Bead Table Wednesday: Downton Abbey-Inspired Beading

So, I have to admit it: I can't get enough of Downton Abbey. I'd seen a couple of blurbs about it, so when it popped up on my Netflix recommendations, I thought, why not?

I was hooked after watching the first episode. Set at the turn of the last century in an English country manor, I found myself sucked in to the plot and the characters. The clothing! The jewelry! The architecture! Truthfully, when the scene is a dinner party, I'm not so much paying attention to the story line and the dialogue as I am to the clothing and the jewelry worn by those glamorous ladies of the 1910s.

This week, to indulge my obsession a bit more, I decided to dig through my bead stash and create one of those magnificent festoon necklaces so popular at the turn of the last century! I purchased these kyanite drops from Lima Beads last fall with a very different idea in mind, but after looking through my sketchbook at a couple of the pieces I drew after watching Downton Abbey, I decided that they would be just the thing for a dazzling piece of antique-inspired jewelry.

Blue is not a color that I use very often in my beading, so this will be a little bit of a challenge for me. I just happened to have a few tubes of seed beads in various shades of blue that will look perfect with these gemstone drops, and a few Swarovski bicones or pearls thrown in for good measure will add the appropriate amount of bling. Instead of using bright gold metallic seed beads, I opted instead to use a shade of bright bronze seed beads from Whimbeads.The beadweaving itself will probably be a combination of right-angle weave and herringbone stitches to give the necklace the right drape when worn.

As for actually wearing this necklace when it's finished? I don't know. Dinner at my house isn't exactly what it is at Downton Abbey, but you never know.

What's on your Bead Table this Wednesday?

Bead Happy,


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