On first impression, it really looks like French beaded flowers are selling well for weddings — at least according to the number of sites selling French beaded flowers and the prices being asked for the bouquets.
Interestingly, Katie Dean’s “Bead Flowers and Wedding Bouquets” has been recently published as an e-book with video. I enjoyed reading Katie’s blog post story of how she started her beading journey in 2003.
In 2011 she was asked to do a book about her wedding beaded flowers. As well, she was videotaped for the book. I’m thinking about her final comment on her post where she wonders if French beaded flowers are “the poor sister of bead-weaving.”
Hmm… given that bead-weaving fetches prices of $80 – $200US for beautiful pieces compared to the $500 – $700US prices for wedding bouquets, I am wondering is it really the ‘poorer’ sister?
Certainly making French beaded flowers can be a very time-intensive craft. If one makes a wedding bouquet, is there a reasonable return for the investment of time? I have never made a wedding bouquet, but I can only imagine the hours spent.
My French beaded flowers are smaller. If you are interested in starting smaller you may be interested in Dalene Kelly’s free, downloadable ebook. Her Basic Instructions.pdf are quite helpful for the novice.
After I had downloaded her basic instructions book, I ended up buying the pdf of her “More French-Beaded Flowers” (pictured left). It has been most instructive.
Since the flowers I make are smaller, I am able to make use of found time by carrying a small box of items that would allow me to make a petal or two. If I am waiting for a friend to join me at a restaurant, for example, I am able to pull out the small box and craft a petal or two. It all quickly fits back into the purse as soon as the friend arrives at the restaurant!
Right now I have red S/L seed beads strung on 22 gauge wire in the box with tiny pair of wire snips. I can make a single small petal in just a few minutes.
After I have made enough petals for a flower, I pull them out of the box and leave them at home for when I’ll sit down and bind them in to a flower. You dare not pull the petals out of the box before you’ve finished enough for a flower because you need to see them all to know what size to make the next petal.
You’d be surprised how the petals quickly add up to be the next flower. Seems like there’s something to be said for flower power on speed beads!