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

Publication update, new releases

Hello, beautiful beaders around the world!

It’s time at last for us to begin releasing the radically new work that will fill the upcoming three books. In the next month and year, this blog will be flowing with all of our new technical ideas, solutions, and unbelievable shortcuts for making complex pieces from simple starts.

kim-machine with dinos

We’ve solved the questions that we began with, and they were difficult to crack. Each solution is fundamental and will change your beading life. We’ve also made some very complicated and beautiful new things.

The book projects have now crossed the three-year mark, which is incredible. Unreal. Unheard of.

Until the books are published, there is no funding for me at all, so no one is more eager than I to complete them. The pre-order sales were at half-price, including special items, and the early orders (including foreign orders) included free shipping.  We will send out pre-orders first, as soon as we go to press.

CGB is open source, so the only reason to buy the books is to have them, and the full patterns (and they are gorgeous). Technical ideas will be released for free on the blog, here, and on Facebook, and in person when I give talks.

We appreciate your support, your energy, your beading hands, and your forward thinking.



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.

61 comments on “Publication update, new releases

  1. Lisa
    February 19, 2018

    Hello Kate!
    Any new updates on the publishing of the pattern book?

  2. Barbara Marsh
    November 29, 2017

    I pre-ordered the latest books because I not only loved the previous ones but applaud your generous attitude to sharing ideas and wanted to support the project. The fact that I will eventually get to own the books is an added bonus. Looking forward to the day I get to hold the physical object but enjoying seeing the evolution too. Thank you for sharing your ideas and enthusiasm.


  3. freebird7100
    November 4, 2017

    I have to say that when I ordered the books I just knew about them from the previous books that I bought. I was intrigued and inspired by the K-cycle that I made in a facebook group. I saw that there was a chance to get in on the new books I felt that it was so worth it! Many beaders sell on commision and understand the time it takes to go from start to finish. For the rest they just gotta be patient. Take care and keep beading on.

  4. erinkkenny
    October 31, 2017

    Obviously my message glitched. The real message (above it) is obscenely long, but the short of it is “we LOVE you”

  5. erinkkenny
    October 30, 2017

    Dearest Kate:

    I found this project just a couple of months ago and, geek girl that I am, immediately bought an electronic copy of book 1. I can tell you it has brought me great joy! My only regret was that I didn’t have the money to buy book 2 and, by the time I did, it didn’t seem to be available on the website. (not complaining – I check every couple of days and will buy it as soon as it’s available again)

    While I love to bead, my health has been so fragile for the past 2 years that I haven’t done much of it. Finding your website gave me the motivation to work on beading again, on my good days, which has had the effect of lifting my depression, giving me more good days (I am physically ill, but being sick for a long period of time becomes very depressing, which just feeds into not feeling well all on its own). My doctors are now encouraging me to bead as much as possible. On the days that I’m not up to it, I at least have the motivation to READ about beading – a joy in itself. Your book is intellectually challenging, something I have missed since I had to stop working 18 years ago.

    Another special thing about your books – my husband has no interest in beading (beyond the fact that it makes me happy, something he supports very strongly), but ADORES mathematics of every kind, so your book has actually given us common ground to discuss. He finds your work fascinating.

    THANK YOU for all of your effort. THANK YOU for making the project Open Source (we’re both software designers, so we get the concept). Every minute of effort you put into the project feels like a very personal gift to us.

    I’m so sorry that anyone has been giving you a hard time about timelines. I will continue to check back every few days to see when I can purchase an electronic copy of Book 2, and when I can pre-order the 3 new books (they’re currently on my Christmas list, but now I’m putting a note on it so that my family won’t be frustrated if they can’t order them for me). Money is very tight for us (we’re both on disability – my husband for mental health issues), but I will be buying ALL of the books electronically as soon as they are available and, now that I have seen book 1 (I actually got to see a physical copy at BeadFX last month!) I will be saving up to buy physical copies of everything.

    Sometimes it seems crazy that I’m buying books that are somewhat above my current beading level, but I’m working at learning the stitches and processes (and have met some lovely ladies here in Toronto who have taken me under their wing) and I think everyone needs something to work towards. Besides, the intellectual challenge is good for me (and motivates me all on its own). Book 1 has also introduced me to the work of some others (like Jean Power), giving me even more to read.

    So, without asking when I can throw more money at you (looking forward to the e-copy of book 2 going back up to purchase, as well as the other books to pre-order), is there somewhere online I can look to learn more about how the project started and where it’s going? If not, I can wait patiently.

    Is there any way I can help? There are far more experienced beaders than I, but I worked not just as a software designer, but also a technical writer.

    Thank you.

    Erin Kenny (in Toronto, ON Canada)

    • Donna
      November 1, 2017

      In the famous words of my late father: “anything worth wanting is worth waiting for”. Do your best and take your time, love the first two volumes and eagerly await number 3.

    • erinkkenny
      December 13, 2017

      As excited as I was when I wrote this long winded fangirl gush, I’m happy to wait until the work is ready and you are ready to show it to us.

      Take all the time you need. Take the time you personally need to heal.

      We will be here waiting (moderately) patiently wen everything is done.

  6. Helen
    October 30, 2017

    I am a total newbie to this group. I am inspired by your commitment and willingness to share your wealth of knowledge. A lady working at Birdtail Beads in Bellevue Washington showed me her store copy of your first two books and I immediately set out to find them. They will give me more than enough to learn while I wait happily for the next one.

    • katemckinnon
      October 30, 2017

      Helen, welcome!
      I’ll send you an email to catch you up on digital copies and such-

  7. cathirosengrenart
    October 29, 2017

    Whenever it comes thr wait will be as insignificant as the book is significant.

    Love Cathi

  8. Amanda Taylor
    October 29, 2017

    With your shop closed, where can I pre-order? I want to support your journey.

    • katemckinnon
      October 30, 2017

      Hi, Amanda – thank you so much! It will re-open soon. I find that it becomes unmanageable if I take too many pre-orders; we must be responsible for tracking each one of them. As soon as we go to press, the books will go for sale again.

  9. Carol W. Jones
    October 29, 2017

    I know it will be fantastic and worth the wait.

  10. sleeweppner
    October 29, 2017

    Hi.  I preordered but I am now in hospice ns chemo wrecked my sight soooooooo, would you be open to donating my order to maybe someone who really want it but is strapped for cash?Thank YouSandra Weppner aka Sandy

    • katemckinnon
      October 29, 2017

      Sandy, you are so sweet, and I have done so. Tight hugs to you, and thank you for your generous spirit and for beading with us for years. Safe journeys, and may we meet again, across the hypar.

  11. Lorraine Wolak
    October 27, 2017

    Thanks for keeping us (those who know, trust & love you) informed. I know some of the work that happens during research & design. I know that you are detail oriented. I know that one day I’ll get a surprise in my mailbox & the time I waited will be insignificant.

  12. Capitola Bradshaw
    October 27, 2017

    So sorry you are being rushed and harassed! Those people don’t deserve your wonderful books!

  13. Jann Muhlhauser
    October 27, 2017

    i’m a small cog in a very large wheel but wanted to add my voice to the others about the wait being worth it. over the years, i’ve found that i actually enjoy making non-jewelry pieces more than making jewelry. i love the idea of what you’ve been doing, and while the wait is hard, i know that it will be worth it all in the end. thanks for everything you’re doing to teach and inspire us and in the process grow my beading experiences. cyber hugs from WA state, Jann

  14. susan powell
    October 27, 2017

    Although it does seem to me it has been a long time for the new works to be released I have to admit I really don’t know what the timeline for a project like this would look like in reality. I do know that your occasional updates give me assurance that you are working hard on the project and will complete it. However, the other result of the updates is to excite me and make me impatient to see it! So although I am feeling like I want to see this quickly, I am assured by your communications and updates that this will be worth the wait!

  15. Laura Squires
    October 27, 2017

    It’s not so much the book but being part of this project that inspires me. I really don’t care when the book gets done. I love how I’ve grown to understand the concepts you’ve laid out freely. How it’s changed the way I make things not just Bead things. It’s the exploration into color and form. Thanks Kate. Keep on going

  16. Christina Porter
    October 27, 2017

    Love you! The journey has been the best.

  17. Louise Francis
    October 27, 2017

    Good morning from UK. Your work inspires me and in fact got me beading in the first place. I was a chainmailler. Always vowed that ‘the little beads won’t get me’ to my students and customers in the shop. They did. Between you and Jean Power you enriched my life and turned it upside down. I now teach beading. Quite a change around.
    The wait, however long it’s going to be will be well worth it.
    All my love LOUISE

  18. sewfastdesign
    October 27, 2017

    I LOVE this message!!!! My sentiments exactly when ever we are asked about the project! Glad I’m on the same page and giving your project and YOU the time and respect it needs. Sending love! Rose Mary (from La Quinta and the lovely SoCal desert)

    Sent from my iPhone


    • katemckinnon
      October 27, 2017

      You are the BEST, Rose Mary, and man, have you influenced my work with your ideas and your overflowing positivity.
      Huge hugs!!!

  19. Mary Farrugia
    October 26, 2017

    I was saddened to feel your pain. True creators and developers understand the path is never straight and true. After many years of working in scientific research I understand completely and am I awe of what you and your team have achieved.

    Many thanks indeed for all the time and effort to do this. It is all greatly appreciated as you have challenged my thinking about beading.

    All the best for your future endeavours.

    A grateful Mary Farrugia


  20. Andrea
    October 26, 2017

    Think I pre-ordered, but can’t remember. However, the final release of these 3 new gems should give me time to rip out yet another challenging piece using your method so that I will be well primed for the next steps…. and rip-it-up-start-over cathartic experience!

  21. Peggy Houser
    October 26, 2017

    The excitement is mounting. I love love love the books I have and look forward the the next one. I can be very patient as I know how important it is to “get it right”! Thank you so much for all you hard work and dedication to this project.

  22. Cheryl
    October 26, 2017

    Waiting patiently – I’m sure it will be spectacular. Best wishes and many thanks to you and your team. I have been beading for over 10 years and am looking forward to a new challenge.

  23. Peggy Kemp
    October 26, 2017

    Rome wasn’t built in a day… When I start to wonder if the package will arrive before my 5-day retreat over Christmas (that happened with Vol 1 and I had such a great time with it), I pull out Vols. 1 and 2 and am inspired all over again. And the hypars! So much beady goodness to play with already. THANK YOU SO MUCH!

  24. Gill utting
    October 26, 2017

    I would not dream of being a time critic. I have so much admiration for anyone and everyone who makes their life work as a way to encourage us to carry on their good work. Well done to you and all your co workers for putting together your geometric designs. I am so envious because I am unable to cut a straight line let alone a geometric.

  25. Jacqui
    October 26, 2017

    Well said Kate looking forward to getting it and big hugs and love for your kindness in sharing all of these great ideas Jacqui

  26. Stuart Patti
    October 26, 2017

    Many of the beading books on the market today are worthless. We know that what you are working on wil not only instruct but will inspire us to create our own work not just copies of what you teach. This type of work, as represented in Volume I and II take time and love. Thank you for your endurance, talent and dedication. The least we can do is be patient and grateful. Delayed gratification is something one usually acquire with age.

  27. Margaret
    October 26, 2017

    I know they’ll be fantastic once they are in our hands. Do what you do best (think, create) and you’ll have our support.

  28. Janet Gunther
    October 26, 2017

    What comes easy won’t last. What lasts won’t come easy.

  29. Linda Wahl
    October 26, 2017

    Hugs, Kate!!! Good things are always worth the wait!! Glad you are taking your time. 😎

  30. vee2011
    October 26, 2017

    Thank you for all the hard work you’ve put into this project Kate! I’m still amazed by the generosity (both yours and all the other artists’) in sharing your great ideas! I’m thrilled to have been able to participate in the CGB beading evolution! All great things take time and I’m just so happy to explore with you and the CGB team 😊 Best wishes Vee

  31. T Fox
    October 26, 2017

    Thank you for the update!! Getting excited!!

    Brad and Teri


  32. Paula J Clouse
    October 26, 2017

    I have enjoyed this journey { preordered the books} along with the technology and exploring of beading science or the transition of science to beading. I understand why the journey may seem long, but how can you tell science, ” Okay, it’s time to accept the end of the journey!”? I am truly going to both Love receiving my books and mourn the end of this. Such a mix of emotions.

  33. Ruth Bernstein
    October 26, 2017

    Kate, many thanks again for your continued generosity. I think that I purchased a coloring book and maybe something else using pay pal. But somehow I think they cancelled my order through some part of their system that doesn’t complete a purchase and payment when the delivery is too far in the future or something like that. Of course, I am confused, and also that may have discombulated your income expectations, and early purchase assumptions, etc.
    Is your system tracking those kinds of purchases? What is a person to do when that happens?
    Regards, and the best to you and again, a zillion thanks, Ruth Bernstein

  34. Gail Bartle
    October 26, 2017

    Dear Kate, I am a hobby beader, and from the start, your work and research has fascinated me. I am so looking forward to your next publications, whenever they will be ready. You have a vision and way of seeing things to solve problems, that I think is rare, and have opened up a whole new way of developing our beadwork three dimensionally! Thank you for the work you and your world-wide team has put into this project!

  35. karenwdesigns
    October 26, 2017

    Dear Kate, What ever happened to patience? It is so unkind of some people to pressure someone, as gifted as you are, to produce in a snap. I look forward to the new book, but there is still so much to learn from the first two books, I think I can wait. Please know that all your work is appreciated. Thank you for sharing this gift with us. KarenW

  36. Betsy Waterson
    October 26, 2017

    Thank you for the update and for all your thought and work for this book and the previous books. Be good to yourself!! The book will come when it comes and it will be awesomely worth the wait!!

  37. Marilyn Amick
    October 26, 2017

    Kate, I’m so sorry to hear that not everyone is exercising patience at the moment. I know this project only keeps growing and getting better with each passing day, and I’m so happy to have the opportunity to share in your efforts. You have been very thoughtful to check in periodically with status and progress reports. Just know that there are many of us rooting you on and feeling your excitement of discovery throughout this journey.

  38. sleeweppner
    October 26, 2017

    Hi, I pre ordered and unfortunately I cannot bead any longer and I am on hospice.  Please if you can give my items to someone who otherwise could not afford it. Pay it forward.Thank You Sandra Weppner

    • katemckinnon
      October 26, 2017

      Oh, how sorry I am to hear that, Sandra. I will email you privately, and yes, of course, I have a small list of people who would love to continue the work but cannot afford the books. Much love to you, and look for my email. Tight hugs, Kate

  39. Kay
    October 26, 2017

    Well said, Kate! It will be very much worth the wait. I feel fortunate to be involved, even in a small way. Carry on! ❤️

  40. Vicki Abel
    October 26, 2017

    I, for one, will never complain when perfection is the goal! AND, I am pretty sure I preordered, but don’t remember. Can you check?

    October 26, 2017

    Doing what you are doing – creating, writing and revising at the same time can become an endless task. Just one more little clarification, one more rephrase, one more tweak that affects several other sections. It is hard to release a product that you know could be better. But, there comes a day when you have to say ‘enough’.
    I was a manager of technical writers whose goal was to write the user.manuals for all aspects of our computer program. It’s not easy to know when you have to end the endless update. But it has to be done.
    It’s too bad that you have been harassed by those of us so eager to see and use your life work.

  42. Ann Wilson
    October 26, 2017

    Kate, I echo the comment from beestiegirl above, and feel it’s been a privilege to preorder. So from U.K. I say you go girl, we’re here for you when you’re good and ready. 👍

  43. Susan Pelligra
    October 26, 2017


  44. Ruth Wright
    October 26, 2017

    Hi. I certainly understand – and agree with – your sentiments about sharing your work. Because you are so busy creating, I’m reluctant to take up your time, but I do have a question. I pre-ordered the book simply because it looked interesting and I wanted to support you. But after getting your updates, I see that I’m “late to the game” and appear to be missing background information. Could you please direct me to a website or other resource to learn the history of the project and to begin learning basic stitches and processes?

    Thanks Ruth

    Sent from my iPhone


    • katemckinnon
      October 26, 2017

      I would be happy to catch you up, Ruth, check your email!
      Hugs and thanks,

  45. shirley tyderkie
    October 26, 2017

    Kate, you have enlightened my days for the past years, and when I feel down I go back to the basics and start over. How frustrating for you to be harassed. This has been the best thing I have ever done. My table is covered with your books, info, and beads. Who knows what you will inspire next.

  46. Beth Lockhart
    October 26, 2017

    We love you Kate and understand and appreciate all that you do. Step into a horse stance….chin up….chest out ….breathe…. May the sun kiss your cheek as you forge on.

  47. jamielw505
    October 26, 2017

    You go girl! I Can hardly wait for the beautiful book creations, though I am waiting quite patiently. Thank you and all your team. I know it is from love, curiosity and exploration that has driven everyone involved in the project. The books will be a wonderful treasure that I will be honored to own.

  48. beestiegirl
    October 26, 2017

    Dear Kate. I feel privileged to have been included in your roller-coaster journey of discovery, in a tiny way, by virtue of my preorder.
    Carry on 😘

  49. Rev. marilyn Earhart
    October 26, 2017

    Thanks for the update. I know it will be well worth the wait. Thanks for all you do.

  50. Erin Bachrach
    October 26, 2017

    Kate and crew-

    I await patiently for your amazing creation & labor of love. I appreciate your dedication to this project and know that when it is ready, we will all be celebrating with you!

    Sending you much love and good karma 💗

    Erin Bachrach

    Sent from Erin Bachrach


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