My earliest “wire wrapping” mostly involved twisting those cut-off ends from head pins into little spirals, coils and the like, which I then attached, like the fuzzy coat of a caterpiller to more wire. This made a rather lumpish, but interestingly textured object that is technically a bead.
After a while I actually started to use good wire to make sort of a cage around large, ugly beads, which then served as an armature for more elaborate decorations. I combined a freeform wire-wrapping (though it was a couple of years before I realized this was what I was doing) with beads on wire and some needlelace techniques.
Thus the wire-woven beaded bead was born. This is a great technique for jazzing up boring beads and using badly drilled chips, which obligingly lay in interesting ways when tightly strung on wire.
Unfortunately, they were time consuming and never really sold all that well, and about the time I really starting making some beautiful things with them, like the Peggy piece (see below) I'd gotten sucked into making glass beads, which accounted for a lot of my energy for the next 10 years or so. But lately, I've been using beads to make art, as opposed to merely making them, and my interest in this particular craft was awakened by the serendipitous acquisition by a friend's husband of thousands—indeed likely thousands and thousands—of feet of wire. Now what could I make with that...?
Why, french beaded flowers, of course. The traditional form was very portable, and straightfoward enough that I could chat and work easily at the same time. This is basically my third go-round trying to teach myself this admittedly easy technique, but simple as it is, some basics do still need to be mastered (or mistressed) and finally, I've managed that. Now with this foundation I've finally started going somewhere.
It remains to be seen whether third time's the charm, of the effort will flare, flower briefly and sink back into the abandoned projects category, like spring bulbs that pop up briefly before the trees leaf out, only to disappear for most of the growing season.
But though their season may be short, spring bulbs are still glorious.
I'm not certain when I made this bracelet: I could very well have done it after I started lampworking, sometime in 1996. Or before. I'm guessing it's somewhere between 5 and 15 years old, but I don't really know, honestly. I was inspired by a couple of pieces, one, a pin that I purchased that...
First wirewrapped/french-beaded leaf incorporating fine red wire . Includes images of 4 other green leaves. 21sep2015
I made an index page for french-beaded flower pages on 8apr2008...finally got around to posting it some 6 years later... 24apr2014
Unless otherwise noted, text, image and objects depicted therein copyright 1996--present sylvus tarn.Sylvus Tarn