Book Review: Maggie Meister’s Classical Elegance

Do I really need to say anything? This photograph and all the others from Maggie’s book speak so strongly for themselves, they barely need my words. I have been fortunate enough to see some of Maggie’s work in person. I don’t know where she lives now, but for a period of time she lived in my area and was an active member of the local bead society. Every piece I saw was immaculately made and so interesting that you just stared and stared.

The book is exquisite. What I like most is how Maggie shares her inspiration for creating her pieces – whether it’s ancient jewelry, patterns in textiles or architecture. All of us have access to imagery of ancient jewelry and art. And wherever we live we are surrounded by sights, patterns and color. How beautiful to reinterpret these sources into jewelry.

Most of the pieces look very complex. Maggie shows how they are made from multiple components that are then linked together. She also shows how the projects can be used as jumping off points for other pieces of jewelry. How the links that make up an earring could be used as part of a bracelet.

I fell in love with bead weaving many years ago and spent a lot of time doing it. Recently metal, wire and enameling have pulled me away from bead weaving. I have to say this book makes me want to pull out my seeds, delicas and 15’s and find a way to combine bead weaving with the other types of jewelry I am making. I’m inspired.

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