French Beaded Flower,
Or, fantasy in blue

Though I'm posting it first (because I don't like the way the photo of the first one came out, and need to reshoot) this is actually the second in my series of fantasy french beaded flowers. I love the traditional style, but my goal, ever since learning about french beaded flowers, was to combine the technique with my rather idiosyncratic version of wirewrapping, and perhaps wire needlelace as well. I'm still working on the latter, but started to make steps toward the former with a series of leaves.

Fantasy wireworked beaded flower in blue. Assorted wire, glass beads. Flower measures about 5" across and is 9" long (not surprising since I used a 9" mandrel as a stem wire.) Lampwork center bead is roughly 10mm, and is in the abstract style. Spring/summer 2008.

Next was to make flower petals in this style; but I quickly discovered that was too busy even for my tastes. In the first flower, I used the plainer traditional petals as a background, or frame, for the wire-wrapped petals, so for this one, I put the fancier petals behind. I liked the ruffled collar of looped beads around a lampwork center, so I duplicated that aspect of the design.

This flower is not as finished (nor as successful, in my opinion) as the first effort, and of course I need to figure out what to do with the wires sticking out from the round petals—I had originally considered putting white or blue 15/0s and curling them, but now I'm leaning towards just curling them and having done.

But, having managed a good fantasy flower, and even a variation, I'm finally on the road I envisioned some 8 years ago, when I first attempted french beaded flowers.

photo 29sep08; file created 30sep08.