Tuesday, March 28, 2017

For the Love of a Bead - Judith Bertoglio-Giffin

  • Judith's name is synonymous with beautiful bead crochet ropes.   I've admired them for as long as I can remember.  Below she talks to us about the love for her mother flowing into one of her many ropes.  She walks us through the making of her freeform 63" necklace using etched beads.  The photography is wonderful.  Have a look at the photo of the custom mix of etched 8's and you may just find yourself looking for some.   The light brilliantly captures the allure of this finish.  Marcia


  • When my Mother was quite ill, I hurriedly flew out to Tucson. I was in such a hurry that I didn't bring anything to keep my hands busy. I finally managed to buy a hank of Czech 11/0 seed beads, a spool of Gutermann Top Stitch thread and a crochet hook. I sat and crocheted beads. It was just calming.




  •   

    My Crayon Lariat started with the unsorted mix of colors and all I could think of was
  • Love running down the thread in a continuous flow. That image has stayed with me all these
  • years. In later years, this necklace became "Native Stripes" and can be found on Amazon.



  • In the Spring of 2014, I fell in love with a bead finish .... Perry Bookstein, (defunct
  • York Beads) imported these etched Farfalles. I couldn't wait to get my hands on as many as I could
  • afford. They looked like something from the depths of an archaeological dig. I just had to try and
  • crochet with them.


  • Oh, I cussed as these just weren't well-behaved beads. Being little barbells, they stuck
  • up, stuck out, got under the slip stitch and sat every which way in the rope. My hands quickly got
  • tired, but it was so worth it.

  • I so loved the colors and finish that I started collecting everything that came in from the Czech Republic in that finish.

  • In between life in general, I started a lariat for myself. Can you see the Love flowing down these etched 8/0 beads? It's taken me 3 years to finish and I got to wear it last week.


  • Do yourself a favor if you are bead crocheting a long rope. Only string about 36" of beads at a time. Just add in new beads and thread when you need to. It saves time and wear on the thread.



  • The main body of my necklace was done in a custom mix of etched 8/0's. 


  • Then I interspersed Knobby sections of other shaped, etched beads. It seemed that I had to wait forever for the 4mm etched fire polish beads.

  • These are some of the beads I used to accent the long rope of 8/0's.
  • The lentils and daggers didn't work for me in this necklace.


  • I didn't use a pattern as this was as freeform as bead crochet can get. I never knew what I was going to string and crochet next. New etched beads just begged to be tried.

  • You can make your own 63" necklace, as it's an excuse to go bead shopping.


  • It was well worth the 3 years it took to gather the beads, string and crochet this rich looking
  • necklace. I can loop it three times around my neck and feel the love of the beads snuggling up.



  • The focal beads are Basha Beads from Barbara Metzger. The necklace is 63 inches long and doesn't have a clasp.

  • For The Love Of a Bead is my journey with these beautiful etched beads and in memory of my mother who is no longer with us. Can you feel the love as each bead slides down the thread and
  • gets crocheted into the rope? I find bead crochet very soothing.

5 comments:

Mary Hunter said...

Judith, I love not only your necklace but love the way you talk about beading love.

Heather Collin said...

Ive only every crocheted 1 rope and hated the fact you were supposed to string aaaall the beads on at once. Now, you have made it more enticing because, I can add new thread and only need to string on smaller sections at a time....thank you!

kmemho said...

I do enjoy bead crochet - sort of... I have tight tension when I'm crochet'ing so it feels like I'm fighting with myself. If the loops are too small then it's hard to get the hook into the next loop - very tight crochet. Any tips on how to "loosen up a little"? Thanks!

Almost Precious said...

Love the rich earthy colors and the texture of this beautiful rope necklace.
I looked for a followers button, since I also have a blogspot blog, but couldn't find one. I would love to have your blog listed in my blog's side bar of my "Favorite Blogs". :)

LoveAndBeads said...

Almost Precious, I believe you can still add the blog to your sidebar even if not following. I will look at the layout and see about adding the following feature. Marcia