January 2014 Bead Journal Project

This is going to be really long-winded so you might want to go to the bathroom now then settle in with a cup of coffee!


So I have completed my first “entry” into my Bead Journal Project.  This is my first year doing it and I have to say it’s definitely something new for me.   Usually I’ll see an object (honestly it could be anything from a cork to a bicycle chain (and yes I have both in my stash waiting to be made into something!)) and an idea will jump into my head, and if I don’t draw it or get it down in some way it’s usually lost (until another version pops up!).  But to journal my feelings through beads I just didn’t know how to start at first.  I’ve never been a big journaler, it just never struck me as something I enjoyed doing so I didn’t.


A few days ago my fiance started complaining about me beading in the bedroom, and why did he help me set up my craft room if I wasn’t going to use it.  Then a discussion was started in a FB group I’m part of (Bead Embroidery Forever!) about where you bead and that got me going to clean/organize my room (which hadn’t been done when I moved into it, I just kind of shoved everything wherever it would fit).  During the cleaning/organizing I came across somethings I had forgotten I had – mostly random things collected over the years that mean something to me but have been rattling around in my drawers for years.


One of these is the tag seen on my BJP “An Original By Dorothy Blanchard”.  She was my paternal grandmother.  She died before I was a teenager, but I have very distinct memories of going to her house when I was younger.  Everything you see on my piece pertains to one memory or another.



The fabric/tag: on top of the pellon foundation is a polyester blend white fabric, while she never wore too much white, this fabric is what she would make her pants out of (she made all of her own clothes), and the tag would go on anything she made

The bobbin: she was always sewing, made whatever she could.  Back at my mother’s house I still have her sewing cabinet, a beautiful cherry one with the machine that folds inside of it.

The feathers:  these are cardinal feathers (they are darker, unsure weather female or male). She LOVED cardinals, every type of decoration you could think of she probably had one with a cardinal on it. These particular feathers were found on a friend’s country property

The pearls: grandma Blanchard was a very classy lady, I never saw her disheveled, even if I stayed the night. She was what you might imagine a grandma to be: white permed hair, makeup, fully covered. This is also why I picked the “clean edge” finishing technique.

The green beads: pastels were always what I remember her wearing, like this green.

The scissors/hair: I was working on this piece when I remembered this “charm” that was in a package of Olfa blades.  My hair was ALWAYS an issue when I went to grandma’s.  She had 3 boys and even though I was the 2nd granddaughter long hair was never her forte.  Brushing it was a nightmare, I still remember her trying to get out knots – horrible! So any time I was with her for more then a day she would pack me up to go to Aunt Teddy’s so she could cut my hair. My mother was always furious. (Today my hair is almost 3 ft long -though I’ll be cutting it soon to donate)


The past few months in particular I’ve been missing my family (Christmas was not a happy time).  I grew up in New England and now live in the Midwest and haven’t been home in 3 years.  This was a good way for me to reminisce.  


So that’s it’s. Probably more then you needed to know about me all packed into a 2.5″x3.5″ card.


Some of you from BJP on FB were confused by the name difference – Leithleach Alainn Seodra is not my name, it is a separate FB page I have created strictly for my jewelry (mostly because I don’t own a computer and do everything from my phone 98% of the time and FB makes it very hard to create pages from the mobile version).  I’ve always had a slight obsession with Scotland and Ireland, took a Gaelic class in high school, my “name”means Unique Beautiful Jewelry.

Happy Speedy Beading!

6 thoughts on “January 2014 Bead Journal Project

  1. Nancy Dale says:

    What a lovely way to remember. I think it’s journaling at it’s finest, and that it’s incredibly special that you were able to find so many things to put together into your ‘square’ that mean so much to you. I hope you really enjoyed your first month, it’s wonderful!

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