Beading Art


Amador Valley Quilters invited beading artist Thom Atkins to speak and teach. I signed up for the workshop without asking what we would do. Best plan ever.

Atkins, who wrote Beading Artistry For Quilts, lets the fabric and embellishments speak to him while he is working on any given project. He starts with an idea and lets it develop. His kits are created with the same idea in mind – give the student some fabric and beads and see what happens.

What I learned in class

What I learned in class

Atkins actually intended this to be the backing fabric, but it fits perfectly for an idea swimming in my brain for the water project. He accepted my reasoning and let me have fun.

Letting the beads speak

Letting the beads speak

The best part for me during the workshop was learning a new finishing technique – a beaded picot stitch.

Lani Longshore beaded picot

The best part after the workshop was discovering another cache of beads that will fit with this project.

More found treasures

More found treasures

Atkins uses a boatload of beads on each project, and encourages his students to do the same. Since I’m already a proud member of the “if one is good, one hundred is fabulous” club, I feel as if I’ve been given permission to fly after years of walking – on beaded wings, of course.

Luck and wisdom!


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One Response to “Beading Art”

  1. Elaine Schmitz Says:

    As a Piscean, I love this quilt. I prophecy it will win an award.

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