Beadwork Editors’ Beading Goals for 2020

As we ring in the New Year, it’s time to assess what new we want to bring into our creative lives. Aside from organizing our studios, we had fun thinking through new beading goals to pursue. From bead-weaving stitches that have eluded us to avenues we’ve longed to travel down, the techniques span a wide range. We’re glad to share our lists with you and we’re excited to see what comes from the goals we’ve set.

enameled filigree beads from Mastering Torch-Fired Enamel by Barbara Lewis

enameled filigree beads from Mastering Torch-Fired Enamel by Barbara Lewis

Colorful Beading Goals

By Katie Hacker, Interim managing editor, Beadwork magazine

“If you want to be happy, set a goal that commands your thoughts, liberates your energy and inspires your hopes.” —Andrew Carnegie

I go through phases with goal setting. While I definitely agree that we are much more likely to achieve something if we write it down, sometimes even the act of writing it down is intimidating. Will I have time to work toward my goal? Will I make time? But when I get excited about something? Watch out!

Ever since Barbara Lewis was my guest on Beads, Baubles & Jewels, I’ve been itching to set up an enameling area in my studio. It’s such a fun way to add color and texture to your beads, pendants, and more! Barbara makes it seem so easy to paint with fire. 2020 will be the year I make it happen.

First, I’ll get a refresher by watching her Torch-Fired Enamel Basics video download for instruction on how to get started enameling. For enameling inspiration and tips, I’ll be referring to “Enameling Next Steps: 13 Ways to Enhance Your Enamel Jewelry Designs” by Tammy Jones. Is enameling one of your goals for 2020? I’d love to hear how it’s going!

Looming While We Work

Loom woven bracelet by Julianna C. Avelar

Loom woven bracelet by Julianna C. Avelar

My other goal is to spend more time bead looming. It’s so meditative and it’s another great way to play with colors. Julianna C. Avelar has been my guest on Beads, Baubles & Jewels many times and she has created lots of inspirational bead looming projects with her Jewel Loom. I especially love bead looming projects that incorporate two-hole beads and leather cord, such as her Portuguese Inspired Tile Cuff.

For a more conventional but very colorful bead looming project, I’m intrigued by Julianna’s Jewel Loom Friendship Bracelet with Picot Stitch. Larger seeds beads make the bracelet work up quickly so you can make multiple bracelets to share with friends. I like the idea of creating this bracelet in a friend’s birthstone color–or maybe team colors for your favorite sports fan.

I hope you’ll join me in setting at least one beading goal for 2020. Remember to keep yours specific. If you want to use more color, go ahead and choose a couple of projects that will infuse new energy into your beadwork. Or, decide now to make at least one outside-the-box, colorful project from each issue of Beadwork. By the end of the year, you’ll have six amazing pieces of jewelry that really rock your world. Whatever goals we set, our creativity is going to get a jumpstart this year!


Beading Into 2020

By Meredith Steele, Technical Editor, Beadwork magazine

Meredith’s finished beaded Kaleidocycle

Meredith’s finished Kaleidocycle

Each year, I feel more and more inspired by beads and all of the wonderful patterns that Beadwork publishes, so it’s not easy for me to pick just a couple of goals for 2020. I want to complete more projects, become more organized, and step up my gift-giving game by starting earlier on bigger projects so I can actually finish them on time. But my #1 goal for 2020 is to spend more time stitching with just seed beads.

I have been swept away by Contemporary Geometric Beadwork – the phenomenon in the beading world that uses seed beads (mostly cylinder beads) with peyote and herringbone stitch to form intriguing geometric shapes, little beaded machines, and jewelry that goes beyond “just pretty” and dives into art that focuses on form and color.

Learn How to Brick Stitch an Easy Beaded Butterfly

Noble Leafwing Butterfly

I love creating “things that are not jewelry” – and find that my friends and family appreciate those items more, as well. Beaded butterflies have been very popular lately, and the last time I tried my hand at creating one, it was an utter failure. Now that I have more experience, I think I will give some of the butterflies in the Brick-stitch Beaded Butterflies eBook a shot.


Crocheting Along

By Tammy Honaman, Editor, Beadwork magazine

Mr. Wilson by Karen Ovington, Dec/Jan 2020 Beadwork magazine.

Mr. Wilson by Karen Ovington, Dec/Jan 2020 Beadwork magazine.

I have attempted bead crochet a few times. I’ve sat with experts who have exercised great patience. I have read books and patterns, all with the hope of really “getting it.” It’s just one of those things where I feel all thumbs. Everyone tells me, once you get past the first few rows it just clicks. I keep starting over when I lose my place, so this is likely part of my problem! BUT—I want to get it and would rather get it from the beginning than have a few rows that are a jumbled mess then beads that line up perfectly. AND, I would LOVE to make Karen Ovington’s Mr. Wilson necklace—oh, how I love this necklace and the Mr. Wilson bead!

I will make the time and I will get this stitch—this is a goal for 2020! I will likely take another workshop at Bead Fest, too, just to be sure! Candice Sexton, I sure hope you’ll be back with us for 2020!


Beadweaving hinges, baste stitching, beadweaving, Nichole Starman, two hole bead system, CzechMates, Hinge & Baste Stitch with Nichole Starman beading goals

Beadweaving hinges, baste stitching, beadweaving, Nichole Starman, two hole bead system, CzechMates, Hinge & Baste Stitch with Nichole Starman

I’m a bit challenged when it comes to building dimensional designs. Designs like Nichole Starman’s bangles from Hinges & Baste Stitching video. I’m going to watch this video again and this time, bead along!

Nichole makes it all look so easy. From “Beadweaving Hinges, Basting Stitches, and More From Nichole Starman,” “These techniques not only give greater flexibility, they allow us to create designs with layers. This is otherwise challenging or nearly impossible to do without these advancements. One take away that left a great visual in my mind – use the QuadraTile bead as the base plate, as you would when constructing a building. And use the QuadraLentil the same way but for a softer edge.” There are so many pieces of gold in Nichole’s whole video series—if you’re looking to ramp up your beading game and create serious dimension, be sure to watch along with me!


Ideas to spur your New Year’s Beading Goals:

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