Heralds of the Festive Season

Today we celebrate two heralds of the winter festive season, bells and stars.

From jingle bells to carillons, made from pottery, wood, or metal, used in Shintoist, Buddhist, Hindu, Christian, and other religions, found in China, Assyria, Rome, Greece, England…bells are found all around the world!

Teresa Morse, owner of Iceni Bead Designs of Norwich, England, loves making 3-D items, and once she’d tackled angels and stars, she turned her talents to bells. Having designed a 5-step peyote increase, she used two methods of increasing to get the lovely curve of a bell just right.

By the end of 2021, she had 18 designs, and with a few books already in print, published “From Beads to Bells” in 2022. You can find it on your country’s Amazon website under Teresa Morse. Individual patterns – two are exclusive to the book – are listed in Etsy and on Teresa’s website.

Teresa offers a tip on beading bells:

Find something that fits inside the bell – a small bottle or jar – to help keep tension even, and sides straight.

Teresa is now hard at work transferring the bell designs onto 3-D Peyote stitch balls – approved by her trusted test beaders! The patterns are being released when ready. Another book is in the works as Teresa has been asked to publish her angels and flower bell designs! As Teresa says, “I think I’m going to be busy.”

From the UK we take a deep dive down under to Australia, home of Patrick Duggan, whose KingStar creation continues to be a favourite across the world.

Stars, like bells, are found in stories from around the globe. I imagine gazing at stars was our predecessors’ entertainment, creative muse, and instructional screen!

Patrick loves playing with new beads and bead shapes, to see what he can get them to do! His favourite beading art is beadweaving, which he has been doing since 2007. Fast forward to 2022 and his designs have earned him world renown.

KingStar was released in December 2016 as a kitted tutorial and quickly sold just under 100 kits…and continues to sell each year! Patrick riffs one design after another, each inspiring something different and each improving in technique, and sometimes a new bead find inspires innovation.

Experimenting with double sided peyote shapes led him to design the KingStar, which was an off-shoot of his “Starlight So Bright” pattern. As he says, he does love creating Christmas tree ornaments!

Although KingStar has not been taught in a classroom/workshop nor has it been published in any magazine but it appears on many Pinterest pages.

Patrick’s newest KingStar, featured on the right, offers a colour variation and slight changes to the original.

If you love this star design, as so many do, you can find it in Patrick’s newly opened IndieMade shop.

(Originally published October 3, 2022)

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