So far as I can recall, I made two pieces of macrame in my childhood, both with the relatively fine cotton string made for crocheting doileys, one in brown, now lost, and other, featuring a turkey neckbone focal, in orange that is barely 9” long—even in the era of big textile wall-hangings I preferred to work on a smaller scale, and despite its age, currently hangs in the office where I'm typing this post—I'll have to photograph it & make a page some day.
But the point is that though I haven't made a great many pieces incorporating beads and threads, I like the concept, and have intermittently attempted ways to combine the two so when the opportunity came up to take a mini-workshop using macrame with lampwork beads I...failed to sign up for it. Fortunately for me, Kathleen Robinson had extra kits, so I was able to get in the class anyway.
The ultimate selling point was her knotting board. I loved Kathleen's cosy shop, crammed with cabinets and display cases, all painted, like the walls, in a lively purple and green combination evocative of gardens not unlike the painting I've done on my own studio walls. Well, she said, she didn't want to work on a dingy-colored greyish board (like the one I did my tapestry needle-weaving on, ferex), so she decided to make it pretty as well as functional, adding green and pink ribbon and silk flowers along with the xeroxed paper rule; and metal tags with inspirational messages along with brightly colored push pins, all neatly covered with fabric.
Macrame board. Doubled foamcore, fabric, felt, paper, pushpins, silk flowers. 2008, Kathleen Robinson, with additional decors by yours truly.
Just as with the giftwrapping, once exposed to the idea, I immediately resolved to take it further, and thus added more flowers, and colored the tips of them with archival markers to make them more interesting. I'm not certain how Kathleen attached hers, but I suspect she used hot glue; that's what I did. I clipped plastic bead necklaces for some centers, and twisted wire-edged ribbon for some others. Of course, I only actually got around to doing this project when I wanted to complete this post...
(1) So far, not. But at least it can hang out publicly in my newly cleaned studio as a piece of folk art in and of itself. File mostly created 13mar08, with slight changes (mostly the addition of this para and the intro) 31mar08.
Unless otherwise noted, text, image and objects depicted therein copyright 1996--present sylvus tarn.Sylvus Tarn