an open source architectural beadwork project from Kate McKinnon and a worldwide team of innovators
This post will look wonky if you are reading it on your phone, or in your email. Click on the link to the post to see it display properly on all devices. I rushed this one together a bit to get you all beading on some of our newest ideas about Hyperbolic Loops, Links and Cycles.
Link to this post on the Book Blog:
For our first bead-along of 2019, I’d like to show you how to make a hyperbolic ring of beads (A HyperLoop) and then either stabilize it as a double chain link or make it into part of a HyperCycle, a design dreamed up by Claudia Furthner and interpreted by Karen Beningfield. (Huge props to Joy Davison, who spent months making hyperbolic rings and disks, counting beads, and making judgment calls about where and how many increases to place for the best hyperbolic fun.)
Look for other applications of this stepped herringbone technique in CGB Volume 1, pages 84-85, where Christina Vandervlist showed us how to use Stepped Decreases to make a Pyramid on top of a Flat Square. (You can make a neat Tetrahedra in this style by starting with a Flat Triangle, too.)
See Stepped Increases also in CGB, Volume II, pages 30-31, where Rebecca Bisgyer used them to control the angle of the skirt on her corset-like bracelet. You can see them here alternating in a one-two pattern, in a dusky blue grey, along the creases of the skirt (click photos to enlarge):
If you have never done stepped increases or decreases, I suggest using a very clear colourway for your first try, so you don’t get confused.
As soon as you understand the shape and nature of the HyperLoop, it will be easy to do in single colours, or subtle shades.
Here is another example of one of Karen’s anemone flower HyperCycles. In this piece, she used gold for the HyperLoops, and called out the increases in black. GLORIOUS, but still confusing for beginners.
So rather than start with a cycle, I’d like to show the HyperLoop to you first alone, so you have an excuse to use separate colours. Let’s make something that looks like the loop below. This HyperLoop has been stabilized with a few extra rounds in the center to make it fun and easy to study.
A 48 bead-center HyperLoop by Kate McKinnon
This little HyperLoop is an easy piece to make. It’s only 7-10 rounds of beadwork (depending on whether or not you reinforce the center) and it’s a simple start. Find a few grams of size 11 Delicas in at least three different colours (I used blue, green, gold and varoius reds), and a tiny spoonful of size 15 rounds (I used bright red). You can make this entire form in round beads too.
First, make a ring of 32 or 48 size 11 beads, alternating red and blue. You can either do a peyote start (this is 64 or 96 beads in a circle, depending on the size you chose) or of course you can cast these Loops off of a Spine or an edge, if you have learned how to do that.
My example above was a 48 bead center ring, but for my step by step example below, I will show the smaller 32 bead start, which is what Karen used to make her Anemone Hypercycle, and Claudia used to make her Space Station, which we will also step out in the book. The process for each Loop is the same, one just has a larger start.
Use soft tension as you bead this loop – HyperThings get spiky and hard to handle if done tightly. Try the 48 bead center first (a 96 bead peyote start) if you are a tight beader.
Please note that this short tutorial is not meant for beginners; you need some working knowledge of peyote stitch and herringbone increases to do the Loop. Don’t mind the photo quality – these are just placeholder shots for me.
Round 1 and 2, peyote start: String 64 or 96 beads (whichever size you are doing) in a ring. Weave through a dozen beads or so to stabilize the thread, and exit at a blue bead. Keep a bit of a tail to weave in later.
Round 3: single bead peyote, alternating blue and gold
Round 4: single bead peyote, all blue
Round 5: single blue beads alternating with two-drop placements of gold beads
Round 6: single blue peyote alternating with single gold beads placed in between increase beads. Putting in these single beads is the difficult part with peyote starts; try flexing the ring if you have trouble, and they should snap mostly into place.
Round 7: single bead peyote, all green. This round will be very ruffly.
Round 8: single green beads alternate with 2-drop gold increases. This finishes the outer edge of the basic HyperLoop. Reinforce the edge with another pass of thread, and move your needle down to the center ring.
Rounds 9 and 10: ZERO, ONE or TWO passes of small size 15 round beads will stabilize the center – use two if your tension is very loose, one if it’s medium, none if it’s tight. Weave in your thread, and play with the HyperLoop. It can be a double potato chip, or a wavy ring.
After you complete one size, a 32 or 48 bead center, consider making the other size as well so you can feel the difference. Next post will show you how these HyperLoops make HyperCycles and amazing infinity loop chain links.
Feel free to add additional rounds to your HyperLoop, because yes, that is a great Exploding Set too, and we will show it in the book that way. You can build big and explode the thing into many rings….
(Please note that these are new projects; we discovered them in the past few months and wanted to include them in the books. So we are still doing the final illos, and taking the Real Photos. Excuse the quick photos and instructions for this post, but I wanted to get you all started playing with us – HyperLoops are our Everything!)