For the last few years I have done a workshop with international designers when they visit to teach at The Melbourne Bead Expo, run by The Bead Society of Victoria.
I have met Marcia DeCoster, Melanie Potter and this year I met Helena Tang Lim.
Helena has been a beader for 20 years, coming from a background making traditional Chinese beaded shoes, which today sell for $1000.00 each. An amazing designer whose designs, colour palette, layout and originality I really admire. Also a big lover of Swarovski montees I learnt the difference between a 'Rose' montee and a 'chaton' montee yesterday. One is never too old to learn.
Yesterday's class was small in numbers and I had met 4 of the 5 ladies before. Helena shared information in a very relaxed manner, making the class seem effortless.
I was very fortunate to see Helena's Battle of the Beadsmith 2012 piece - the one with the beetle wings - along with another she had done and changed her mind about.
Very unique creations with a charming mix of embroidery and bead-weaving. I enjoyed being surprised seeing where she placed her clasps, most original.
Below is the Lady Madeleine's necklace centrepiece I learnt to make in class. I finished the bale part this morning. Now I need to make the rope and attach it.
If you ever get the chance to meet and learn from Helena do not hesitate.
It is a great experience I am very glad to have had.