French Beaded Succulents by Lauren Harpster

May French Beading Bead-along

I will be teaching a little class in the “Learn how to make French Beaded Flowers” Facebook group in May. This is a group that Fen Li and I run to help others learn the art of French Beaded Flowers, and so others who enjoy the art can come together to share their work, ask questions, and chat. I’m in charge of the May class, and I’ve chosen a project that’s a little different, and I’m way excited!  

In the last few months I’ve gotten lots of emails and messages asking me for and about succulent patterns. Succulents were further down on my list of things to make. But… as I was trying to figure out what to present as a project for my month, our local nursery posted on Facebook that they had succulents for sale. So, we put on our masks and dragged our kids to the nursery for a much needed outing. And I bought a bunch of succulents so I could study them close up. 

But, then I didn’t even use any of these to design the ones for my class! But that’s okay. It aided in building my excitement, and now I have studies for these varieties done. Because I’m going to make more. Hopefully I’ll get a couple out during May. I’ve developed some neat ideas that I’d like to get out there. 

For my May class I will be teaching two succulents – Echeveria and Sedum Stahlii (aka Coral Bells). 

French beaded Succulents by Lauren Harpster
French Beaded Succulents by Lauren Harpster

I spent so much time trying to decide what colors to use for the Echeveria. They grow in just about every color of the rainbow. I even found some really weird ones that had the full rainbow in them. It was overwhelming to have so many options. So, instead of modeling that one after a specific variety, I picked colors I liked and chose a shape that was generally Echeveria-ish. I went with turquoise because that’s not a color I get to use very often with regular flowers. I also made a smaller blue one, mostly just to show that you can make them smaller by leaving off layers. 

The Coral Bells Sedum is naturally colored based off an image I found on the interwebs, but they do come in other colors as well. 

I was originally going to pot the two plants separately. I didn’t choose them or their colors to go together. But after I put the Sedum together I realized how nice it looked next to my turquoise Echeveria, so I shoved them into the same pot. 

To participate in the class you will need to be a member of the afore mentioned group (link at the beginning of the post). After the class, the patterns will be available here on my website. 

Wedding Bouquet Update

I’m still working on a custom wedding bouquet – the very last custom order I will ever take. So far I’ve made hot pink roses, and orange dendrobium orchids. Since my last blog post I’ve also added in Areca Palm leaves. I didn’t need the full sized leaf for the bouquet, so they are shorter segments. 

I believe in my last post I mentioned I would be working on Pincushion Protea next. But, as I started trials I decided I didn’t like the beads and wire I originally selected, and because I don’t really keep a lot of orange on hand, I had to order more in and wait. So I made the Palm leaves while I waited. 

But, now my new beads and wire have arrived, and they work so much better, and I am nearing completion of the proteas. Can’t wait to show you guys how they turn out! You can kind of see a small portion of my second prototype on my tray here. 

Yes I will be publishing the pattern. And yes I will also be publishing the Dendrobium Orchid above. The Dendrobium is held up at the moment because I don’t want to publish just a stem, but the whole plant. And I want to include alternate shading patterns. So I just need a minute (ish) to get those parts done. But, other stuff came up that was a higher priority. 

That’s all I’ve got for now. Happy Beading to you all! 

10 Comments

  • kmatth7621

    I love succulents! I had many different kinds when I lived in Los Angeles, but had to leave most of them when I moved to Michigan a few years ago. I’m very much looking forward to this bead-along. I’d like to suggest Haworthia fasciata for a future bead-along. The texture and contrasting colors have made this one of my favorites for years, and I noticed it in your nursery box over on the left. I’ve also had the one just above it. I don’t recall the name, but it gets beautifully red in the summer sun. Stay safe, and enjoy your box of happiness.

    • Lauren Harpster

      Oh I’m so happy that you’re excited for this bead-along! I will be designing the Haworthia, but I probably won’t be doing it as a bead-along any time soon. We’ve already got all our classes for the year planned out, and I was hoping to make my version of that plant next month. So, if my ideas work out the way I hope they will, there will be a pattern for it. The one above it in the picture is some sort of Crassula I believe. Take care, and happy beading!

  • Ina N Castillo

    I am thrilled that you are doing a bead-along with succulents! The ones you show here are gorgeous! I do have a question…I want to participate, but I’m not on Facebook anymore. I have shown a finished pattern of yours on Instagram, and I’m currently working your miniature roses pattern, but the succulents would be so fun! Please let me know if there are other options for people like me who love your work, would love to be part of your educational groups, but aren’t on Facebook. Thank you so much!

    • Lauren Harpster

      Hello Ina, I will be putting the videos from the class on YouTube after the Facebook class is over. So everyone will have a chance to play with these patterns. I don’t know of another way to do the class in a community setting other than on Facebook. I will look into options and see if I can come up with something.

      • Ina N Castillo

        Oh, perfect! That’s actually how I discovered your work and patterns was through YouTube! I’m so excited!!!!

      • Lauren Harpster

        Thank you very much! I’m glad so many people are excited for these succulents. I wasn’t sure at first if I’d picked the right theme.

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