I loved knitting every stitch of this silk cowl and placing every bronze bead! The yarn is 100% silk, hand-dyed by Blue Ridge yarns and the beads are from Beadology in Huntington Beach. Not all beads are made the same. Originally, I started out using a non-metallic bead and many of them I couldn't use because the holes were too small. This was a laborious exercise...trying each bead until I found one that slipped on. When I found Beadology's bronze beads at the Tuscon show, I frogged the cowl and started over with my new beads. Every one fit. I'm not sure if this is because metallic beads lend themselves to precision more than glass, or because of the quality factor. Perhaps it's a little bit of both. The beads I used are "Miyuki Seed Beads", 6's. They cost $9.50 a tube (much pricier than the glass beads) and I used just about the whole tube. Well worth it, given the caliber of the piece.
It is very difficult to capture this beautiful piece (especially with my weak photography skills!) so if you're around this weekend, do stop by a take a gander. The piece is elegant, inspiring, and very wearable (i.e., not heavy even given the beads).