Our staff recently had the chance to chat with designer Kelly Wiese, author of the new book A Beaded Romance and owner of the online business The Bead Parlor. Kelly has been designing beadwork for 16 years and teaches nationally at bead shows and other venues. Her first book, Beaded Allure, was released in 2011; and that same year, she was named a designer of the year by Beadwork, a national beading magazine.
A Beaded Romance features 26 beadweaving projects, including necklaces, bracelets, earrings and an anklet, with patterns ranging from beginner to advanced. The projects are romantic and delicate – as Kelly says, they are “a little on the vintage side but with a modern edge.” I hope you enjoy learning more about Kelly in the following Q&A!
Stitch Craft Create: Thank you so much for taking the time to chat with us, Kelly! Let’s start at the beginning – how did you get your start in the wonderful world of beading?
Kelly Wiese: A friend helped me get started. I saw some jewelry she had made, which I loved, and she offered to teach me. There was no turning back after that – I really loved beadweaving!
SCC: Your new book A Beaded Romance is now available. What inspired this new release, and how does it differ from your first book, Beaded Allure?
KW: There was such a good response to Beaded Allure, so I felt that more projects in the same romantic style might be well received. A Beaded Romance has projects that utilize some different stitches than the projects in Beaded Allure. I think the projects are a little more detailed, also. There are still some for beginners, but there are a lot of projects for the intermediate to advanced beader also.
SCC: What are some of your favorite projects from A Beaded Romance?
KW: My favorite project is the Coming Up Roses Lariat, with the Regency Necklace coming in a close second.
SCC: We love that the projects feature a rating system as a guideline to help the more inexperienced beaders decide where to begin. Do you have any advice you can give readers who perhaps have never tried beadweaving, but would like to start?
KW: I think new beaders should start with a simple project so that they don’t get frustrated with it. I also think it is a great idea for beginners to take a class or two at their local bead store. You always learn things in a class, even from the other students.
SCC: Tell us a little bit about your creative process when designing a new project. To where or whom do you look for inspiration, and how does it all come together?
KW: I look for inspiration in a lot of places. I often look at vintage jewelry for ideas. I also like nature themes – flowers and leaves are favorite elements I like to use in my designs. Often, my original idea changes considerably before the piece is finished. The ideas in my head don’t always work out the way I planned.
SCC: What’s coming up next for you in 2013?
KW: In 2013 I plan on adding some new shows to my schedule, and I also hope to get some more new designs completed!