Auditioning beads for Roses
Today I dug through my boxes of seed beads, charms, etc and pulled out the ones that could work on these blocks. I long ago trained friends and family to say 'thank you' and 'I love you' with beads and embroidery floss, so I have a few to choose from. ;)
(A note about the picture: I've thrown a little bit of every possible bead onto the squares, just as a way to see how the colors, textures, shapes, and sizes are working with the blocks, the embroidery, and each other. I really don't expect to use this many beads on the blocks, and they won't be so haphazardly distributed, either!)
My favorite shape is the heart, so I have quite a few of those, and I think they're a perfect pairing for the roses.
( I can't quite shake the voice of the head of my art department ringing around in the back of my head saying (about the hearts), "It's trite, it's cliche, and it's been done too often before", darn her! -- but I prefer to see hearts as a solidly established and fundamental part of our collective visual vocabulary. If I'm a writer, should I avoid using the words "I love you" because they're so common as to be trite and meaningless? No! I don't think so. and I won't shy away from hearts as a visual touchstone either. Touchstones of that familiarity can as easily be used for power as for triviality. I'm sure of it!)
Anyway, aside from encoding the meaning of love and romance, the heart shape also combines angularity with curves, and that is a recurrent theme in itself in these blocks and in my body of work as a whole.
By using just a couple shapes recurrently will allow me to use a whole lot more of them without overpowering my blocks. The subtlety of difference between one heart and the next will keep it interesting, and the sameness will give a sense of harmony and repetition.