Thursday, December 31, 2009

Hi Everyone, Happy New Year

Hello everyone.

I'm looking forward to starting the 2010 Bead Journal project with all of you. I see some familiar names from the Crazy Quilt International Yahoo Group - which is how I learned about this project.

Best Wishes for a Happy and Healthy 2010 to all,


interleaving paper

On the MGP3 someone asked about backing... I had never heard of interleaving paper until I took a class from Robin in November. It is the greatest stuff EVER... She sells it at her website.

It is light, firm and flexible and keep your beading flat. When finished it is like an old dollar bill. ...strong and flexible.. Must have a very high fiber content because it feels almost like cloth when the piece is finished... Until then I had used felt for bead embroidery and it is OK but does have a tendency to stretch...

BJP 2010

As I start this journey with you to create the amazing each month, I am honored at being a part of the group of artists that I will be joining. If the last few years of beadwork that has been completed is any example of the possibilities, imagine what comes next for each of us.

This is my first year with the BJP and I am not sure that I would have joined without the influence of Robin and an amazing group of women that I had taken some classes with this last fall.

I want to wish all a Happy and Healthy New Year.


Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Returning Member

Hello everyone!

Only a few more days till the new year. I am on vacation and doing my annual reflection and goal setting. What a great opportunity to look through my project from last year and think about what to do next. If you would like to see some of my pieces and reflections check out my blog.

I am a middle school art teacher, doggie mommy, triathlete and fiber collage artist from Washington State. I do blog on my art blog, but admittedly not too regularily.

Looking forward to another year of exploring and learning.

Happy Beading
Cynthia aka Sheba

Bead Journal 2010

Hello to all the Beaders out there from Alaska. I am new to the Journal project this year, although I followed the one last year and wished I had joined, so I did not want to miss out this year. My Journal pages will be dedicated to our Grandson and Nephew that we lost this year. I am hoping that this will help release a lot of feelings and bring some peace. Beading has always been very therapeutic for me in the past and I am hoping it will be so for the next 12 months. I have already started a blog that I will be posting to as I go along and invite you all to check in any time you like. My blog is I am looking forward to seeing all of the contributions from all of you. Happy Beading!!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

A Post From Wisconsin:

I am happy and anxious to start The 2010 BJP. I am not a bead artist but use beads to embellish and enhance my love of fiber art; mainly crazy quilting, formerly art dolls, and wallhangings.
I like how beads add a lot to a fiber piece and want to learn and be inspired and motivated by other beaders. I have a good sized collection of beads from my artist daughter and have been wanting to put them to use.
I love the art of Laurel Burch who created and lived in my era of the 60's. Unfortunaltely she passed away in the last couple of years, an untimely death for sure. I will miss her art. I also love bright colors and cats. So, from my collection of L.B. fabrics and art work I want to create a 12 month beaded fabric wallhanging embellishing her fabric designs with beads and stitches. These will be smaller pieces, 6x6 squares or circles or a variety of shapes. The piece will evolve as the months pass. - one bead at a time!

Alice T.

Hello from France !

My name is Sylvie. I've participed to the BJP 2008. First of all, I want to apologize to all the new members for my english. You will surely find many mistakes in my posts during this year.
Am I now ready for a new year of BJP ? Really not exactly ! I have to put some beads on the piece of August and I could dedicate myself to the 2010 BJP. However, I decided to have only one objective : to let the beads play with material and colors!
As Robin have written before, I've been one of those who were restricted by their theme last year. Yet, I've chosen to carry on because I want to put them together in a work already prepared.
But now I need to be free in my creating. I will take advantage to try a few new technics, materials and designs. Perhaps not new for some of you, but certainly new for me. We will see later what this will give.
I wish to all of us a good beading year and I look forward to all of our creations.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Hi Everyone!

This is my first time with the BJP and I am very excited. I have changed my mind many times about what I want to do and the start is only days away, and I still don't have a theme. The reason I joined was to help me focus on bead embroidery. I'm looking forward to this challenge, and following everyone's progress. Gale (RedChili)

Friday, December 25, 2009

Hi Everyone!

I love that we're an international group here on BJP3!

My name is Vicki and I am from Colorado and was part of BJP1 till life intervened. I'm a creativity coach and my website for that is here.

I just realized with the completion of a bead embellished doll I recently finished that I'm not enjoying bead embroidery like I used to. So I'm going to be exploring work with wire and other construction techniques, and as long as beads are involved and I make monthly pieces, I guess that qualifies me for this project.

So I'm here to see what happens. Maybe I'll find something that I like with beads and ??? or maybe I'll end up having a Movin' On Sale.

Either way, I'm looking forward to an adventure with lots of fun and creative people!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Hello from Arizona! My name is Kathi and I am ready to begin the 2010 challenge. I have been beading for 25 years and learned while vacationing in the northwoods of Wisconsin. I took classes from the Chippewa and Objibwe Native Americans every summer for approximately 13 years! I even learned to clean porcupine quills. My beadwork has come a long way since then and I teach adult classes at our local Parks and Recreation Center. I founded our Phoenix East Valley Beaders group and we have grown from 5 beaders now to 60, meeting once a month. I recently have turned over the coordinating to another beader in our group after 10 years of running the group. More time to bead!

I look forward to this challenge. I am a preschool teacher by trade so I have decided to make my pages an "apple". I will bead each month with the inspiration coming from my classroom. The children bring me joy and even funny stories so I am sure I will have enough information to pull from for creativity sake. I hope to frame the apples at the end of the year.
Thank you to Robin for creating this challenge. I look forward to seeing everyone's hard work.

Kathi Hofferth

Hello From a New Participant!

Hi there, I'm Shirley from the San Francisco Bay Area. I've been aware of the BJP for quite awhile but this is my first time participating. I signed up for the project with a bit of trepidation. My days and evenings are very full - I am a glass bead maker and fiber artisan who sells both online and at shows. I also teach bead making locally on some evenings and weekends. I take care of my 86-year-old mom who has Alzheimer's and lives with me and my husband. Oh, and I just took a part-time contract job in the world of software development. Yikes!

My romance with beads began in 1996 when a co-worker taught a small group of us how to make earrings with beads. I became obsessed with beads and in January of 2000 I learned how to make them with glass in a torch. Becoming a lampworker really changed my life - brought me to places I never would have dreamed of going, put me in touch with folks who have become such an important part of my life, enabled me to have an alternate career when my work in high-tech came to a sudden halt in 2003.

I hadn't done much with seed beads until about 3 years ago when I taught myself how to do peyote stitch. I believe that 2010 will be the year that I expand my knowledge of bead stitches, mainly due to the BJP!

Last year just by happenstance, I "got involved" with some wool roving. This prompted me to purchase a few books and teach myself how to do wet felting. I find much joy in combining my fiber art with beads - this has been a whole new creative outlet for me.

Since felting, beading, and bead making compete for equal time in my busy days, I will incorporate all three in my bead "journal". I haven't decided on any theme - I may just let my thoughts and feelings guide each monthly project. But I have definitely decided on a format. I love making felted vessels. I always do some kind of beading on my vessels and I've decided that each journal will be a small vessel. If I make it through this year-long project (I have every confidence that I will!!), I will probably try to find - or have someone build - a shelf with 12 "windows" so that I can hang my journal on the wall. Gosh, just talking about it has me excited!

Thank you Gerry for sharing your source of tins for storing beads. And thank you Robin for creating this wonderful project!

Shirley Cook
Fremont, CA


I am Ati and live in Norway.
I have followed a few beading blogs the last year and I was wondering if I could join.
When I saw the new announcement I hit the button and here I am :)
Looking forward to start and get some discipline to do a project every month.
My projects will have the size of a CD. I made a "try-out " last November and I liked it.
It is on my blog:

Tuesday, December 22, 2009


I've had so much fun being part of the Bead Journal Project that I'm back for the third year! My daughter has decided to join us this time and is on Blog #1. Look for Karen. She has been doing interesting bracelets. We love to bead.

Sandy in La Center.
My whole bead collection fits into 2 shoe boxes and I have only been doing beading for a few months. I have looked for a media to express my pent up creativity and after years of adapting other peoples ideas and patterns, Robin's book A Bead At A Time, gave me permission to GO FOR IT and just let yourself create with no rule.s
I have been so happy with the results and get such plessure from veiwing the incredible beading journals of all the wondeful contributors to this blog.
You all inspire me.
Thank you.
From Sydney, Australia.

pleased to be back

Hi everyone. I am diane from New Zealand and have completed 11 of the last 12 months which I am looking at mounting on a wall quilt. I made little men pictures and have not yet managed to send them to the BJP for including on hte photo pages.
My theme for this year is not yet decided but it will either be books, songs or poems and I am restricting the size to card size - cutting them all out before I start will help.
pleased to see some new people and looking forward to seeing the inspiration that abounds.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Here's to a beady new year!

Hi everyone, I look forward to my third go around with BJP. Hope to finish all 12 months this year. I've always found Robin to be very supportive and was thrilled to meet her in person this year. She's even sweeter in real life.

Happy beading to you all!

Beadily yours
Susan E Feldkamp

Looking forward to the Discipline!!

Hi All, my name is Elizabeth Woodford and I am currently living in Northern Virginia about 30 miles south of D.C. THis will be my first BJP although I have been following along with the other projects since they began. Robin has become an amazingly supportive remote ( in the electronic, Internet sense) mentor for me over the recent years. I visit her blog and see her work wherever I can. I also follow many of the past BJP members who have blogs.I have absorbed alot of the excitment that Robin transmits and have used it to jump off the edge and try many different beading techniques.

I have loved beads since I was a small child. I was raised in a very creative home and as children there was no sitting around without a project, without handwork. When I was 9 and we were traveling across country as part of a move, we stopped at a Museum in South Dakota and a wonderful Sioux woman taught me to make beaded daisy chain necklaces. That is an experience that I will never forget!

I consider myself a mixed media artist and love combining all sorts of media and elements into a cohesive whole. I plan to amke use of as many natural elements in my work as I can find. After all, anything with a hole can become a bead. I also love to make my own beads and I teach a class in making Beaded Beads with fabric wire and seed beads. Some of the beading projects that I am most proud of are here and here, if you would care to take a look!

I am so excited to be a part of this year's BJP and I am thrilled that we have a blog to share our experiences, revelations, and creations with each other. In my experience, blogging has opened up whole new worlds for me and my art!!!

I ahve not decided on a theme yet and may not. I think that I will be combining several media with my beads and will probably go with a 3x5 size limit. Decisions Decisions !! So very hard to make when there are so many colors and oh so very many glorious beads!!!!!!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Hi from Augusta, GA!

Hi y'all! I'm MizDenise from Augusta, GA, home of the world-famous Master's Golf Tournament (winner wears a Green Jacket).

This is my second year in the project. Being a part of the group last year helped me to commit myself to being creative daily. With my son leaving for college last fall, I also began using my creative & sewing skills to assist several local charities and pretty much dropped out of regular BJP communication. Hopefully I will find a better balance this year.

However, being a part of the BJP has been important to me and I plan to continue this year, using 3x3 inch squares. I am hoping to explore more non-traditional surfaces this year, combining more mixed media work with beading. I also would love to do more fully encrusted pieces, but will have to see how my time -and budget- go.

My flickr page shows the completed pieces from last year, as well as some of my other creative work. (I still have to complete my final two BJP pieces, although they are designed and ready to go.) I'm looking forward to getting to know you all.

Hello everyone! Im so excited to be involved in this, my first Bead Journal Project. I've oogled the BJP website for the past year like a kid in a candy store and I cant believe Im actually going to be a part of it myself! Im relatively new to beading--most of my experience is making jewlery--and I feel priviledged to "rub elbows" with the rest of you creative geniuses! I've always wanted to learn how to embroider with beads and I cant think of a better way to do it then the BJP.

While I wont have a theme (this way I can change it up as I go along) I was hoping to incorporate some machine embroidery into my pieces. I noticed Karen Cohen, from 2008, used machine embroidery very succesfully so I hope my pieces can be 1/10th as good. I also plan on displaying the pieces in shadow boxes when they are all done. I have not chosen a size yet, guess it depends on the size of the shadow boxes I buy or make (working on a budget here).

I hope to work with Japanese beads. I live in a very rural area and supplies are limited so I've never had the opportunity to buy/use them before but have always wanted to. I found a website that is a good source for Japanese beads and plan on buying them thru the internet. So, as you can see this will be a total learning experience/stretch for me.

Something to share

When I tried to register for this blog it kept telling me too many members but now I find I'm in.....magic!!!
I'm also excited and have picked my theme and size 3 1/2 X 5... I've just about finished the first one and started on the second.. I'd like to be ahead as I know when spring comes and lambing etc. starts I'll get behind...

Just HAD to post and share something. I just love these DC tins to store mixes in and they are the very best little portable bead trays also. You can get them with or without a liner or line them yourself....They come in a pack of 24 and I thought I'd never use that many but almost have them all in use...... source: This site has lots of cool storage items...

Gerry Krueger
Spokane, WA

Excited about starting my January piece!

This is my first Bead Journal experience, and I'm looking forward to using it as a way to stretch myself as a beader. I haven't decided on the format yet for my monthly pieces, but I'm leaning either to a 12 square bead quilt, or to a series of 12 beaded boxes. I just moved to Bern, Switzerland, and so January is a busy month, but I'm itching to get started!

Saturday, December 19, 2009


Hello to all, I'm Nanette from Australia (belle in the participants list) and I've been looking forward to starting this project since I googled 'beading' last year and found Robin's wonderful work, and then the previous BJP blogs.

I've done a little beading, adding it to crazy quilt projects, and a few small beaded dolls, and love the quiet, meditative aspect of sitting with a tray of beads and letting my intuition choose and stitch. I'm not very experienced, but I love beading, so I believe the rest will follow as I learn more.

I'm not planning to work to a theme, and while still not decided on a size, I like the idea of a mandala design, with a circle within a square, and I'm pretty sure I want to join them into a wallhanging at the end. I have an idea for what I'm going to do for January, as it's my birthday month, but the rest is pretty vague right now........I can't wait to see what unfolds.

One of the challenges I've set myself is to use what I already have in my bead stash as much as I can, and not buy anything..a good test of my willpower when I walk by a bead store!

I'm looking forward to being part of this group, to share, be inspired and learn, enjoy the support we can provide each other on this beading journey, and to see where it takes each of us.

Thankyou too, to Robin, for all your hard work and energy in setting up each BJP, welcoming us all, and providing this wonderful opportunity.

Can't Wait to Get Started!

This is my first year participating in the Bead Journal Project. I have been lucky enough to see some of the work done by past participants, and it has blown me away! I can't wait to see what everyone's doing. I'm a somewhat inexperienced beader, so I hope to become a much better beader by the end of this. I'm also looking forward to meeting the rest of the participants.



So thrilled to be part of this for a third time. I will be spending the first 2 1/2 months of the year in Australia so I've had to come prepared as I'm already in Australia. I will be making beaded pieces for the cover of a journal. I have 12 small journals. Each month I plan to write in that journal what happens during that month. The goal is to use that journal from year to year to see how my months change over each year. So looking forward to getting started.


I've been looking forward to the Bead Journal Project since April 2009. Yet I still haven't decided on my size and shape. Probably it will be 6x4 landscape. I look forward to meeting and conversing with other members of BJP through this blog.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Welcome Everyone to the 2010 Bead Journal Project

We begin the third year of the BJP with 287 members, many of whom are returning to the project after participating in either or both of the previous years! A special warm welcome to our new members! For you, it may seem bewildering or even a little scary. Not to worry, you’ll soon find your groove. The BJP blogs will help, as you can post questions here any time.

To both returning and new members, please read the following guidelines! I believe they will help us all to stick with our commitment to this one-year project!

Relax and have fun with it! Bend the rules a little if you need to. The commitment you’ve made is 100% for YOU, for your own benefit and enjoyment. So, each month, as you begin your piece, try to please yourself… not me, not the other members, not your beady friends… YOU!

There are only three basic rules… A. Make one piece a month. B. Include some beads on each piece. C. Make all 12 of your pieces the same size/shape.

If your initial plan/idea doesn’t work for you, change it! In the past two years, I notice some members dropping out because their plan/idea was too ambitious or sometimes because it suited the first few months but didn’t fit well after that. You are free to make changes anytime during the year.

You don’t have to apply a theme to your work, although some find working with a theme very compelling. But, if you start with a theme and later get tired of it, feel free to let it go at any time.
Consistency will naturally happen. You do not have to strive for it. Actually, it’s not a problem at all if your work seems inconsistent!

The BJP is non-competitive! Each and every piece is valid. Each and every piece has merit. Each and every piece is an important step in your personal development as an artist and craftsperson. Each and every piece is an accomplishment! We are a supportive group, encouraging each member to do what works for them in the best way they can. Try to look at your own work with the same non-judgmental eyes that you would use for the work of others in the project.

There are no BJP police! You don’t have to post pictures. You do not have to report to anybody that you finished your piece each month. You can bend the size rule (that all 12 pieces should be the same size and shape) if it will keep you active in the project. Although we encourage you to do one piece per month, you can start a month’s piece early, do two in one month, skip a month… again, whatever it takes to keep yourself active.

There are many possibilities to explore each month! You might try visual journaling or telling the story of your life during this month in a visual way. You might set yourself a learning goal, such as to try one new technique each month. You might consider using your BJP pieces to “get out of the box” and experiment with colors, design and/or style. You are free to set your own goals for the year’s work, if you wish.

If you’re looking for inspiration, I suggest looking at the member pages on the BJP website, here and here. You are eligible to have your own member page when you have completed 8 pieces for this year. Also, I posted pictures of 42 of my favorite pieces from last year’s BJP on my blog, here.

Don’t stress about finishing… about how you will finish each month’s piece or what you will do with the year’s work. Some members have a clear idea of what they want to make with their pieces at the end of the year; many do not know at all. Some will create a wall hanging or a book-like assemblage, while others may not make anything at all with their pieces. Either way is fine. Remember, the real payoff of this work is doing it each month!

You are not required to have a personal blog or website. You don’t even have to take pictures of your finished pieces. All of that is voluntary. However, it’s my impression that those who do post about their BJP experiences and progress on a personal blog seem to develop a wonderful sense of support and community with other BJP members. So, although it’s not required, I do encourage you to give blogging a try.

The BJP blogs are your link to the group! We do have a few guidelines about the blogs as follows:

1. We have three BJP blogs because Blogger limits every group-blog to a maximum of 100 authors. To accommodate all of us, we have divided the group into three equal sub-groups. You are assigned to one sub-group and are able to write a post on that blog only. However, I encourage you to follow and read all three blogs!

2. All posts must be relevant to the BJP. In other words, please don’t post text or pictures about other beadwork you are doing on the BJP blogs. However, when you believe it would be of interest to most BJP members, you may post a sentence or two about a non-BJP topic and a link to a post about that topic on your own personal blog.

3. Please do not post pictures of your monthly pieces on the BJP blogs until after April 1st. The reason for this is that some members prefer not to be influenced by other member’s work until after their own style is set a little. You are welcome to post pictures on your own blog (if you have one) or on our Flickr page at any time. During the first three months, you are welcome to post a link on the BJP blogs to pictures posted elsewhere so that those members who are non concerned about being influenced can take a look. After April l, you may post pictures of your BJP pieces here on the BJP blogs.

4. Please, no movies or sound on the BJP blogs! We want to keep it easy and fast to download. Also, since we’ll have well over 1,000 posts by the end of the year, we have to be mindful of Bloggers “space limits.”

That’s about it, folks! Thanks for taking the time to read through these guidelines. If you have any questions, feel free to post them on the BJP blog or email them to me. Now it’s time to pick up some beads and get started!

Again, welcome everyone! I am in awe of you all for making this commitment and I totally look forward to getting to know you and seeing your BJP pieces!

Beadily yours,

Robin Atkins
Founder of the BJP