We really enjoy camping, even when that has meant housing ourselves in a tent in the snow (silly late-May snowstorms). As we’ve added to our family, our camping needs have also grown. The downside is that we’ve been camping less often in the last few years because we’ve found that the increased setup and teardown for each trip makes weekend getaways not worth the hassle. We’ve still managed a few week-long getaways each year, but those are harder to fit in around work and other commitments so they get planned months in advance, and then we anxiously watch the forecast as the date approaches, crossing our fingers that we’ll get decent weather (but packing the rain gear just in case we don’t).
Enter our new trailer! I’ve been thinking about one for a while and started hinting at the benefits of one last summer, but my husband wasn’t won over until this year. So far we’ve only taken it on one trip, but the reduced effort has already prompted us to add another trip this year and also start talking about more weekend getaways for next year. And, of course, I had to commemorate it with a bead (and the start of a new bracelet!)
I coveted the Camper bead for more than a month as we scoped out trailers earlier this Summer, but I didn’t want to get the bead until we had the trailer in our driveway in case somehow I jinxed the plans and we didn’t find one this year. By the time we got the trailer, I was on a bit of a self-imposed bead ban, but I knew that the Camper bead would be the first planned bead under my new system. While I waited for the first of September to roll around, I started playing with a few ideas, using pictures from the internet to build a virtual bracelet. This is the first time that I’ve tried doing an “idea board” for a bracelet and I must say, it actually worked out not badly! It allowed me to rule out a few ideas right away, but wasn’t quite as satisfying as actually playing with the beads.
I easily identified most of the silvers that I wanted for this bracelet (although I don’t have all yet ;)) so I had that as a base to work with while trying to envision the glass beads that would go with them. Since we are fortunate to have many provincial parks to camp in, I knew that I wanted some greens to represent the trees and foliage around us. The one key aspect of camping that I really struggled to represent in my virtual designs was the campfires (and s’mores!). I played with a few orange-ish uniques to try and get the sense of the fire, but they always seemed odd and out of place among the cooler greens. Similarly, the beads I tried for marshmallows/s’mores seemed too light among the darker beads. I finally landed on this artisan bead to represent the fire and it seems to straddle the line nicely.
Now that the bracelet is starting to come together in real life, I find that I still play with my virtual design to confirm my plans for unpurchased beads. And it gives me something to focus on while waiting for the other beads for the bracelet!
Do you do any virtual planning for bracelets, or do you need to see beads in real life before you can really get a sense of how everything will go together?