Sunday, 14 February 2016

February 2016 Bead Journal Project

Here is my February bead journal piece.

It took me a long time to find inspiration for this. I don’t really like February; it’s cold and wet here in the UK and spring feels a long way off. All I could think of was hibernation and things asleep under the earth. Then a few days ago I was picking my daughter up in the evening and we saw the most amazing moon. It was a tiny sliver of a new moon but instead of being ‘C’ shaped it was lying on its back in a ‘U’ shape and you could just faintly see the outline of the whole circle like this:

The next day I read some information about February being the month of the Celtic festival of Imbolc, which is all about celebrating the transition between winter and spring. This linked to a page on the Rowan tree which is apparently, among other things, a symbol of transition. It said that rowan is used for divining (although I always thought that was hazel??) and suggested that this could be linked with finding one’s own spiritual path. So then everything took a bit of a New Age turn and suddenly my February piece was born!

The moon in my piece is fairly obvious, and I think the two white curly lines must be symbolic moon beams seeking out my spiritual path(!). The section at the bottom represents all the bulbs and seeds under the earth waiting to grow.

I’ve used a piece of silk which I dyed using a natural dye. It's either the laurel berry, the walnut or the cherry leaf as they came out almost the same colour! The crescent moon is made from silk dyed with rosemary but you can hardly see it as there are lots of beads on top. These beads came from a necklace which I think belonged to my mum and in my head they are some kind of fresh water pearl but I might have imagined that and they might be synthetic.

Although I had prepared three pieces ready for the bead journal project I ended up using the piece I’d planned for February in January and the other two didn’t feel quite right for February so I’ve saved them for later. I couldn’t be bothered to get my sewing machine out so I made this square by hand which was a mistake as it’s rather out of shape and I didn’t get the padding right but never mind. It’s all about the process after all and the finished piece is not so important.  

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