Find Beading Inspiration from Prolific Bead Weaving Artist Regina Payne
Regina Payne is a prolific bead weaving artist who has been beading since 1990. She now teaches beading through her local bead group. Regina has had a few projects published in Beadwork magazine, most recently her Royal Countess Cuff in the October/November 2017 issue. Regina’s Royal Countess Cuff is available as a kit, with a bonus pair of earrings designed by Cristie Prince.
In the Beginning
Q: How did you get started beading?
A: I got started in beading in 1990, after my 4th child was born. I needed a creative outlet, so I rented a space in a nearby craft mall. I painted Christmas scenes on sweatshirts and soon added Christmas earrings. These sold well, so I made more simple jewelry. When the beading magazines began to come out, I expanded my skills and was hooked. After 2005 or so, I had more time to bead because I was only working part-time. I focused on learning all the stitches and making projects from many beading magazines and books.
Regina’s Design Process
Q: Where do you get your design ideas?
A: My designs come about from seeing an idea in my head, often when I’m asleep, and doing a simple sketch and then experimenting. I’m good at math and I’m patient, so most of the time it comes together easily. When I like a piece, I make many samples in different colors or using different bead types, tweaking if necessary to get a good thread path and a solid piece. This drives my creativity, as does seeing the gorgeous ideas on Etsy, on Pinterest, and in publications.
I’ve improved my work in terms of color, complexity, and quality by seeing what others do and learning from what I’ve read. My favorite designers are Sherry Serafini, Melissa Grakowsky Shippee, and Laura McCabe. These designers have expanded the possibilities of what can be done with a few beads and a needle and thread — it’s magical! My life is happier because of people like them.
Q: Do you plan your designs in advance, or do you just let the creativity flow?
A: I don’t usually plan the exact design, but I have a basic mental picture and then go for it. I love the work — the process of design and the repetition.
Creativity and Color
Q: How do you get out of a creative rut?
A: I haven’t been in a creative rut yet because of all the great beads, colors, and variety of design possibilities out there. My problem is the opposite; I’m overwhelmed by so much to play with!
Q: How do you approach the use of color in your designs?
A: I just put stuff together that I like. In the past I used too much bronze in my work, so I’m trying to get better about using other colors. What grabs my attention when I see other work is the contrasts that are bolder or unexpected. I’m trying to work out of my comfort zone. But I always use metallic seed beads in my work because they make a piece look more expensive and more like fine jewelry.
Q: What’s your favorite stitch or technique, and why?
A: My favorite stitch is peyote. I can do it in my sleep. I love the rhythm and the repetition and how it’s a wonderful base for so much possibility. I also adore bead embroidery and always have a work in progress. This technique is endlessly creative. I can play for hours, just setting out components and beads. I love that!
Q: What was the inspiration for your Royal Countess Cuff project?
A: The inspiration for the Royal Countess Cuff came about as I was playing with an uneven peyote edging and seeing what could be stitched on top of it to create a delicate and lacy effect. I like how the design can easily be changed because of all of the beautiful Delica and crystal colors available. Those are my favorite beads to work with.
To see more of Regina’s work, visit her Etsy site, Night Owl Studio Jewels. And to read about my experience stitching Regina’s Royal Countess Cuff, see “Tips I Learned While Stitching Our Latest Beadwork Beading Kits.”
Managing Editor, Beadwork magazine
Find Regina’s designs in Beadwork magazine and get her Royal Countess Cuff kit in the Interweave Store, with a bonus earring kit designed by Cristie Prince!