Another challenge piece FINISHED!

Yesterday, I talked about my newest team, the Etsy Bead Embroidery Guild.  They have regular themed challenges (which they call “Bead Fests”) and this most recent challenge was “Steampunk.”  The deadline isn’t until the 31st, but I have a lot to do this month, so wanted (and was inspired) to get it done early.
Steampunk is an interesting design melding of Victorian romanticism and modern technology.  Often, this style uses antique style keys, locks, hearts and cogs.  It melds them with ruffles, lace and silks.  There are a few really great books on the market just now that discuss Steampunk style; in fashion it is growing as a mainstream “look.”

You may want to take a look at Diane Hyde’s website “Beadpunk” for inspirational items.

Good examples of steampunk style are found in the movies Hellboy II, Sherlock Holmes, League of Extraordimary Gentlemen and Wild Wild West.

From Wikipedia:
Steampunk is a sub-genre of science fiction that typically features steam-powered machinery, especially in a setting inspired by industrialized Western civilization during the 19th century. Therefore, steampunk works are often set in an alternate history of the 19th century’s British Victorian era or American “Wild West”, in a post-apocalyptic future during which steam power has regained mainstream use, or in a fantasy world that similarly employs steam power. Such technology may include fictional machines like those found in the works of H. G. Wells and Jules Verne, or the modern authors Philip Pullman.

Steampunk may also, though not necessarily, incorporate additional elements from the genres of fantasy, horror, historical fiction, alternate history, or other branches of speculative fiction, making it often a hybrid genre.

You can read more about it here

The design started with a couple of pieces I purchased from Diane Hyde years ago at Bead & Button.  I’ve been hoarding them just waiting for the right piece to put them into.  You can actually purchase them on her website (link is above).

To this, I added a stamped art nouveau face cabochon I bought from her, but can’t find on her website.  I had three Chinese crystal HUGE (maybe 25mm) rivolis that I got from Charlene (the owner of Caravan Beads in Chicago), some elk hide, some fluffy fiber fringe and a spherical watch pendant.  I added in a bunch of Swarovski pearls, some pink quartz I got in a bead swap (check out the bead swaps at ) and started my bead embroidery work!

I always work from the center outward, so glued down the floral stampings and face cabochon first and captured them in the beadwork.  For this particular piece, I wanted to learn how to do some diagonal peyote stitch leaves and found the free instructions here!

I don’t think I actually purchased anything for this piece except for the copper tube clasps.  Everything was “in stash.”

You can view more about this piece on my Etsy.