Archive | October, 2012

Kumihimo and color

29 Oct

Deciding which colors of beads to use in a kumihimo jewelry piece is sometimes the toughest part. There are various patterns to follow to get your piece to look just right. Sometimes a piece is one color, sometimes two and so on. If using multiple glass seed bead colors for an eight strand piece, try selecting one or two colors that are out of the ordinary. That will make the piece “pop”. For example, in making an eight strand bracelet, we sometimes use several coordinating colors of Magatama seed beads and then one or two vibrant colors of another bead, to stand out. Notice the rust and blue in this otherwise tan and white kumihimo bracelet. We’ve finished this one with an Italian bronze tone button. To see more of our bracelet creations visit us at CAAZandeffect

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Magatama glass seed beads

25 Oct

When we first starting researching which materials we wanted to use for our Kumihimo bracelets, we noticed a longer glass seed bead among the common round glass seed beads. We loved the look. Now if we could find the bead!

We went on a search to find these unique beads in the local stores of San Diego. We quickly learned these beads have several descriptions; dragon tooth, dragon scales, long seed beads, 4×7 Magatama, peanut. It seemed each store had a different name for it. Even calling ahead didn’t work since the Magatama beads are called so many different names if they said they had magatama beads, we would arrive at the store only to find out if was either the wrong bead or they had one or two colors of it.

Next we researched the Internet and lo and behold, there they were. We now order the Magatama beads almost exclusively online. We love the shape, texture and array of colors in these beautiful beads. To view our kumihimo bracelets with Magatama beads…CAAZandeffect

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Difference between kumihimo and macramé

23 Oct

Typically macramé uses four strands of cord where kumihimo usually uses eight strands of cord.

I started doing macramé projects as a teenager. I made bracelets and plant hangers (remember hanging a fern in the corner of the living room inside a rope looking thing? That was macramé!). I used an old cardboard insert from a bolt of fabric to work the cord. I would pin the four strand cord by a knot at the top of the board then work my design down the board using a pattern of a forward or backward number 4. There has been a recent increase in macramé friendship bracelets.

More recently I discovered the more intricate work of kumihimo, an old Japanese technique. Kumihimo uses eight strands of cord and a braiding disk. The patterns change based on the color of cord and the placement of the cord on the disk. The braiding disk has a hole in the center and the finished product hangs from the center. The resulting product can be flat or round, thin or thick depending on the size of the cord.

Our creations can be viewed here…CAAZandeffect

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Kumihimo…here we go!

18 Oct

If you can read this….just know that I am so excited you found it!!! My name is Beth. I’m a wife, mom of two adult sons, and I live in Gilbert, Arizona. I left a corporate job this year to travel, spend time with family and slow down. On one of my trips this year, my sister-in-law Debbie, taught me how to braid beautiful bracelets using the ancient Japanese technique called Kumihimo. I was hooked immediately. The combinations of colors, cording, patterns, finishings, all of it, fascinates me. Together, Debbie and I, are having a great time navigating the social media sites and telling our peeps about our jewelry. I hope you enjoy our creations as much as we enjoy creating them. CAAZandeffect

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