Visit My Website, A Personal Gallery!

Click on Logo Bar Below, to visit my website!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Closing the gap of bead color intensity

My most recent looming is a photographic style, as with many of my designs. This brings to mind something about 'bead color density' that I think could be very useful in looming a pattern.

Looming, or even peyote/brick hand woven stitches, flat with a design, have to consider the bead colors for proper shading. The pattern lies flat and you can acquire your dimension through the bead finishes, not always just through their colors. Here is my latest looming, still on the loom.

I love a 'piano key' pattern. There seems to be many available. However, I think there are more ways to depict this subject matter, then just a 'straight on pattern with rectangles of black and white'. I have to admit, I did struggle with the final design mainly because I do want my designs to be recognizable. My final graphing has this key pad on a chamfer.

The shading was more important now, then if this design was a straight forward look. This shading aspect brings to mind something I want Bead Loomers to keep in mind, when they select their beads or select a pattern to loom. The darkest colors in your bead pallet, are not just the shade/hue, but the finish denotes the difference. Here is a close up, of this piano key pattern, loomed with Delica blacks in 'matte and gloss'.

Notice how the 'gloss black', or an 'Opaque Delica' shows itself darker then the 'matte black'. This equation is the same in every Delica Bead color. The transparent line also loom up darker then an opaque. If you ever used many whites, in one looming, then you would notice the 'clear crystal' offers a darker white, almost gray color, over an opaque white. I do think, however, the darkest has to be the 'opaque' colors, then comes the transparent line and finally the matte finishes.

Keep this in mind, when you are selecting your beads for a pattern, to loom. This will help you define the depth of field, giving your pattern a more photographic feel. You can also use less colors, when the finishes play a large roll!

One more point, about this piano key pattern. I used an 'ivory opaque' for the keys and not a white. When a lighter color bead is loomed next to a darker color, like a bright white next to a black, the lighter color can be overwhelming and too intense or loose it's shading aspect. I feel they become 'unlevel' in density for the pattern. Selecting a darker white, or ivory in this case, you'll close the gap of intensity. The ivory shows white, next to the black, but in a bead cup, you may think it too dark for a 'white piano key'.


  1. Well said, Erin. I am such a color addict. LOL! This is a wonderful explanation. I love how matte and op/transparent play off each other when placed side by side.

  2. Thanks Sue! You are great with color! That's one point I am sure to look for when I see any of your new creations! I still laugh about your phrase that I need a Delica Intervention! LOL!

  3. I love the 3D look of this cuff - you are truly magic!

  4. Thanks Caron! I'm looking forward to see what your loomed designs look like :) !

  5. When you said you were going to do a piano key design, I knew it would be special. I didn't think it would blow me away like this has done! What a fabulous design, a truly artful shot!
    I'm so glad you never stop amazing me with your wonderful eye for detail and the unexpected.
    Can't wait to see how you finish this one.