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In other news, you know that strange thing you see in some Egyptian paintings hanging down from goddesses' armpits, or occasionally behind their backs? I've finally found out what it is: a peculiar counterweight to a heavy bead necklace. Apparently the object in question was, amongst other things, associated with potency and fertility. Yep, I could see how people could make those associations.

ETA: Halfway decent photos are finally here! I'll try to take even better ones outdoors before I send it off. Click on the thumbnails for huge images.

Date: 18 Sep 2010 09:27 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jelazakazone.livejournal.com
Love it. But now I'm feeling like that orb on top of her head needs some decoration:D But that's probably just me.

Date: 18 Sep 2010 11:29 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] arkady.livejournal.com
Nope, the aten disk is always blank in Egyptian art. It would be completely wrong to decorate it.

Date: 18 Sep 2010 11:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jelazakazone.livejournal.com
Yeah, I figured it was something like that:D

Date: 19 Sep 2010 08:50 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] elettaria.livejournal.com
Erm, it IS decorated! But subtly. I did a row of really tiny translucent seed beads (size 15 - the larger the number with seed beads, the smaller the size) in a colour called "antique ginger" outlining the orange sun, and then there are about a dozen silver-lined burnt orange seed beads (size 11, the size I've been using elsewhere for seed beads) forming a roughly circular shape about 1/2" in from the edge. So it has some sparkle, and I needed to put something in the middle to stop it from puffing out oddly, but I'm just echoing the original shape, nothing too patterny.

I'm quite pleased with the way the dress came out. The beads are size 15s again, little translucent pale blue beads like chips of ice, and it's just enough to make the dress shimmery without standing out. This is definitely a Goddess With Bling.

Date: 19 Sep 2010 11:56 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jelazakazone.livejournal.com
Oooh, I so wish I could see this in person. Pictures do not do it justice.


Date: 5 Jan 2012 11:16 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Thanks for contributing. It's helped me undsertand the issues.

Date: 18 Sep 2010 11:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] virginiadear.livejournal.com
Omigosh, that is beautiful!
Simply, beautiful.

It draws me back again and again to look at it, to *experience* it, even though it's a cyber experience, to sort of drink it in and to be lost in it. It's kind of a meditative experience, you know?

Simply beautiful. Beautiful.

Date: 18 Sep 2010 11:33 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] arkady.livejournal.com
It's gorgeous; it really does capture the feel of Egyptian wall art - and the richness of the colours are absolutely perfect - they really give the feel of faience and tempura. The beaded stars worked at very well indeed!

The whole thing would not have been out of place stylistically at the Great Temple in Karnak, I feel. :-)

What are you going to do with it when it's completed?

Date: 19 Sep 2010 09:01 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] elettaria.livejournal.com
Aww, bless you, what a lovely thing to say! It was a funny thing with the colours. I started off with the Hoffman Challenge fabrics, which have to make up 50% of the quilt. In some ways they're ideal: there's a good strong turquoise, there are two fabrics with very typically Egyptian lattice patterns, there's plenty of gold metallic which fits right in. However, I found a good site on Egyptian colours (although by that point I'd been picking out the right colours anyway from memory, all those hours in the British Museum when I was 14 evidently paid off) and noticed that the darker blues weren't quite right, they should really have been cobalt and they were a dark form of turquoise. That's pretty much the only way it's slightly out, though, apart from occasional cheating such as when I fell in love with the not-precisely-authentic dark brown and gold fabric for the hair.

The quilt will be going off to Grosvenor Shows for the competition in a few weeks. They take most of the quilts on tour, and while it may or may not be good enough to win a prize it's certainly good enough for the tour, so it will be travelling to quilt shows all over the UK for a year. Then I will try to sell it, which will be easier after all those shows.

Date: 20 Sep 2010 12:00 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] voxwoman.livejournal.com
How much are you looking to get? I want to put dibs on it right now! (I am SERIOUS!!!) Between now and when you get it back from the show, I can probably save enough money for it, too, LOL!

If it doesn't win something, the judges are on crack.

Help help help!

Date: 19 Sep 2010 09:21 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] elettaria.livejournal.com
I forgot to ask everyone the most important bit: should I bead the borders or not?

The plan is to put little pairs of dark green bugle beads in V shapes (alternating which way up they go) every 1 1/2" along the two plain teal lattice border strips, so that the borders get a bit more weight without taking over. Each of those flowers in the border is 3" wide, to give you an idea of scale, and the teal lattice border strips are 1" high. The beads are matte, so they wouldn't catch the light like the shiny ones elsewhere, and I might possibly put little size 15 beads at the end of the bugle beads to neaten them off, depending on how they look. The beading is rather top-heavy at the moment, I'm not sure whether it needs more beading in the borders to balance this all out or whether I should leave it as it is. Any thoughts?

I'll try to do some proper close-ups at some point, I know the photos are a bit crappy. I think I need to reset the dpi or whatever it is, my photos used to come out far larger and more detailed, though I have absolutely no idea how to do this. Thankfully the manual is available online, though right now I can't find the right bit in it. Actually, I really need to learn how to use my camera properly!

Re: Help help help!

Date: 19 Sep 2010 10:57 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] elettaria.livejournal.com
Right, better photos are now up, look at the two thumbnails at the bottom of the original post. The close-up one, if clicked on again to show the larger version, is good enough that not only can you see the beads on the headdress, but you can even still see faint smudges of chalk where I marked it up.

Opinions on the border beading dilemma?

Re: Help help help!

Date: 19 Sep 2010 11:59 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jelazakazone.livejournal.com
I think I would leave the borders plain; no beading. It seems right to put the bling on the goddess and leave the rest unshiny:)

So, you are not entering this in the Hoffman challenge?

Re: Help help help!

Date: 19 Sep 2010 12:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] elettaria.livejournal.com
Oh yes, definitely. It's the UK version of the Hoffman Challenge. The US one has slightly different rules.

Re: Help help help!

Date: 19 Sep 2010 12:15 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jelazakazone.livejournal.com
Oh shew. I was thinking how disappointing it was that you did all this work and then you weren't going to enter it.

Re: Help help help!

Date: 19 Sep 2010 12:57 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] elettaria.livejournal.com
I wouldn't have been getting so stressed about deadlines if I wasn't going to enter it! Grosvenor are the people running the UK Hoffman Challenge, and I think most of the UK quilt shows, so when I said that I'm sending it to Grosvenor I meant that it's going off to the Hoffman competition. Sorry for the ambiguous phrasing. It's my first time entering a quilt into a competition, I'm really excited about it.

I think I should definitely keep anything shiny out of the borders, but I'm still not sure whether some very subtle matte beads would work. I'll lay them out once they turn up and see how the look. I tried them out with some green beads, which were pretty good but the colour was a smidgen too olivey and they were shiny. Shiny dark blue twisted bugles in 6mm were too dark, but oddly some 4mm straight shiny beads of the sort they tend to call black/rainbow weren't bad at all. So I think matte dark green with AB coating is a good compromise. The little V shapes fit nicely, it's yet another typical Egyptian pattern, though hopefully no one will notice that I cut the lattice fabric for the borders badly and I wouldn't be able to get the beads on exactly the same bit of fabric pattern every time. Here's a photo I took with a few beads scattered in roughly the right positions. The little black/rainbow beads are at the bottom side of the border, and the green 6mm beads are at the top side.

Re: Help help help!

Date: 19 Sep 2010 01:29 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jelazakazone.livejournal.com
Excellent. I'm excited for you:)

I'm torn about the beads on the borders because I have recently fallen completely in love with beading, but there is a part of me that thinks that it honors Isis more to have the beads be around her and only her, if that makes sense.

I don't think it would look worse to put more beads on though.

Re: Help help help!

Date: 19 Sep 2010 01:33 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] elettaria.livejournal.com
I'm finding that the more I stare at the photo, the more it looks OK as it is. I was worried that having beading mostly in the top part of the centre was unbalanced and it needed beading in the border to balance it, but I'm not so sure now. Beading is terrible for losing perspective, you're staring at something 2mm across. Also, as you say, I have fallen completely in love with beading and keep on wanting to put on beads, not because the quilt needs them, but because the beads are beautiful and I want to show them off, which is the wrong way around, of course.

Re: Help help help!

Date: 19 Sep 2010 02:07 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jelazakazone.livejournal.com
Yes, exactly. I know that feeling.

beading and q-snap frames

Date: 19 Sep 2010 05:44 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jelazakazone.livejournal.com
Hey, speaking of beading, I was just at my local big fabric/quilting store and I found Q-snap frames! I got an 8X8 one. I hope it's a reasonable size.

Re: beading and q-snap frames

Date: 19 Sep 2010 06:25 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] elettaria.livejournal.com
Er, not really!

Re: beading and q-snap frames

Date: 19 Sep 2010 07:19 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] elettaria.livejournal.com
And wasn't that an unhelpful answer. Sorry, I was on the phone and typing hastily. I think I've done embroidery with an 8x8, but for beading I prefer the frame to be as big as possible. You don't want to be placing it over previous bits of beading, and you don't want to have to interrupt your bit of beading. I generally use an 11x17 for quilting, but for beading I added a couple of extensions so I think the final size was more like 14x20, though I can check later.

My aunt who paints says that you cannot judge from photos, I need to lay the quilt out on the floor and decide. So I'll see how I feel when the beads show up on Tuesday or so. I find photos useful because quite apart from the beading, you always focus on small bits when quilting too, and it's handy for gaining perspective. Still, at least I know it looks good now, and I'm probably choosing between two good options, it's not as if I'm likely to spoil the quilt.

Re: beading and q-snap frames

Date: 19 Sep 2010 11:17 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jelazakazone.livejournal.com
Hmm, I have a hoop that is the standard size and I hated it. I found it unwieldy. I think that between the hoop and the Qsnap, I should be able to figure something out. I am not beading anything yet, so I'll let you know how it goes once I'm at a place where I can start beading:)

I agree that photos can be helpful to shrink the piece down to give you perspective, but that it's hard to make fine judgement calls from a photo.

I prefer to have the quilt on the wall vertically or have someone hold it up if that's not an option. For some reason, laying the quilt horizontally isn't quite as good. Have I mentioned I love my design wall?:)

And no worries about the previous reply. I realize this is your opinion and I didn't take it personally. I may be totally wrong that this will work for me. If it doesn't work for me, I can always get the next size up.

Re: beading and q-snap frames

Date: 20 Sep 2010 08:39 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] elettaria.livejournal.com
And the nice thing about Q-snaps is that one of them is bound to be useful sooner or later, and you can fit them together to make various sizes. I originally picked mine up from eBay and it includes the smaller ones, and while they don't get trotted out often, they're good when I want to embroider a fairly sturdy quilt top. For some reason, the turtle quilt which was all batiks (denser weave) was fine with a Q-snap, but the Isis quilt has more loosely woven fabric and the Q-snap wouldn't hold well enough for the tension you need for embroidery, so I used a standard 6" round embroidery hoop for that. Of course, this was embroidering onto the quilt top alone. If I'd been embroidering onto the quilt sandwich (presumably there is some point when one wants to do that), a Q-snap would have been fine for anything.

I bead with the Q-snap sitting flat on the table, pretty much, so I don't need as much reach as when I'm quilting. One nice thing about Q-snaps is that if reach is a problem, you can set them up to be long and narrow. Their 11x17 was originally designed for borders, but I find it's ideal because you can get a reasonable amount of quilt in there and the shorter sides means that I can always reach somehow. That one is a generally useful size, I think. There are so many different ways of quilting, I'm sure that there must be as many ways of beading, but beading quilts just isn't discussed as much yet. Do let me know what you end up doing, I'm very curious about all the options here.

One thing I have found is that while Q-snaps are less prone to leaving crease marks, they still do it to some extent. I try to finish a frame's beading that day so that I don't leave the frame on overnight, and by the time I finished the Isis quilt I'd cut little strips of fabric to put between the quilt and the clamps. It still got a bit creased, but it helped somewhat, and it definitely helped protect that sodding delicate gold metallic embroidery.

Date: 21 Sep 2010 01:11 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] elettaria.livejournal.com
Back to beading: the beads turned up and are STUNNING. The bugle beads are the same green as the teal lattice border fabric, with a lovely subtle rainbow coating, but they're matte so it doesn't take over, just adds a bit of variety. The tiny beads are also very pretty. If I were to bead those border strips, I don't think there's enough contrast with the bugle beads for them to show up properly, so I'm looking at beading a zigzag on the binding, as I'd originally planned. It does tie in beautifully with the teal used elsewhere in the quilt, and zigzags are madly authentic, I'm just trying to work out whether the binding is better off staying simple. You do still get a nice bit of contrast between the binding and the teal lattice fabric next to it, as it's a lot darker.

(I have had a ghastly morning which has included trying to sort out the washing machine's having broken down YET AGAIN and the horrifying discovery that a company I didn't know about has been taking money for boiler insurance from me for years, so beading is nice and therapeutic.)

Date: 15 Oct 2010 08:00 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] oregonsurfers.livejournal.com
It is absolutely amazing! You did a beautiful job on it! :)
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