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

welcome to a new year

Happy New Year to all of you!

We continue to work tirelessly on our next set of pre-releases – digital, print and news-wise. Please check in at our website at any time (or give our blog a “Follow” in the box at lower right) to be the first to find out about all of the new releases, workshop dates, and opportunities.

(Note that all replies to this blog post in your email will attempt to post as public comments. Send all communication, address updates, etc. to me at

A few upcoming announcements: we have a stupendous piece in house from revolutionary bead artist Joyce Scott to show you (she donated it in support of our Fellowships and Scholarships program, and in particular to help fund a sabbatical grant for Sam Norgard) and we plan to offer it for sale this month. I will give this marvel its own post and space on our site this week. The work is two separate pieces, and for scale the standing female figure in red is 16 inches tall. The piece is valued at $38,000, and we are thinking creatively and talking with Joyce about how to both sell the work and to also have it feed the Fellowship program into the future.

Some highlights: we will be resuming our virus-safe retreats and workshops in Savannah, we will have new kits and some really neat merch is coming along with our new release, and some of the original, one-of-a-kind art pieces from the CGB project researchers will be for sale in our shop. We are ready to put the Pattern Book back up for sale, and soon we’ll be taking wholesale orders. More soon.

It would be incredible to have a full staff on this but as of now it remains only me (a volunteer) and Kathryn Shriver (the first CGB Research Fellow) doing it all, so we appreciate your patience. In the spring and summer we look forward to fielding a fully funded sabbatical for Sam Norgard and adding Anvi Shah as a Research Fellow, so we should have a busy and productive 2023.

Thank you for being with us. I would never have followed all of this through for 11 years if I had been going it alone. The strength of the team (and the well-wishes of our pre-orders) gives a true imperative to sticking the course. I am eternally grateful for the obligation, as what this research has given me is a headspace and a knowledge set I would have had no way of assembling on my own.

Our next free tutorial coming from the new books will be the mighty Casting Spine and the Star Spiral. This set is intense, because of the possibilities it can teach, and we are carefully formatting it for stand-alone publication so that even a beginner can handle it.

Did you have any questions about the Flat Star? Or was the pattern sufficient? We want your feedback in the comments.

In the meantime, allow me to show you a nice piece we just published in the Surface Design Journal that hints at what I’ve learned about the Kaleidocycle, and why I still (after 7 years) haven’t published my own pattern for it. The new patterns we have will truly show what I believe, that the soul of the Kaleidocycle (and also of the Möbius strip) are flat, and their extraordinary forms are simply tricks a flat surface can do.

Morphing surfaces are the thing; the machines and marvels they create are only magician’s tricks. Hopefully these statements stir up some discussion.

Download article as a PDF

(Don’t mind the few odd errors in the journal piece – academic journals do not offer review of full layouts in context before they go to press, so there are always odd bits. As Ingrid says, it just adds to the mystery….)

About katemckinnon

Kate McKinnon has devoted herself to the study of how things are done, and how they could be done better.

13 comments on “welcome to a new year

  1. Kathy C
    January 4, 2023

    I am so excited to try the star spiral and can’t wait to see the instructions!

  2. patty moore
    January 2, 2023

    I am so excited for all the new stuff coming out. I love the Star Flowers. They are fun. I’m wondering if I can pre-order the Pattern Book. I’ve pre-ordered Book three. I don’t want to miss out when everything is released. It’s been a long haul for all of you. Thank you for all your hard work and encouragement. I’m hooked!

    • katemckinnon
      January 2, 2023

      Sure, we will have the books up for sale in the shop again soon, and I will make sure you find out about it. Best! Kate

  3. Lesley
    January 2, 2023

    And Happy New Year!

  4. Lesley
    January 2, 2023

    I hate to be a drag, but I’m so confused but all the changes and updates. Are those of us that preordered the hard copy book and the hard copy pattern book still going to receive these? Thanks.

    • katemckinnon
      January 2, 2023

      You are not being a drag, and there are no changes other than that it is taking a very long time to wrap up the project.
      I recommmend however that ANYONE who is concerned about the delivery date of the paper books just get a refund (we have always offered full, no-questions refunds on pre-order reservations) and then you can enjoy the process and buy the books when they all print this coming year.

      It is difficult to explain the explosion of discoveries we had, but this is a serious work and we’re not going to print it all on paper until we feel it is complete. We only get one chance at that. In the meantime, be well.
      Hugs to you, Kate

      • Lesley
        January 2, 2023

        Don’t want a refund — just wanted to confirm they were still in the works! Thanks! We appreciate your time and all the effort!

      • Fiona
        January 9, 2023

        Like Lesley I am also hanging on in there awaiting the arrival of the books. So appreciative of the inspirational and innovative work that has gone in to CGB and the open willingness to share it all. A happy and healthy New Year to us all x

  5. Helen Taverna
    January 2, 2023

    The download article as a pdf does not work on my mobile device… not sure what the issue might me

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This entry was posted on January 2, 2023 by .
January 2023
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