Monday, June 05, 2006

Val Magnuson's Artistic Purses

Today I'd like to share with you a little treasure....Beautifully beaded images....extravagant metallic and cut beads.......functional and fabulous......These words describe Val Magnuson's beaded purses. Made with a variety of beads and crystals, Val's purses offer a chance to own and enjoy an artist's vision of a wonderful (and highly collectible) art.

Val's purses are loom-woven using a variety of bead sizes (see image at right). Her latest piece reminds me of a cross between a kuba cloth and a celtic design and is just gorgeous. If you look closely at the image, you might see her signature - can you find it? (It's very clever!). These purses take 100's of hours to complete. Besides being loom woven (and tying off all those threads) they must also be attached to a purse frame, lined, and fringed. I can't wait to see the finished purse!

One of Val's most recent works features the Fox Theatre, shown left. The Fox Theatre is a landmark historic theatre in Detroit. Built in 1928, its marquee is typical of the style and beautifully re-created in Val's purse. Also an avid poet (She's published several books of poetry), Val occasionally inscribes lines from a poem onto the back of these silken beauties.

Shown right is Val's beautiful Kilim Purse in aquas, pinks, and metallics and woven with tiny, tiny seed beads. According to Val, "This [purse] was very difficult, but I love to challenge myself and am always up to something new. The kilim purse is made with true cuts [and the] holes so small- I wondered how I could do the fringe. I finally ended up using zero zero thread and the tiniest needle. I had to use 3 x glass to thread the needle!" Truly, this is a labor of love!

I found many images of Val's work featured on a number of web sites (click on the name to view): Land of Odds Gallery, Shipwreck Beads Gallery, Suzanne Cooper's Gallery, Beaded Images Gallery, Aryhonel, and the Thread Heaven Gallery. Val also has a long list of publications and will be featured in this month's edition of Strut Magazine.To find out more about Val's work (she has a few pieces currently for sale), click HERE to send her a note. I'm sure she'd love to hear from you!

Thank you Val for sharing your beadwork with us -it's both beautiful and inspirational!
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LJ said...

Whoa, mama! These are SOOOOOO gorgeous.
Little masterpieces. ("Little" being a relative word. They are huge masterpieces in beadwork terms!)Lovely, lovely, lovely...

Anonymous said...

Thanks for your kind remarks LJ-
I appreciate it- I am driven when it comes to beads- that's for sure!
Val Magnuson

walt larsen said...

Your creativities know no bounds or limits, and so with your writing and beading etc. wow
walt larsen of tehachapi, california

Anonymous said...


Wonderful to read!!!! A true creative talent!!! Awesome!!!!!!your purses are works of art!!!