Wednesday, August 18, 2010

UFO Spotting - Have You Seen Any?

UFOs are the bane of my existence. No, I don't see flying saucers or little green men. UFO, in this case, stands for UnFinished Objects. UnFinished BEADED objects, to be exact.

My mind is always swirling with new ideas. Some of them are committed to paper, some float around in the vast recesses of my brain for hours, days, months, years. And some of them make their way out of my head and onto my beading board.

The problem is that once on my beading board, there's absolutely no guarantee that these beady bits of inspiration will turn into finished pieces. I have every intent of finishing them when I start them. And I'm happy to say that most of the time what I envisioned in my head translates pretty well for me once I pick up the beads and start to work. But I have a frighteningly large number of pieces that have been relegated to bins to live with other UFOs because I just haven't managed to do the finishing touches -- in most cases, closures, the addition of a "special" focal, or something along those lines.

Pathetic, right?

But I think every beader out there probably practices this bad habit, although maybe not to the extent I do.

Within arm's reach of me right now are at least a dozen UFOs. Yep. A dozen. Maybe more. I'm afraid to count them.

There's the piece you see in the first picture... a bead crochet rope using hematite rondelles with bright gold colored delicas. It was kind of an experiment to see how the rondelles would look if crocheted so they all lined up single file. The experiment was a success, and a happy customer is wearing her own custom version of a delica/rondelle bracelet. But alas, this one sits next to me without a clasp of any kind.

The second picture is another bead crochet rope I made using some gorgeous Czech glass beads with a picasso finish. I love the beads, love the colors, love the pattern (which was also an experiment). But it's also missing its closure.

Then there's a long bead crochet lariat that needs something for the ends... and a shorter bead crochet piece which is going to have a Lisa Peters giant bead focal (that goes with the rope wonderfully) but needs a closure. A freeform peyote heart. A short length of bead crochet rope (bracelet size) using some beautiful raku colored beads that coordinate perfectly with a MakuStudio raku button, but I need to figure out how to put everything together for that one. A whole bag of peyote tubes. Wonder what I was thinking when I made those? Hmmm. Another bead crochet rope with a diamond pattern, using bright coppery beads and silver beads. A necklace using one of Lisa Peters' gorgeous cabochons and some vintage watch parts, exploring my steampunk side - that one could be considered finished, as it's wearable in its current condition, but I just need something else to make it "right".

See what I mean? And those are all pieces I can see and reach without even leaving the chair in which I'm sitting. I shudder to think of all the pieces that are stashed away out of sight...

Ah well. I have discovered that I'm in good company.

Perhaps because I didn't want to feel alone in this plight, I posted a message on my Facebook page while back asking for others to 'fess up about their UFOs. Only two of my beady friends were brave enough to step forward.

Melody Murray (salamanderhouse on Etsy) sent me the picture above, with these comments:

This was going to be a cuff bracelet, with an art deco flavor. It wouldn't cooperate, it wouldn't be what I saw in my head, it tormented me and then it turned into this:

and continued to taunt me until I rolled both of 'em up together and shoved them in the back of a drawer. They still mutter imprecations in my direction every now and then. I don't think either one of them is finished with me...

And my beading buddy and Cosmic Sister, Carol Dean Sharpe (SandFibers) sent me this picture of one of her UFOs, along with this comment:

Okay...this has been waiting for me to do something with it for years. I couldn't decide on what kind of rope to finish it up with and then I got sidetracked. Once I get sidetracked, I sadly seldom return to a project :( It's an LPA [Lisa Peters Art] cab, of course.

I know there's no logic to this reasoning whatsoever, but I feel a little better about my own UFOs knowing that others share in my plight.

Any UFOs hanging around your house? Come on. 'Fess up.


Baby Sister said...

Okay, I confess I have many UnFinished Objects around my house... dishes, laundry, dusting, etc. But when I RETIRE, it will all be done. Honest ;-D

Anna said...

I have a couple, but I usually take things apart. My mom on the other hand, had unfinished projects everywhere when I was growing up, which is probably why I take my frustrations apart!

BackstoryBeads said...

It’s rare that I have more than three UFO’s, works in progress, where something is actually on the needle. My problem is USO’s – unstarted objects. I have 10 projects (4 necklaces, 5 bracelets and one brooch) where beads, pattern, thread, needles and clasps are packaged together (in gallon plastic bags) waiting to be made. I love to dream about the next project, gather all the materials, and then find myself tempted by another. For instance, right now I’m wondering how your fantastic bead crochet rope with shiny hematite rondelles would translate in kumihimo!