an open source architectural beadwork project from Kate McKinnon and a worldwide team of innovators

Off to Boston again

It’s been a few months of intense work on our new forms, starts, and Exploding Sets. We’ve made some fantastic progress, and are well on target for an early Spring release of the CGB Pattern Book.

I’m in the middle of a massive photoshoot right now, and thought I’d share a few images. So much more to come soon. I’ll be at MIT for all of January, teaching the IAP classes (which are almost full!) and working on book pages and pattern cards.

Also- I still have a few spaces in my private sessions, January 7-8 and 23-24. These are intimate classes, working deeply on new ideas.
Enjoy. And please stay tuned!Kim Van A Pierced Arrow 2 web

Above and below, two different colourways of Kim Van Antwerp’s Pierced Arrow bracelet, a piece that can be started off of anything with a point (including your collar) and has its own hidden self-closure. This piece will not only be featured in the Pattern Book (in our Cloning section) but we will have Pattern Cards for sale for it in the Shop very soon, showing a variety of interpretations of the form.

Kim Van A Pierced Arrow Web

See? You slip the point of the arrow into the slit, and it stays softly, weightlessly on your wrist. Kim’s work is fantastic, and she is the Art Director and one of the key players on our Design Team for the upcoming CGB Pattern Book. Have you pre-ordered yet?

Below, one of LeAnn Baehmann’s excellent themed Rick-Rack Bangles. On the photo table I have one that is like a box of crayons, a cow, a maze…fantastic work.

LeAnn Baehmann monarch web

Below, a piece from Tina Hauer that resembles, but is not, built on a Möbius strip. Dustin and I have been doing a lot of work with building and splitting Möbius pieces. The potential is insane, but there are secrets still to unlock…

Tina Hauer webBelow, a small family portrait (the actual size of the family is infinite) of one of Dustin’s Casting Models, and a few things that were once attached to it. The little Element is made from a zipped-up All-Wing, and is inspired by a piece made by Kate Stern at the last Seed Bead Summit in Tucson.

Family portrait Casting Model web

Dustin Casting Model

Above is the actual Casting Model, with a soon-to be separated rider (a colour-blocked All-Wing). See the big yellow beads? Those are Detonation Points. When we cut the thread holding them on, we also cut the thread holding the All-Wing onto the Model.  Below, the starter Flat Peyote Triangle.

Dustin Counting Triangle 10 20 30Normally, we build this starter in sections so as to have more pieces to play with, but this particular triangle is communicative; the red dots are our notation. Dustin marked Rounds 10, 20 and 30 with 1, 2 and 3 red beads, and called out Round 36 with 3 and 6 beads along the edge. The red dots at the spines that announce the information are Dustin’s way of saying “Signal Pending”.  When I code notation into a piece, I tend to just start writing, but I like his idea.

Below, a winged Greenie from Ina Hascher, beading from the Netherlands. I adore greens and don’t use them like this enough.

Ina Hascher web

Below, an exploration of Winged form by Wendy Ellsworth.

Wendy Ellsworth web

And a very clever brooch pin attachment crafted onto a Rick-Rack Flower by Ina Hascher, also beading from the Netherlands.Ina Hascher clever attachmentBelow is one of my own Exploded Sets, both before and after. This one was made with our new Dissolving Suture, so it came neatly apart in water, no thread cutting required. We are currently filming a CGB Magic Show, and it strongly features the dissolving thread.

Kate McKinnon Exploding Set copyYou see how the points of the triangle can be used to start things like Pierced Arrows?
Kate McKinnon Exploding Set

Dustin is winding up neat little bobbins of Dissolving Suture to share in all of our kits, never fear. And also bobbins of real Nymo, from the cones, so you can try them. We are making a variety of bead mixes, including our full Pattern Book Colourway. Keep an eye on the Shop.

Dustin winding bobbins

About katemckinnon

Kate McKinnon has devoted herself to the study of how things are done, and how they could be done better. Find her at or on some city street, walking fast, smiling at strangers.

8 comments on “Off to Boston again

  1. Linda Wahl
    December 25, 2015

    Totally amazing and beautiful! Have a question. On page 14 of Volume II, the Geometric Rope and a link to the pattern is mentioned. I could not locate this pattern or any instructions. Could you direct me please? Thanks!

    • katemckinnon
      December 25, 2015

      Hi Linda! It hasn’t been published yet, it’s marked for the next book. And it’s going to be awesome. But really, geometric rope is very easy. For example, just start a peyote tube of any diameter. Then, after a half inch (or however long you want your tube sections) place 3-5 increases. Create a triangle, square, pentagon, then decrease back to tube size, continue on as tube for another half inch or whatever, make a new shape.

      Stay tuned for a couple of killer patterns.

      • Linda wahl
        December 25, 2015

        Thanks!!! My next experiment.

  2. Silvia Silberberg
    December 22, 2015

    Dear Kate, Thank you for the update. Great work, wonderful pictures.


  3. jigsawcube
    December 22, 2015

    Amazing and inspiring I think I might use my few days to work on the piece I started emulating the one you gave me it has been a work In Progress for too long. Will send you some pics soon


    Sent from my iPhone


    • katemckinnon
      December 22, 2015

      I’m not sure who this is, “jigsawcube” isn’t really helpful. : )

  4. Diana Mulloy
    December 22, 2015

    So amazingly beautiful!

  5. Elena Darden
    December 22, 2015


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This entry was posted on December 22, 2015 by .
December 2015
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