This is more of a "how to get started with freeform" instead of a real tutorial. You can find many on the Internet but this is how I started. I am not a freeform beader. So for me, starting with a little structure and control worked a lot better.
Here is the beginning of my freeform bracelet. Notice I used mostly 11's and 15's with some 8's and very few 6's. I kept the first strand free of any larger beads and just did segments of each color. I forgot to 'blend' - so I have a few areas that are blocky. Hopefully I can take care of those when I am ready to embellish.
Here is the second phase. I have added 'bridges' because I want this piece to be looser and notice I am now blending colors from one to another. These 'bridges' are just little half inch to one inch segments of peyote stitched beads coming out from one area and connected somewhere else. If they seem too skinny - just add another row of peyote stitch to that segment only.
Third step was to add picots and ruffles - just here and there - to create a lacier look.
For those of you who took our 'Ruffle' class - this should be easy for you -
just ruffle along a few segments, here and there.
Here is the finished piece. At least I think it is finished.
Bead instructors will tell you the piece will speak to you and tell you when its 'done'.
So far the only 'speaking' I hear is "pick me, pick me, buy me".
So, I'm going to let this sit for awhile, start another piece and see.
If you know peyote stitch - give this project a try.
You do not have to make your item this large.
Try a thinner band for a simple bracelet.
If you want to make it larger without continuing with freeform
- add a couple of larger focal beads, or a vintage button, or a colorful cabochon.
Any questions - email or come into the store - we'd be glad to help. Enjoy!
If you would like more info, Bead Street carries some great beginner, intermediate and advanced books on the subject. And. we also have a great beginner class as well.
Let us know if you are interested - we'll get one scheduled.