Engineer by day, beadweaver by night (mostly), I like to look for answers to questions.
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Saturday, January 28, 2012

"Nest" Team Challenge

This year one of my goals is to enter at least 6 of the monthly challenges from the Etsy Beadweavers Team. Here is my entry for this month:  Honeycomb Bracelet

 The theme for the Etsy Beadweavers January Challenge is "Nest".  Here is a description:

“It will still be winter in the Northern hemisphere in February and I believe thinking about nestling could make us feel comfortable. What I would like us to do: If you think about (or google for) "nest", you will find much more than birds building nests. Insects like bees, hornets and others also do.
So let´s get inspired by their pieces of art. Let´s see what ideas nature gives us. I´m sure, everybody will find a way to find their own interpretation of NEST……My intention is NOT building whatever nest in beads. When you think about what associations we have with the term "nest", it´s not necessary to construct a complete copy of a natural item.

For me structures are important. You cut out a certain detail and transform it into beaded art, the main thing is that everybody will have the association NEST!"

You can read more about the challenge here on the Etsy Beadweavers Blog.

When I was a child I spent a lot of time at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, which has tons of great, hands-on learning activities. One of the permanent displays in the museum at that time was a bee hive inside a cylinder of glass. One end of the cylinder was open to the outside of the building so the bees could come and go.  It was fascinating to watch the bees fly in and out of the hive and move around the honey comb. If you touched the glass in an area where the bees were thickly clustered, it felt warm and cozy.  I wanted to capture this feeling in my challenge piece.

I set out to make open hexagon shapes in warm, golden colors.  The first problem I ran into was that the beads tend to pull into a circle on the hexes on the edge of the bracelet, though I do get nice straight hexagon sides where they border each other.

After a little experimentation, I discovered I could give the edge hexagons a better shape if I added an extra bead at the corners.

So I made a golden honeycomb bracelet.  Now I just needed to choose a clasp.  I went down to the fabric store and found some cute honey bee buttons.  The only problem was that they just didn't quite go with the colors in by bracelet.  This was very sad for me because I really did a good job attaching that bee.

So I made a new bracelet in yellow, white and black colors.  I used black drop-shaped beads in the corners.  I think this is a much better match.

Now I just need to decide what to do with my first bracelet.  I'm thinking about folding it into a three dimensional shape and using it as a pendant (after I take the bee off).  What do you think?


  1. That is such a cool design. It looks difficult to do. Very unique and pretty.

  2. I like the hexagon shape - it does look like honey comb! Team competitions are great to help keep the motivation going. I probably need a little dose of motivation this month. :)

  3. Lovely intricate work. Thank you for the tutorial - maybe in my next life I'll become a beader. For now - I'll just drool over your creations. Thanks also for visiting my blog.

  4. Awesome design Connie! This is so unique. I think that it works really well as a bracelet. Thanks for sharing your process with us.

    Good luck with your challenge goal this year!

  5. That is so cute! I'd say that you successfully met your challenge!

  6. That is so sweet! Great job!
    My challenge for 2012 is (re)learning how to knit - hope to show off my first project soon :)

  7. This is such a pretty idea. I love yellow & this pattern is fantastic. Thanks for stopping by my blog, I am a follower of yours now too!

  8. I love your entry. Thanks for sharing your process - the drop beads are the perfect solution!


I love hearing your thoughts, questions and stories!