Artbeads Cafe – Bead Loom Patterns with Cheri Carlson and Cynthia Kimura


CYNTHIA: Hi, I’m Cynthia from Artbeads Cafe,
and Cheri is with me today. Hi, Cheri. CHERI: Hi. CYNTHIA: Thank you for coming. CHERI: My pleasure. CYNTHIA: I’m so excited about what you’re
going to show us today. CHERI: Good, good. CYNTHIA: Cheri is the Queen of the Loom. With the Queen of Halloween and Christmas. The reason is because she’s so good at making
the loom. I practice doing some designs on the loom,
and I did the very simple one like everyone does. You start with the block and then you do the
stripe… and then what? You really don’t know where to start, and
you don’t know how to make a design. So I really want to know, how do I make a
pattern and then reproduce it on the loom? Cheri’s going to talk about it today, so
I’m very excited about that. So we are not showing you how to set up a
loom, the technique to do loom. We have some great handy tips and videos on
the site that Cheri is showing – she did a great job showing us how to do this. Now she’s just going to talk about design
and creating your own pattern. CHERI: How to get started with a pattern. CYNTHIA: Yes. CHERI: I love creating my own patterns. I’ve always loved to color and draw, so
to draw a design is fun for me. You can create any kind of loomed piece using
graph paper. Each little square represents a bead, and
then you can just color in the squares and create a pattern. I just like to play. I had some beautiful brown, orange, and turquoise
seed beads and knew I would love a bracelet in those colors, so that’s where I started. I just used regular colored pencils and started
playing with a motif. So I drew a little flower and then I reversed
it and did it in orange, and then “Oh, I think I’ll make it a little wider.” Now it’s a little cross. Then started working in background colors,
and then wanted to get a repeat of the pattern. Once I decided I liked this little cross,
now what does it look like when I line them all up? So I drew the repeat. But then I’m like, well, let’s play with
the background colors a little bit more, so I drew another section, and then finally a
third section. This is the one that I ended up really liking. CYNTHIA: I have a question. Do you always start from a small pattern like
that and then you grow around it? Because I tend to do the opposite, and I think
that’s why I got stuck. I tend to do the outside and then want to
fill the inside. CHERI: I think it depends on what your objective
is. If you want a large, floral pattern, like
a print, then you might want to start with your boundary and then fill in with your pattern
and coloring. In this case, I really didn’t know what
I wanted. I knew I wanted to do something simple. So I think it just depends. You can just start coloring. You could color a whole background and then
you could zero in on a section and say “this is the area that I want to turn into a piece
of jewelry.” CYNTHIA: Okay. CHERI: So this is where I started and ended
up with this pattern, which I really liked. But if you notice, these are all squares and
straight lines, so what if you want to do something that’s curved? How do you go about drawing that? I drew this up as an example. I have 1-inch strips here. This is a larger grid and a smaller grid,
and then I just drew in with my pencil a curve. Let’s say I wanted to make a vine with leaves
or something. So I just drew in the curve and then picked
the squares that represented that line the best and colored them in with the pencil. So now these are my beads, and this is where
I might start my pattern. And then you could look at that and you could
say “Oh, but I kind of don’t like where this bead is,” and then you could move that
over there if it makes a smoother curve. Sometimes it’s a little hard until you get
it on there. Then I wanted to demonstrate. This is a 1-inch strip as well, but a finer
grid, or let’s say a smaller bead. Same curvy line, but a little less pixelated. So it depends on the style of the piece, how
many beads you want to work with, how fine the beads are as to what that end result is
going to be. The larger the bead, the slightly more pixelated
it’s going to look in the end. CYNTHIA: That sounds pretty easy to do curves. I always thought it was complicated, but no. CHERI: Right. So then this is the pattern that I ended up. You’ll notice this isn’t colored in with
pencils. I happen to know Excel a little bit and decided
why couldn’t I use Excel as a grid and use it to make my patterns, just using the color
formatter? So I was able to just color in each square
the way I wanted, and then the beauty part of that is let’s say you want to see it
with a different color. You don’t have to draw that whole thing
over again in a different color. And then what if I want to change the background? Now you’ve got to draw the whole thing again. Just cut and paste, cut and paste, and then
you can see your different patterns all lined up. So I love Excel as a tool for building patterns. This is the piece that I ended up with. I loved this color combination, so this is
the end bracelet. CYNTHIA: It’s really pretty when you see
it when it’s all done. It’s so different. Very pretty. CHERI: The colors don’t have to represent
exactly. with the colored pencils, my blue wasn’t
turquoise; it was blue. But you just get colors that represent. With the formatting tool you can fine-tune
that a little better and get closer, but it doesn’t have to be exact just as long as
you know what colors represent the colors you want to use. CYNTHIA: That is pretty. CHERI: This is another example of a pattern
that I did in Excel. I wanted a Celtic piece, so I started with
this Celtic pattern in just black and gray, just to get the pattern the way I liked it,
and then just played with color position and tried all kinds of variations. They all look a little different. In the end, I ended up choosing this piece
with the solid green to the outside. This is the blend that I used; this is the
Pacific Kelp, which I love. I love that matte gold bead with that little
bit of shiny silver. CYNTHIA: It goes so well for your design. It’s really pretty. CHERI: Love those colors. So then I decided I wanted to do a piece with
circles. I love Pinterest and I’m very inspired by
all kinds of pins and had seen a pattern – it was a photograph, but a beautiful pattern
of some wood, and thought I would try to replicate that. First I set out to draw a circle in Excel
and decided “that’s not really a circle.” A little bit more of an oval. Easy thing, though, is that I was able to
shrink that quickly and turn that into a circle, and then I just made a series of rings and
colored them so that you could differentiate the colors. And then I took sections of this circle and
started chopping them in pieces and staggering them, which is the overall look that I was
going for. So you can do that very quickly in Excel. And then once I got the circles in the order
that I liked, then I colored them. You can spend all kinds of time doing that. That’s really the fun part. So this is the color pattern that I ended
up with. However, I drew this and planned to make this
bracelet using 11° seed beads, so my bracelet size is really from about here to here. What I did was I reprinted just the section
that I needed, and I blew it up so that it’s much easier to see. And then I like to use a sticky note – let’s
say this is the row that I’m working on. I’ll just put the sticky note on top just
so that I can see that row very cleanly. But another really simple little tip that
I’d like to share is when I have this pattern laid out – and you can do this on graph
paper too; let’s say you’ve drawn it in pencil – is to number your rows along your
pattern to correspond with your pattern. Then I cut that off and taped it to a little
piece of cardstock. Because one of the things you have to do is
know how many of these little beads to add onto your needle, and this is row after row. How many green beads are there? Is that seven, or are there eight? I’m not sure. So you can just line this little numbered
ruler, let’s say, up there and see the number that it represents and know how many beads. Then, okay, now I’m onto the red. Slide it over, and that’s how many beads
I need. CYNTHIA: This is such a great idea. I love it. This is so simple, this little tool. CHERI: I just figured it out out of necessity. It was “This is going to take forever, so
how can I make that faster?” So my little tip. CYNTHIA: And this is the beautiful bracelet
that you made. It’s gorgeous. CHERI: This is the one in the end. This is the 11° seed beads. But I want to show you a little what a difference
makes. This is done on the Little Ricky, and these
are the 15° seed beads. This is the same pattern, but finer beads. You can see that this pattern is a little
more pixelated than this one. So the smaller the bead, the finer the line
becomes. CYNTHIA: That’s why people can make intricate
patterns. CHERI: Very intricate. CYNTHIA: Because they’re using very, very
small beads, right? CHERI: Very small. And really, the more rows you have, the more
room you have to spread that curve out too. So the wider the bracelet, it’s easier to
make curves. It doesn’t have to be a wide bracelet, but
it gets easier when you have that space. It’s a lot of fun. CYNTHIA: I can see that. You can color, and it’s so relaxing when
you color, right? CHERI: It really is. CYNTHIA: And then you make some beautiful
patterns. Thank you so much, Cheri. These are great, great tips. I love all the information and all your little
tips that you have. It’s not intimidating anymore to design
a pattern. And you said that you find your inspiration
a lot on Pinterest, right? CHERI: Mm-hm. CYNTHIA: Who doesn’t love Pinterest? And it could be a mosaic, it could be a painting,
it could be whatever. CHERI: It could be flowers in a garden somewhere. It can be anything. And then just make it your own. That’s what I love, is just making that
design original. CYNTHIA: That’s true. Thank you so much. CHERI: You’re welcome. CYNTHIA: I’m so happy that we did this video. This is such great information. I’m hoping that you had so much fun too,
and get busy doing those designs. Those are so great. Thank you so much for joining us today at
Artbeads Cafe, and make sure to subscribe to our email newsletter and you can see some
more designs and some great promotions. Merci beaucoup, au revoir, a bientot! CHERI: Bye bye!

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