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“Mo” completed

The “Mo” inspiration table is done.

Since I have a tendency to overwork art projects (eventually “perfecting” them straight into ruination), I forced myself to stop early by varnishing the tabletop even though there were still elements that were either unfinished or not to my satisfaction. That the painting is rough-edged and imperfect is a feature, not a bug.

Having forced myself to quit putzing with the painting, I glued seed beads all the way down the grooves in the legs and affixed larger baubles where the legs join the top.

Above are the baubles and beads on the legs flanking the (Modigliani-inspired) face. The center doodad on each side leg is a beautiful earring that MamaLiberty happened to include in a package as I was working on this project. A nice bit of serendipity; the earrings are perfect. ML also later provided paints I needed to finish the tabletop (so I wouldn’t have to break my rule of using only materials on hand — nothing bought).

The final photo shows the beading I used on the legs at the top and bottom of the oval. I didn’t have as nice a center bauble here as on the sides. The color’s a little wrong. Oh well. The entire production is meant to be funky.

Though I make no pretense of this being Great Art, overall I’m pretty pleased. It actually came out a lot like I envisioned it a year ago when I first spotted the old table at a garage sale. Biggest change: I originally planned much, much more elaborate beadwork, not just tiny detail like this. But I decided not to bead the top because it’s going to be a working bedside table and I didn’t want teacups or alarm clocks tipping on raised surfaces. And I decided not to do elaborate loops of beads on the legs or around the edges, again to make it more practical as a working table. (Didn’t want to reach out in the middle of the night and accidentally claw off some elegant swoop of beadwork.)

So I could have gotten fancier and done more. But it’ll do.


  1. Pat
    Pat July 14, 2015 4:27 pm

    That’s great, Claire, I like that! It has just enough beadwork to “fancy it up” without overdoing it. The colors work well together, too.

    And you’ve given some life to her. *Your* Modigliani is worth looking at. Enjoy her…

  2. Claire
    Claire July 14, 2015 4:53 pm

    Why thank you very much, Pat. I hope the eyes look a little less like they have cataracts, too, even though I decided not to give her pupils. Up close, there’s a lot of detail in the color. Wish it showed better in the photos.

  3. Pat
    Pat July 14, 2015 5:18 pm

    Definitely not cataracts, even w/o pupils. There’s some “highlights” in the eyes that give it life.

  4. KiA
    KiA July 14, 2015 9:10 pm

    with a rebel yell fire she cried “Mo”, “Mo”, “Mo”

    now were i to stare at her long enough, i’d notice a slite bump on the bridge of her nose; and while pondering whether it’s broken, i imagine a not so pleasant fellow appearing out of nowhere to ask “whatch yer lookin at, son?” and i’d say “oh nothing good sir. she just reminds me of a painting. here, your next ale’s on me” and think that explains that.

  5. Robert Davidson
    Robert Davidson July 14, 2015 9:35 pm

    Good job. Turned out real nice.

  6. winston
    winston July 14, 2015 10:41 pm


  7. Karen
    Karen July 15, 2015 5:20 am

    That turned out great! Gives me decorating ideas for our quirky house.

  8. Laird
    Laird July 15, 2015 7:44 am

    Very nice. I like the final colors.

  9. Paul Bonneau
    Paul Bonneau July 15, 2015 8:37 am

    Yes, it looks very nice!

  10. Beth
    Beth July 15, 2015 10:13 am

    Very nice indeed, and good eclectic color palette. Those seed beads must have taken some time and patience to glue on.

  11. MamaLiberty
    MamaLiberty July 15, 2015 10:20 am

    That’s very interesting. 🙂 I see what you mean about how you used the earrings. They look better on the table than they ever did on my ears.

  12. Claire
    Claire July 15, 2015 11:01 am

    Thank you, guys. And thanks again, ML for the supplies (especially those earrings).

    Beth, the seed beads definitely required patience, but not as much as you might imagine. The beads I used weren’t loose, but were already threaded on strings when I bought them. I just laid down a strip of glue, then placed a string of beads in it. It was still a messy, tricky job with an imperfect result. Hundreds of beads ended up rolling around the floor or stuck to my fingers. But I think if I’d have had to glue those tiny beads on one at a time I’d have quickly given up on the whole idea.

  13. Rose Kelley
    Rose Kelley July 15, 2015 3:58 pm

    Very clever idea.I love it.

  14. LarryA
    LarryA July 15, 2015 10:00 pm

    County fair, for sure.

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