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

Exploding PodCast BeadaLong, Day 4

24 bead casting pod row 5 blue and gold with red
the 5-Round PodCast Bead, detail

For reasons of real-time excitement, I’ve had a few requests to hold a day so a couple of  beading groups can catch up with us, so we’ll Deconstruct tomorrow,  I’ll put up a start-to-finish video here of the entire process, incorporating the suite of questions we’ve had on the basic processes, and then on Friday I’ll do a live Facebook video as well so I can take questions.

Please add any of your own technical questions or ideas to this comment thread, and I will be sure to cover them. I’ll also be available over the weekend to answer questions and chat about Deconstruction.

What do you think of these beautiful fan-style illos that Karen Beningfield created for the PodCasts? I just love the form for showing the whole progression, from center ring through outside edge. Tell me what you think about this style of showing a slice of the whole. Is it clear to you?

24 bead casting pod row 14 blue and gold

the entire Exploding Set, 14 rounds, detail

Also, I added an illustration of the Spine to yesterday’s post, to clearly show the three rounds. In my Spine, I alternated red and orange for the round shown in red here, because I like to have counting markers, but it’s nice and easy to see that it is one line in the drawing if it is all red.

24 bead casting spine only 2
the three Flat Peyote rounds of the Casting Spine before Deconstruction

The drawing above is just to isolate the first three rounds of the Spine for viewing – we won’t take it off of the Wave until it’s finished with the final Stitch-In-The-Ditch round. See you tomorrow! I’m excited. The full PDF pattern will be released next week, free to all.

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.

25 comments on “Exploding PodCast BeadaLong, Day 4

  1. Kim
    April 28, 2019

    I have some nymo questions as I usually use Fireline.
    What size Nymo do most people use?
    What is the difference between Nymo on the bobbin vs Nymo on the spool?
    I like having a selection of colors for thread.

    • katemckinnon
      April 28, 2019

      I like Nymo B in brown, and I also like it in red, but the two threads at “B” are very different, the red is noticeably thicker.
      Nymo on the bobbins is terrible thread. It is literally the bobbin thread, uncoated, tangly, yuck.
      Nymo from the CONES is heaven. Coated, beautiful, lovely to sew with.
      I get mine from Fire Mountain, but sometimes you find it elsewhere too.

  2. Sharon M
    April 23, 2019

    Apologies if this is getting ahead, but I am thinking about the end product that is not just a curly or continuous form. Now that I have the wavy form off the podcast bead, I realized I am searching for ways to finish it off. Can you consider showing us ideas for closures to make bracelets/bangles and necklaces. Suggestions for findings and closures would be of great interest to me. Thanks Kate. You’re the best!

    • katemckinnon
      April 23, 2019

      Oh definitely, that is part of the Pattern Book but I will show a couple of finished things soon. The second Exploding PodCast Set is coming next, though, and then a Rick-Rack creation Facebook Live this Friday. Most of these things are previews of the Pattern Book to get people making up their own ideas from the pieces and parts before we show them what we did.

    • katemckinnon
      April 24, 2019

      I sure will, Sharon!

  3. anzacheryl
    April 22, 2019

    Kate, I have been beading away on road trips, and came back to check in and read and realized that all I have been doing is increase rounds on my wave…I am in row 5, should I deconstruct back and do a point at row 4, or can I just continue and do a point row as my last row? I am thinking I will just have larger hexagons?

    I started a peyote necklace years ago that must have had about 200 Beads to start and was worked as a long piece, I was not happy at all as my peyote didn’t lay nicely – I already realize that the spine will be perfect for starting the necklace over again…or even the wave I’d i need that many beads. I did the first podcast and have a rickrack bracelet that I love! Yes, I know, I need to upload a picture. …..thank all of you for all this work.

    • katemckinnon
      April 24, 2019

      Yes, Cheryl, if you have only been doing herringbone increase, then that is a Rick-Rack, not a Wave. It’s OK! Just put your Wave on top of that. Finish 6 rounds of it first, though, because that is the smallest segment I like to take off.

      • anzacheryl
        May 7, 2019

        Thanks Kate. Now searching for the Stitch In The Ditch instructions. I figure they are here somewhere. Just finished my last pink-orange set! I wore my rickrack bracelet from the first podcst the other day and still get lots of comments. I need to progress to a fortune teller or something similar that has 3 dimensions! I have been in Cellini land for awhile….. doing this pod has been so much fun

  4. Shirley Moore
    April 11, 2019

    I’m having such fun with this beadalong! I loved making the pod, and am working on finishing up the spine. Karen’s illustration is very different than what I’m used to seeing, but just like the terminology, it is just something to get used to and all will be good.

  5. Lisa
    April 11, 2019

    Hi Kate. I couldn’t wait, so I cut mine apart alraedy. My method was to use a red thread and stop bead for the detonation point round. Then start a new thread for the rounds that would not fall apart. The red was very easy to see and pick out.

    • katemckinnon
      April 12, 2019

      That works too, but really the entire form could be made from one running thread and still come apart just fine. Congrats on your Deconstruction! Did you Stitch-In-The-Ditch on the Spine BEFORE you took it off of the Wave? That is really helpful.

  6. jinx6393
    April 11, 2019

    The illustrations are overwhelming at first, but in conjunction with photos of actual beadwork and a contrasting color scheme I find them very useful. Thanks for hosting this bead-a-long to keep us in the loop.

  7. Janice Rubin
    April 11, 2019

    Okay. I must admit that I am having a very hard and slow time catching on! I am going to assume that when the book comes out, I can sit with it and continually study it till I “get it” and catch up!! Thank you for these wonderful designs! I am NOT going to give up!

    • katemckinnon
      April 11, 2019

      I’ll have a nice video for you here a bit later. I like it that you are trying to dive in! We actually do have video on our YouTube page already for both PodCast Beads and for Deconstruction, so you might want to catch up on those techniques if they are new to you.

      Here is one of several that would be good:

  8. Katerina Wolter
    April 11, 2019

    Hi Kate, The illustrations are fine, I found the photos even better like the one of the wave! But Ihave to imagine the end product in order to create a pattern, it will turn to a bracelet, a necklace or something else_? Thanks Katerina

  9. Ruthann
    April 11, 2019

    I love the top illustration it is very clear and easy to see where the increases are. The second one is a bit overwhelming.I think building on previous rounds in color while graying out completed rounds would help me keep track of where I am in the diagram. Thanks for your (and your team) effort.

    • katemckinnon
      April 11, 2019

      I love that tactic, Ruthann, and it is one we are using in the book. It’s good to see the whole thing at once as well, of course. Thanks for your comment!

  10. Friderike Strassmann
    April 11, 2019

    Hi Kate, my little piece is sitting concentrated and ready for deconstruction (hopefully not destruction ;)) on my table. It is so fun to do it and i am looking foreward to step 4.
    May i say: The illustration looks nice and different, but to me it was not so easy readable straight away, to be honest. But thanks to my experience i could read it, although it takes more concentration to figure out the perspective distances between the beads. It is more unusually to the eye, especially where the segments come together, showing and dividing the Increase-, Fill- and Point-Rounds.
    But never mind, flexibility will improve my skills. Anyway big Thankyou and all the best! Friderike

  11. Donna Dickt
    April 10, 2019

    Illustrations are great. Very helpful. Thank you!

  12. Janet Sherman
    April 10, 2019

    These instructions and illustrations are great
    I’m caught up and ready to go with a squiggly segmented form that keeps turning into triangles, squares, etc in my hands Reminds me of some of the fossils in the Burgess Shale.

    Could you post more information on that little, sharp scissors? I don’t think my good beading scissors are sharp enough at the tip to do the deconstruction.

  13. Sharon Manewitz
    April 10, 2019

    i like the illustrations. when they are read in conjunction with the text of your previous explanations, the explanations are less daunting… at least for me as i was having trouble following them at first. i so looked forward to my daily installment from you, Kate,

    • annaparadox
      April 10, 2019

      This illustration really works for me, too. I felt immediately more confident about stitching the form when I saw it. Good idea, and thanks!

    • katemckinnon
      April 10, 2019

      Thank you, Sharon! We’re having such fun with this one. Hugs to Mark.

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