Monday, August 29, 2011

Looky! I made a (geeky) PRETTY!!

A few weeks ago, I got bitten by a crafting bug. I was itching to make something. Something geeky and pretty that I could wear. And now I've actually done it.

When I was eleven, I learned how to weave beads. First, I made a small sample for a school project. I then wove myself a Christmas-themed choker (Christmas trees, presents, candles, and a star), which I was quite proud of at the time but now seems a bit rudimentary. After that, I made grand plans for a small wall decoration featuring swimming sea otters, bought the beads required for my pattern, then got distracted with other things before it was ever made. A shame, really.

Anyway, partly inspired by seeing so many cool geeky things on Etsy, I decided I wanted to start weaving beads again. I plotted out a few fun designs in an Excel spreadsheet (there must be better software for this purpose, but it worked well enough). I went to a couple bead stores in Honolulu, spent at least half an hour in each one looking at their seed bead offerings, then went home and bought a bunch of seed beads online. As I eagerly waited for the beads to arrive in the mail, I constructed a makeshift beading loom out of boxes from Costco (beefsteak tomatoes and Häagen-Dazs ice cream bars). The beads arrived over the course of last week. And so, this past weekend I made my first (and hopefully not last) geeky woven bracelet:



It's the Mass Effect N7 emblem that appears on Commander Shepard's armor (the N designates special forces, while the 7 indicates the highest level of proficiency), modeled here with my matching Asari tee.



I made it using glass TOHO size 15 seed beads, with the colors opaque jet (the black background), silver-lined crystal, and silver-lined ruby.



When I made the choker in middle school, I was using the larger size 11 beads, and they were all opaque. The smaller beads give a finer, more delicate design (the image doesn't look as coarse as with size 11), and the design can be more complicated without the bracelet becoming too large. The transparent silver-lined beads pop out and add a bit of sparkle and shine. It came out better than I had expected. Yeah, I'm really quite pleased with myself.

So what else am I planning on making? Given the rectangular nature of the medium, excessively round images don't work very well, and things that look good short and squat fit better on a reasonably thin bracelet (though if I go for a wider cuff look, I could make a taller image). R2-D2 and Yoda are thus high on my list, and maybe the Companion Cube. Bead weaving is particularly well suited for 8-bit images, but I haven't really been inspired by anything yet. Any suggestions?

16 comments:

Out of Sync said...

Ha! That looks awesome!

I think the word 'PORTAL' with the Companion Cube on either side would look pretty cool.

Eleni said...

That's a good idea. I was trying to think what else I could do from Portal. A portal itself would be awkward (because of the roundness issue). A slice of cake?

Mariel Sarah said...

LOVE IT! For something 8-bit, how about Space Invaders aliens?!

Eleni said...

Thanks :) That's a cute idea! Definitely doable. Haven't seen that game in ages...

wolfman said...

where do i buy one?? haha. oh by the way i changed my format for leaving comments, no verification required

Eleni said...

If I come up with more designs and get better at it, I might try an Etsy store... But I'll have to think what I could make that's not jewelry, for the guys, haha.

Cool, thanks. I hope it doesn't make you get a lot of spam.

wolfman said...

yeah well its better to get spam and comments than none at all, my sis was complaining about the format too, ive got no idea how else to fix it

C said...

That is very cool. Now I'm going to have to learn how to do this... oh my.

Eleni said...

It takes a little time to get started, but it's not too hard :)

LadySnip3r AM said...

That is SO cool!

Eleni said...

Thanks!

Vanessita said...

I dig it, so much!!! <3<3<3
Wish I could do one for myself too! :P
Maybe you could try some green and red Mario mushrooms next time... but the N7 is the best!

Eleni said...

Thanks! Mario mushrooms are a great idea. I haven't really played Mario games much, actually, but other people might appreciate it!

Anonymous said...

how about posting instructions on how to make a sonic the hedgehog bracelet

GurlNxtDoor said...

Very cool. I've been working on knitting a LBP sackboy forever. i really need to finish that...

Eleni said...

Thanks! I need to learn how to knit. My mom bought me knitting needles when I was maybe 10 or 11, and I knit (badly) about a 2x8 inch rectangle. That's it. I was never good at taking lessons from my mom. Always got too impatient. Alas.