Thursday, February 25, 2021

Book Club postponed due to me being sick, new zoom link for March 5th

 I got swooped off my feet by something. I don't think it's Covid, but it surely kicked my butt. No book club today, it's postponed to the 5th. Here is your link:

Kinga Nichols is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: My Meeting
Time: Mar 5, 2021 10:00 AM Mountain Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting
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Meeting ID: 853 2564 6074
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Friday, February 12, 2021

My contribution to the Museum of Beadwork's Beaded Square Project

 You a Beader, Dear Reader? Then you surely know about the beaded square project. What a fabulous idea to showcase our collective talent.  Here is a link to the website of this noble project.

I have been following the updates with my fellow beaders' submissions for the last so many months and I really wanted to participate. To be part of such a magnificent joined effort to showcase our thoughts, hopes, dreams and fears beaded and displayed together.

You might not think that a 6x6 square is a lot to cover with beads. 

Until you try to cover that 6x6 square with those beads. Lucky me, I had some projects laying around that were class samples not entirely finished.

 A beaded face by The Face of Time.  Back when 2020 still  seemed like a good idea, this design class was headlining my beady-teachy efforts for the year. Then we got tucked away for a year and the class was a minor zoom success, but still very close to my heart. So I have a handful of half finished embellished faces left and I picked the sweetest, daintiest to destroy by marking her up with black permanent marker tattoos and dribbling super glue to make her cry tears of ghoulish awesomeness.

I also had a moth sample from another class that I decided to paste to the unsuspecting face, silencing her in a beautifully disturbing fashion.

Sometimes I look at the things I make and I feel entirely uncomfortably see through. This is one of those times. It does not take a team of well trained shrinks to interpret this one, eh? Well, that's just fine. I am entirely happy with this cacophony.

I am going to refrain from trying to explain what is going on in this piece as far of what it means. It may even mean different things to different people.

But let's look at what things make up the whole besides the before mentioned components. 5 taxidermy eyeballs. Some are more obvious than others. The better to see you with.

Lots of Anna Bronze components.The better to  feel and taste you with, if you please.

Destroyed and cut up antique lace that ought to smell like crushed violets and mud but in fact it does not.

For my backdrop, I used teal leather. I am VERY fond of this metallic substance, particularly when it's combined with bright green. Since I have a large pile of Swarovski pearls in this color and since looking at my Swarovski pearls pisses me off, it seemed like a fine time to use them. I loved the eden green pearls right away when they came out, they are just so vibrant and over the top happy. 


I wanted the teal leather leaves to jut out from the plane of the backdrop like acanthus leaf carvings bursting forth from a column. To gently caress the ghastly apparition's chin.

For the upper portion I wanted a mix of things that are full of life and growth mixed with suspiciously decaying matter. Hence the snail, eyeballs, plants and empty pods. All things in balance.



The  really freeing thing about this whole square making process for me was to not have to worry about how this is all going to fit. How it should be wearable and durable.

The process of creating something that will hang on a wall made it so that I could kick back and not worry about what this is going to look after someone sweats on it. Being prone to worries, the idea of someone having to dust this did cross my mind and caused me anxiety that in fact is revisiting me as I am typing about this, but hey. That is not my circus, and certainly not my simian individuals. 

For the moment I am feeling entirely happy and fulfilled by having manifested this fine nightmare. If it wasn't for the pandemic, it would have never happened. I like having time for such fancies, which makes it so that I seriously doubt that I will ever go back to traveling as much as I used to. Well, we shall cross that bridge when traveling is a thing again. For now, I am going to stick with being happy.



 


Sunday, January 31, 2021

On Fish that haunt and book club updates and such....

 I have recently released a kit on Etsy. It's the biggest, most expensive kit I have ever made. It's going to stay that way, as in: after this I will make some kits that are more affordable, but this just needed to get out into the big world and swim free.

I named it Come Be My Light after a book that was about Mother Teresa, released shortly after her death. I read it at the time of the publication and it left me thinking about her; her faith - for so long that I randomly named a necklace after it almost 12 years after reading it. The book was a series of letters between the mother and her spiritual advisor. My takeaway from it may not be the moral of the book, but what I got out of it was that after her calling, Mother Teresa did no longer receive heavenly communique.


 

Up till that point, she felt like such events guided her life. Then they stopped. Complete silence, no more radio transmissions and so she felt truly alone and forsaken and wrong. Throughout her talking to her spiritual advisor, she came to the conclusion that the radio silence was a deepest sort of unity with Christ. Christ on the cross. What He experienced in the "Father, why have you forsaken me" moments. That; in utter loneliness, Teresa felt the unity with the loneliest moment of Christ and therefore she was able to go on knowing that in the silence, the deep darkness of the human condition, God was with her and she shared the suffering of Christ.

Well, I found beauty in this. In a way this is not very different from existentialism. In finding freedom in unlikely places of imprisonment. In a way it's really not very different from moral relativism either.


It made me think about how we narrate our own story is so very important. There is what we perceive out there, but the story we tell can be a tragedy or a comedy. Drama, suspense, horror? A thriller, a documentary of any sort. A happy cartoon perhaps?  It's up to each of  us.  And there is an  awful lot of shit around lately- maybe this has been always this way, it seems like there is a lot more of it since the pandemic. So there is an onslaught on the excrement of the world in never ending tsunamis, but we tell the story of our own lives to ourselves, to the world every single day and we either becomes heroes, victims, bystanders, perpetrators, or anything else. The story is either of the absence of God's light, or the absence turns into a solemn unity with the divine, through suffering.Or a comedy, if it was up to me.

What the narration of the story made Mother Teresa do is up to just and timely criticism these days and it is beyond the scope of my  musing to get entangled in that in this silly blog post of mine about a necklace. But more than her positive or negative actions, her thought process inspired me to look at my life and keep on evaluating the story I tell every step of the way. As humans we have power over very little of what happens to us: Where we are born and what we look like still influences so much of what we can hope for in 2021 that it makes me sad every time I think of it. But we all owe it to ourselves to narrate our stories the way we see it fit. Hence my life is never a tragedy, more of a comedy in progress- and out of all, Mother Teresa's broken receiver for God's radio helped my understanding that my internal narration is influenced by outside happenings, but it is NOT defined by them.


This is great, but what does it have to do with fish? Anglerfish in particular? 

Nothing really. But they have lights. And I have been making them here and there for 10 years. 

And they are chasing a light. The glowing lights the anglerfish are after a highly stylized, almost alien looking light sources. Will it consume them, or will they be consumed by it? Who knows. It's definitely an eldritch glow and one of them is gibbous and there are wee suction cups involved, so really, who knows? Why did it remind me of Mother Teresa? Who knows what got cross wired in my head to make that connection. I like that it happened, but who knows.The Mother and Lovecraft were not that different after all.

The kit is nothing new. You don't need it. If you have done any fish project of mine, you are not getting anything new here. It's very straight forward, the colors are right, the shapes are right. God knows I don't like everything I do, but this feels right. It's a good composition, fits right, has everything right going for it. It's a giant buh bye solute to Swarovski and not in a good way.The last new project from me that features their products. It's a fine thing. Not a useful thing,not an innovative thing. It's a nod to a decade of fishies. For a while I was solely known as "the girl who does fish, you know, the one with the accent". There were times I resented this, times I was all about it. And now there are just times. Tis' what tis'. Here is the last monument to that reputation, embracing the wonders of fame it has bestowed on me,wondering at how random that is; revisiting some roots. Call it what you may.  It is whatever you say it is. So is me. Neither the fish or I care much. We just go on telling our stories to ourselves, reinventing ourselves according to our needs, according to our capabilities and some such.

I certainly did not invent fish. I certainly did not invent bead embroidery and I would ever so strongly urge you to take a comedic approach to life rather than a dramatic or tragic one and laugh wholeheartedly at any fool who tells you they invented any kind of beading. Good friends and neighbours: we are but dwarfs standing on the shoulders of giants. A great many things came before us that we build upon even without realizing and it's good to eat a slice of humble pie. If my work ever inspired you, let this one inspire you to do your own thing too without dropping a dime. I am honoured that if it does. If you feel like dropping $225 on a kit, I got them right here. ( Click on the word here at the end of the previous sentence to be magically transported to my Etsy store, while supplies last.) 

Either way, I like that I see fishies looking back at me from unlikely places. I see them pop up on social media here and there. Makes my heart sing with joy. Keep on making them. They make the world a happier place.

That's about what I got to say about fish.

Now onto book club matters. Our discussion today (1/31/2021) about Keith Donohue's Stolen Child was wonderful. Lively conversation about the book, about beads, about current issues ensued for longer than planned, because we never ran out of things to talk about. It was the bee's knees.

If you feel like participating  the next time, the next book club zoom meeting will take place on February 25th at 10:00 am mountain time and we will be discussing Muriel Barbery's The Elegance of the Hedgehog." Here is the info you need to join us on zoom:

Kinga Nichols is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: Book Club with Kinga, February 2021
Time: Feb 25, 2021 10:00 AM Pacific Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting
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Meeting ID: 822 4496 4353
Passcode: 115836
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Now, since you read so many words without pictures, I feel obliged to entertain you with pictures of current creations that only exist for their own purpose, not kits, not something you can buy in any shape or form. I have posted these on Facebook before, so if you follow me there, these are not going to be that new, but still. Pictures. Pictures of pretties:




On a personal note: I have a new pugfant to cherish and to hold. I needed baby energy, and I got more than I bargained for. I give you Agent Nancy Mayhem. Yes, she is a model.

A further note: You can see a lot more pictures of all my present and past and possibly future projects on Facebook. I am an ardent and outspoken lefty. If you don't want to follow that, instead of adding me as a friend, you can search my pictures. The strictly bead art related material is public. The rest is private.





Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Book club meeting #2

 Come join my book club discussion on January 31st at 10:00 am Mountain Time. You can join in later too as your schedule allows if you can't make it exactly at starting time. The length of the meeting will depend on participation and if we have enough to talk about.

The subject of the book club meeting is Keith Donohue's The Stolen Child.

This will be the second book club meeting, and all are welcome. Bring your beading, knitting, Bloody Mary, coffee, tea, whatever. Mostly, come as you are. You haven't read the book but you want to hang out with your fellow beady peeps? Please join us. 

The books are great, but in all honesty, this is an effort to bring beaders together from around the world. These are some rough times. We all spend a lot more time in solitude than before. You don't have to be lonely. Come hang out. Bitch and stitch. Whine and wine. Hang out and just listen, if that is what you wish to do. We will have a grand time.

Kinga Nichols is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: My MeetingZoom Book and Bead Club
Time: Jan 31, 2021 10:00 AM Mountain Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89490487509?pwd=cmx1YXQ3MFN3azViSTBxQWpPekcwZz09

Meeting ID: 894 9048 7509
Passcode: 716340
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Thursday, November 12, 2020

Here comes Krampus, come give him a hug, because he is definitely the mascot for 2020

 For about three years in a row, I would have this vague idea that I should create a Krampus themed piece. 

I would get excited, I would also be very busy, traveling all over the place and have very little time to even think straight. I would hunt artists friends who could make me a Krampus focal and then, inevitably, things would end there and another holiday season would be gone.

I guess it took 2020 for Krampus to "come through". As he does represent the dark side of things, it's indeed a good time for him to emerge out of my beady subconscious.

Of course not going anywhere due to a global pandemic, I had more time to plan for his beady existence and was aided by a talented, visionary artist, Dorothy Supri of Skyline Beads in my Krampus realization.

She made me the Krampus dominos that form the horned and fanged and furry center of this cuff.

When taking classes from me, I oftentimes tell participants to not bury their focals. On this I mean that everything that goes around your chosen centerpiece, needs to serve that centerpiece. You chose a worthy object to showcase in your artwork. A piece of jewelry, a design is art. Composition matters. If you have a focal, that is your starting point and everything you build around it should bring that focal to life. Too many colors and you bury it in a cacophony of  color and texture instead of building harmony with your focal as the theme.

Such advice to myself was a little hard to follow on this piece, but I think my intentions succeeded in harmony with lots of minor key progressions and the generous use of  tritone.

Before I go into what and why went on the bracelet though, I want you to get familiar with Krampus:

If you like horror and you have morbid curiosities, you know him from movies of the past decade. There have been books about him too, but interestingly the customs surrounding his part of the holidays never took root in this country's soil with immigrants arriving with their old ways from Europe. Maybe it's just really hard to sanitize the Christmas devil for a progress believing, forward moving society that is no longer rooted in the old ways.

I encourage you to google Krampus and his customs in different European countries.

 For now, let it suffice that for the Christian, mostly Catholic past, he has been Saint Nick's companion for a long time. Beyond that, he most likely is part of a much older past.

 Different countries have different Christmas traditions, and what I was subjected to, being born the last decade of the socialist era in Hungary, might be neither very traditional or very representative of how people think of him these days.

When I was a child, we celebrated Christmas on December 24th, in the evening. The tree would be decorated just that day and would usually stay up till Epiphany.

 Santa had absolutely no hand in Christmas: It was the LITTLE BABY JESUS- not His adult form intended for Easter , but the tiny newborn Lord with His pink toes; aided by heavenly angels who brought presents. The Baby Jesus and the angels then  would swiftly operate a tiny aluminum bell probably manufactured in the Soviet Union- in the room with the tree- to indicate that they are done, the presents are delivered and one can go and unwrap them now. 

Interestingly, much like Santa is never caught in the US, no matter how hard I tried to spy on the heavenly crew, I was incapable of ascertaining that I was told the truth about this occurrence and all questions regarding how newborns enter households in the winter all naked and wrap presents were thwarted for the first few years of my life by my religiously confused parents. Even though my mom was going through her most staunchly atheistic years, the tiny lord with his pink toes remained a thing on Christmas.

So what does this have to do with Krampus? Nothing. He comes on December 6th. This day is Saint Nicholas' day. Since Christmas was always a very private affair, I suppose this day evolved for more communal celebration. Much like Halloween in the US, December 6th, as we call it Mikulas- that is Saint Nick Day- we get candy.

Back in the day the candy would be in a small, dark red cellophane bag. The old cellophane bags split and shredded so easily, it was the most impossible gift wrapping method ever invented. But the bag was beautiful, and the torn pieces could be held up to one's flashlight at night to turn under one's blanket into a magical red cave. 

The new bags are more durable and less magical. Figures.

At any rate, the candy is symbolically  wrapped in red, for the color for the Man in Red and symbolizing the sack he carries filled with all the goodies. A child would get one of these bags from her presents, possibly grandparents and other relatives.  But not for nothing.

One would be very excited about Santa "watching" for a month by now. (Any longer, and the 5 year old loses focus, but it's indeed good practice to start scaring the shit out of them early November.)

Much like Jesus and God always watching, Santa, starts watching. This has given me real worries going to the bathroom for example, but I was assured that he watches if I am good and bathroom habits concern him little.

I was told he has special far seeing devices that allow him to observe me and every other child all the time to make sure I am good. So far, this is all good, right? Well, here comes Krampus:

If a child is not good, Krampus is going to take him. Because Krampus travels with Santa. He has his own sack or basket. ( This part varies.) He might have chains with him to chain you up too. One thing he always has is a broom. This is to better beat you with. And hence, the pretty red bag of candy comes with a small broom too.

Besides Krampus, there are other scary entities who have sacks and take children away mostly for feasting on them but they aren't tied to the holidays. There is Koko .

To him I already dedicated two pieces of jewelry. There is the Man with the Sack. From what I remember the Man with the Sack and Krampus cook children first, which stood out in my mind as more civilized than being eaten alive, so I was most scared of Koko, who eats kids alive, but this was a personal preference, really.Krampus was pretty scary in his own right.

Back to my childhood Krampus: He is Santa's helper, they travel together and they appear at your parent's office party, the school Santa party, the apartment building you live in has a Santa and a Krampus too, so some lucky duckies might confront Krampus 3+ times a season. And since adults love nothing as much as scaring kids into submission, Santa could have cotton balls for his beard and look entirely ridiculous, but Krampus acting always seemed spot on. 

The beating with the broom you got, it was sincere. The costumes were a lot better.No Krampus ever forgot the goddamn sack. In general, Krampus stole the show.He was far more believable and real. 

And so, to be good, one of the acts of ritual submission was  shining your boots. Given that I personally only ever had one leaky pair I worn every day, it's not like I had to pick one to shine. On the 5th, you got your daddy's shoe shine kit out, tried to get away with only shining one side, the one the little red bag of candy is going to go into, but you were told that you had to shine the other boot too, or you are not being good.  And then you went to bed and hoped the devil did not take you, and you woke up to candy in the boots.

And that is my childhood story regarding Krampus.

Now onto this bracelet and what went on it/into it.

Eyes. Two kinds of taxidermy eyes. I wanted the focal to stand out but I also wanted the whole cuff to be its own monstrous thing. So it has furry eyeballs, wart like Czech beads and vintage opal glass cabochons and red Swarovski crystal carbuncles.
Since it's the holiday season, it has lots of gold in the form of size 15 gold plated charlottes with an iris finish, and white opalescent beads lined with gold that glow just right. The red was a natural Christmassy choice too. The sooty, matte black is like the coal dust the devil always seems to be covered in.
A good Krampus bracelet needs personality. And it obviously needs good eyes to observe your behavior with so it can beat you, stuff you in the sack and eat you.

White spikes add further horn/tusk like textures, nicely complementing the tufts of eyeball hair.
The design is wearable, with a lovely heavy, substantial feel. A statement piece for sure.

 The red metallic Italian lambskin showing in the back, because of course the back needs to be as pretty as the front.

There. That is my Krampus story and Krampus bracelet. Shall this excite you, you can get one here while supplies last: 

https://www.etsy.com/listing/903206333/krampus-kuff-diy-bead-embroidery-kit?ref=shop_home_active_1









Monday, October 12, 2020

What a strange year 2020 is!

 Dear Reader ,

I have left you in the beginning of the year all hopeful of how very exciting this 2020 business is going to be. I was jumping out of airplanes for a hot second, got two new tattoos, was going to show up at your local bead store and bead society and barely be home as usual, very much like the last seven years have been. 

Then life came to a full stop as you know it.

On a personal level, lots of changes happened. Without getting too personal, I am getting a divorce -it's still in the making because things take time, but it has been in the making for a lot longer than when the legal part began. This is all good. Not everything is meant for a whole lifetime, and endings do not negate beginnings and good times spent together. They just put a period at the end of a sentence that needs to not go on forever. Stories go on, people go on. It's the natural order of things.

I also got into a new relationship with an old friend and that part happened faster than I thought such a thing would come to pass, but then; god's ways aren't always knowable, so that's that. This year has been hard and I have been humbled and tumbled, chewed up and pooped out. After some terrible personal losses which are no subject for a blog post, life goes on. Day by day, during a strange, trying time. Let it suffice that I am not the same person I was when this year begun, and for that I am partially grateful and partially will be eternally sad. 

On a beady-business level, this year threw the monkiest monkey wrench  into my planning. In January I knew what I was going to do, who I was going to be, and where I was going to travel from Alaska to Holland in the next 2+ years. 

I had class projects lined up, no time to do anything but work.

Then the pandemic hit. Knowing some of you haven't left your homes since March, I do not need to introduce the fucking monster that robbed you of your year and probably the next one as well.

We all went from planning for years ahead to planning for the next month. Or the next week. Or tomorrow. Thank god, I am no longer in a situation having to earn my rent money working a minimum wage job. My heart goes out to every single person who had to show up to shitty jobs to make sure they don't get evicted, to put food on their kids' tables. To simply stay alive.

Thanks to the generous support of all y'all beadikin through the past so many years; I did not need to get a job selling either my body or my soul. I got to sit with my sorrows, fears, hopes, angst, itching to get on the road but staying put-  and ideas that I never had time for.

Let me explain what you have been getting out of me for the past 7 years while I have been teaching you beady projects: I went from having the shittiest day job with the biggest creative outlet on the side to trying to manage how to make 200 kits of the same project that I can teach for a year times seven or eight, to give everyone options. How to budget for this a year or two out. How to manage expectations. 

You showed up at your local bead store, I showed up with my classes and kits, you supported your bead store, you supported me, by taking my class I paid my bills and barely had time to think of anything else other than taking bathroom breaks.

This has always been a one flea circus. No matter how many cranky emails, Facebook messages and Etsy convos were sent to my shipping department/someone/anyone, it was always just me and it started to eat me alive little by little.

Then this pandemic hit.  Everyone is doing their zoom classes, all the sudden you can take any class with any person you always wanted to take a class with from across the globe- IN YOUR JAMMIES.

Good for you! But this came with tremendous expectations. Bead stores that sold my classes to their local beaders are now selling my classes to my customers I have had for years - globally. The whole industry went from local to global. This in a sense is a wonderful thing. There is diversity of new ideas, new ways to look at beading and so much progress and ground breaking innovation, I get goosebumps just thinking about it.

But you, dear beady reader, who now can take super cool classes from any artist far far away- you got spoiled. Well, I can't blame you. You deserve access to whatever is out there and those artists far far away are finally getting prime access to kind, generous US based beady folk. Everyone is happy.

Where does that leave me? It leaves me thinking: cream rises. But shit floats too. Only for so long. If something doesn't work, if someone is not a good teacher, you will not go back to them for seconds. I am full of great ideas and not ready to cry uncle and roll over. The beady paradigm has changed. You now have access to any instructor you ever wanted to take classes from across the globe, and you know what? This coincides with my need for not doing the same thing 200 times over.

Despite the terrible occurrences of this year, I have been more creative than ever. I am getting  really close to being done collecting material for my book I will self publish in the foreseeable future. I have cranked out more significantly new and exciting kits that you could do at your own home's comfort than any other year past.

I did teach plenty of zoom classes and I did finish my obligations to any bead store I had outstanding agreements with after April of this year till the end of 2020. But the days of me planning for two to three years ahead are gone. The days of a bead store offering classes in person to their local clientele are gone for the foreseeable future. We now all have the same customers.This does change at least for me how I offer classes.

 So the days of me laying out tens of thousands of dollars ordering materials for roughly seven or eight classes being taught over and over for a year at your local stores- those days are over as long as we are stuck at home. Let's face it: you are not going to your local bead store for the same reason I am not getting on an airplane to teach you. We are both scared shitless of a virus that may either be nothing, or kill one of us, or someone we come into contact with, or leave any of these parties incapacitated for the rest of their lives.

So you are in the market for beady classes. But given that you now can take anyone's classes anywhere, you might not give a hoot about the class you can take from me thrice a month from three different places in your jammies. And that is entirely good, because starting next year, unless a class is an absolutely fantastic groundbreaking idea like let's say- my butterfly class- you want something new.

Well, dear reader, it is just so that your need for  a new and exciting thing coincides with my not wanting to do the same thing 200 times over. Up till the quarantine, I haven't realized how heavy that was getting. How much it was limiting my creativity. It was definitely putting a break on experimentation, innovation, or at least on personal excitement about things I want to see existing in the world because I designed them.

So what does this mean for you and me? If you are one of my loyal customers who has been taking my classes for years and you enjoy step by step projects with really precise instructions; you will get what you need: these will be created in batches of 70-100 and sold on Etsy as they come out. I might not have more than one release, but at least you get a chance to get one of these limited edition kits.

For those of you dear friends who like my design classes, what I will do for you, and for my own excitable, experimentacious soul ( I know that's not a word, but it ought to be); for you, I will have limited edition design classes for 12 people at a time, only repeating as many times as there is a need for it, but certainly not dozens of times.

This will allow me to put together personalized kits for you, give you entirely one of a kind design elements and a lot more attention than you would get in an" in person" class, not only by the virtue of having half as many people in class as before, but also being able to see me beading alongside you throughout the entire class and you having to pick my brain all day.

This is not going to be something I will do every weekend. In fact, I kind of had it with being away from my own life almost every weekend, so most of these classes will be on my terms, during the week, with weekends added occasionally. Hopefully you will find them exciting enough to take a day off for them if needed.

What do I have planned so far? I will have a bracelet design class for sterling opals. I will have a design class for making a kickass necklace with antique keyholes. I will also participate in professionally organized weekend long online bead retreats and will keep on collaborating with bead stores as I see fit but a lot more rarely than  in the years past. We can either hold on to the past and hope that things will forever be the same while they are obviously not the same, or try to reinvent the wheel and keep on being creative in our own ways. That second option is what I will go with.

Where does that leave those of you who still can't afford to take my classes but really like my projects? I am not going to lie to you. I am not rolling in dough, so there is only so much random generosity I can offer. So far this year I offered some seats in some classes for free, given away lots of goodies as freebies and raised $9000 for the ACLU.On Thanksgiving I will give away more kits or classes. I am not sure about that just yet.

But my heart goes out to anyone who is stuck at home all by themselves with no end to this apocalypse in sight and no money to throw around. You are not alone! This pandemic has effected all of us, and I want to reach out to you and lift your spirits too. How about a beady book club on zoom? Free of charge. I pick a book that will make you feel better, then I send you a zoom link and we bead together and shoot the shit. I promise to pick things that are good for the soul. I bet you have a library to borrow from if you can't just buy the book, you have beads and I bet you NEED company. I am here for you. This is the best I can do. We can bead and converse and just hang out once a month. That's something. I think a book club is a good idea because this way we have something concrete to talk about. We don't need to sit around awkwardly waiting to start a conversation, shifting to politics and religion and things that trigger people.

If you follow my Facebook posts, you know where I stand on politics. I don't need to talk about that any more. And I also don't need an audience. I want to give you something that lifts you up and out of the collective misery this year has been, give you a fine way to escape and have a starting point for a conversation while you get to bead with people who also want to do exactly this. Bring a friend, bring a drink, do not give me any money, log onto zoom and just hang out for a while. Something to look forward to, ey? Can we ask for anything more than that this year? I sure can't.

 Your first book is: The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow

 The zoom meeting will take place in November. I will post the date here very soon.It will also be posted on Facebook. Thank you for reading this! 

Here is all the info for you to join on November 30th. It's a Monday, but I suspect this will be an all day sort of thing. Drop by as you feel like it. Bring your beads, bring your thoughts, bring yourself.

Here is the link to your new zoom book club for November 30th, Monday, starting at 10:00am mountain time going for at least 5 hours:Kinga Nichols is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.
Topic: Kinga's Book Club
Time: Nov 30, 2020 09:00 AM Pacific Time (US and Canada)
Meeting ID: 813 3796 7320
Passcode: 612921
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Sunday, March 1, 2020

Nevermore Necklace

 Nevermore was created as a special project for my  beady friends who come to take my classes in record breaking numbers year after year at Bead Soup. Bead Soup is a lovely bead store located in the Baltimore area. Last year I made these fine beady friends Baltimore blue crabs that came in blue boy and Old Bay Seasoning colorway. For this July's classes a Poe themed piece was in order. It's not an easy task to construct a bead embroidered raven. Black is black and without contrast, the outcome can be a fine piece in person and a hell of a thing to take pictures of. Like black dogs, black beadwork is the hardest to photograph.
 Of course one still needs to consider wearability and innovation. If I just stick with the same approach year after year and do the same thing that we have done with the crab, but make a raven, that would get boring. So I was going to stray from a figurative representation and chose a more symbolic approach. The laser cut wood ravens and photograph of Poe I have painstakingly covered in glow in the dark paint that only shows in the dark, added glitter and about five layers of resin on each piece.
 I added a taxidermy eye that is very much like a raven's eye to be the center of the composition, and used the same glittery blues that I applied to the raven's wing throughout the project. Think light catching raven wing's that looks bluish black. Combine this with matte and shiny blacks, purple and yellow. That's the limited palette I chose for this piece. As to the shape; I was going for movement of wings. So much so that the first time you see this piece, the portion left and right of the eyeball should appear to be wings in flight. The direction of my beadwork emphasizes this movement. Upon closer inspection you will see the two ravens facing each other, but first they appear to be stylized wings in flight.  The tassel at the bottom of the necklace adds more movement too and its jet black brings the blues and purples into balance.
 Here is how it fits on me. My neck is 14 inches wide, the necklace of course can be made much bigger and somewhat smaller too just by sizing the leather cord different. I did not want to make it heavier feeling by the addition of beads on the rope portion,therefore I kept it easy peasy, simple and relatively light feeling to support the feeling of flight the rest of the composition takes on.
Here is Poe's skull and the two ravens glowing in the dark. The glow in the dark paint does show up, but of course you have to charge it under a light first. Still; it's an unexpected nifty touch, I think. See you all at Bead Soup in July!