Entering a Beading Challenge
by Jen Kent
Jen entered the professional section for the Stitchncraft Beads Fit for a Queen Beading Challenge which ran from August 2016 to July 2017. Here she gives us her ten top tips for entering into a beading challenge or competition.
1. Choose a theme. Does your competition have a theme or a prerequisite for the design already? Specify what you would like to make. If your competition requires more than one piece it may not be a prerequisite to have them all matching but often they will complement each other if they do and this will add to the overall effect and presentation of the finished pieces.
2. Choose colours that will compliment your theme. I find colour inspiring and playing with colour in a piece can really change the effect.
3. Raid your bead stash and choose only new beads that will enhance the beads you already own. It is so easy to spend a fortune on new beads just for the next project but you may surprise yourself when you have things in your stash that would actually suit your theme perfectly! Did anyone say ‘Duracoat Champagne’? (Jen’s favourite).
4. Browse online for images that will blend with your theme and inspire you. When looking for pictures look at images of beadwork as these may contain techniques that will suit your theme and may change what you are deciding to do. I kept several pictures on hand to keep my inspiration and design ideas flowing. Do not copy these images though as this may be a breach of copyright.
5. Take yourself out of your comfort zone and try out some new techniques that you could incorporate into your bead work, you never know, it might just open up lots more creative ideas.
6. Have a rough plan of what you would like to create. You could sketch this out but if the thought of this terrifies you why not create a scrapbook of pictures that will remind you of what you want to achieve when you are finished.
7. If you are not happy with how your work is going unpick it and try a different technique. I can’t count how many times I unpicked my challenge piece!
8. Keep your work tidy. Finish off those thread ends so they are hidden and ensure that your work is neat on the reverse. It may be these little details that put your pieces above the rest.
9. Don’t leave your beadwork to the last minute. Give yourself plenty of time for your project that way if you are struggling with inspiration you can put it down and then come back to it when inspiration strikes. It will show in your work if you have become bored with your project.
10. Enjoy what you are doing. The process is so much fun and you can put your heart and soul into it. I loved what I managed to achieve in my first challenge and I am so proud of myself even if I did not win!
Below is Jen's entry for the Fit for a Queen Beading Challengs.
Akasha Queen of the Dammed - Professional Section