could be done with bead crochet.
The technique is the perfect hybrid of all our beading interests, incorporating beads, fiber, and a crochet hook to create a product that is three-dimensional and flexible. Unlike other beading techniques and beading projects, bead crochet is also portable: once you have strung your beads, you can take your bead crochet project anywhere without fear of losing beads. Whether it's a short subway ride or a long trip on an airplane, we are never on the move without a craft in hand.
Once we learned the basics of bead crochet, we were starving for more. Unfortunately, it seems the technique has a bit of a reputation for being difficult — we cannot tell you how often we have heard: "Oh, I tried to learn that but couldn't!" We found that there was less information about bead crochet available than we had hoped when we started learning bead crochet, but this turned into something good: it forced us to get creative, challenge ourselves, and see what we could discover on our own. While we were inspired by other bead crochet artists and admired their knowledge and expertise, it was important to us to use bead crochet in a different way, one that echoed our own voices and aesthetic. We are crazy for color, and the endless combinations of beads and thread really keep us on our toes.
We are as passionate about sharing what we know as we are about the technique itself. It is our hope that, through teaching and our book, Bead Crochet Jewelry, we will help all those who want to learn and master the technique of bead crochet!
Are you brave enough to try something new with your bead crochet projects? Check out The Beaded Edge 2. You'll find eighteen bead crochet patterns that can be used as edgings for accessories, clothing, and even as beautiful, delicate bead crochet jewelry. If you haven't grabbed your copy yet, take advantage of the big savings during the Interweave Spring Clearance Event and save 70% on your copy of The Beaded Edge 2.
Have you mastered bead crochet yet? What tips and advice do you have for someone who struggles with this fabulous and versatile beading technique? Leave a comment here on the Beading Daily blog and share your expertise with us!
Bert Rachel Freed and Dana Elizabeth Freed are the mother-daughter team of Well Done Experience. They sell their finished bead crochet jewelry at galleries both in New York City and overseas. You can find out more about them, their work, and their products at Chicken and Egg Designs (finished high-end jewelry) and Well Done Experience.