Welcome to the Wednesday Workshop series! On weeks when I don't have a project of my own to celebrate/tear to pieces, I post images of work by others, talking about how they use particular elements of design. The complete series can be found in chronological order here. Working with color eventually means working with pattern -- but the progression from following a set of instructions to creating one's own patterns can be a daunting move. How does one go from following Lisa Kan's clear and easy instructions for Russian spiral in her book Bead Romantique, to creating something like Suzanne Golden's Cellini spirals? It feels like a Last Crusade-style leap of faith.
Like Indiana Jones, the best way across is just to go for it. We'll start with the first step: taking a basic pattern element, and changing it slightly.
This week's example comes from Koala Handmade Jewelry, and it is singularly lovely:
The original pattern is bead crochet, but could pretty clearly be applied to peyote stitch or tubular herringbone or what else have you.
Notice how one stripe of beads alternates between gold and turquoise -- the result is like a half-stripe, or a lighter stripe, and it's much more sophisticated and subtle than a second solid stripe would have been. It's a small, simple change that results in a striking effect; a bit of Rococo richness without sacrificing clarity or form.
Try this on: