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5 questions with Renee Kovnesky

Renee hero

Renee Kovnesky is a self-taught beadweaver, beadweaving-with-a-needle artist, teacher, and author based in Appleton, WI. Most recently, Renee authored Exquisite Stitching with Multi-Hole Beads. What began as a hobby for Renee quickly evolved into a career after she found herself consistently drawn to beadweaving. Her work evokes the Renaissance and Victorian eras, incorporating lace and intricate, elegant patterns.

Renee regularly teaches at Meant to Bead in Sun Prairie, WI, in addition to other local bead stores, industry shows, and beading retreats. Since she began her beadweaving profession in 2013, she explains, “the designing and creating hasn’t stopped.” And for the beading world’s sake, we hope it never does!  

Renee purple and green bracelet cropped
Moonlit evening bracelet project featured in Renee's new book. 

HOW DID YOU LEARN JEWELRY-MAKING?

I am a self-taught beadweaver with a needle, and I was taught by a friend to string jewelry. When I went to the beading stores to buy beads my eyes and heart was always drawn towards the beadweaving with a needle. So, one day I went online to see if there were any free patterns and magazines. I found some and fell in love immediately. 

WHAT STYLE OF JEWELRY DO YOU MAKE? HAVE YOU EVER WORKED IN DIFFERENT STYLES/MEDIUMS?

My favorite style is lacy-looking and fine jewelry. The more intricate looking pieces the happier I am. Most of my pieces can look very Renaissance and Victorian. The Victorian era has always been my favorite. Love the look of lace and the beautiful southern bell dresses. 

Renee green necklace cropped
Scalloped tango necklace from Exquisite Stitching. 

WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE MATERIALS TO USE IN YOUR WORK?

I always use Fireline for beadweaving. I have tried many kinds of thread, but I like the stiffness of the line. I find that very easy to work with. Size 11 Tulip needles are a must! There is no other comparison to any other needle, that I have used. They don’t bend as easy as the others and last so much longer than other brands.

You will find in my designs I really love to work with size 15 seed beads.   They make the designs so very delicate and lacy.  I have fallen in love with all the multi hole beads.  When I started designing is when the SuperDuo beads where introduced to the beading world. They can be very challenging and so exciting to use at the same time.   

WHAT IS YOUR WORKSPACE LIKE? WHERE IS YOUR FAVORITE PLACE TO BEAD?

My favorite place to work in the winter is on the couch. I curl up on the couch with my blanket, a pillow on my lap and my bead mat placed in a cookie sheet with a lip so the beads don’t roll away, on top of my pillow. I must have the TV on and my chocolates very close by! In the summer, I love to sit outside on my patio table. The natural light is just the best!!!  

Renee earrings
Another project from Renee's book, Exquisite Stitching with Multi-Hole Beads.

WHAT’S NEXT FOR YOU? WHAT PROJECTS ARE YOU WORKING ON?

Watch for my designs with Starman Trendsetter for 2018.  I am honored to have been chosen to be one of the designers with the Starman Trendsetter 2018 team.  I am excited to get started with my designing with a great team!

WHERE CAN PEOPLE SEE MORE OF YOUR WORK? 

You can find my patterns and kits in my Etsy shop, Elegance by Renee.  

I also like to promote, share my work and work of others on my Facebook page.

Renee Kovnesky headshot
Exquisite Stitching cover

Want to see Renee in person?

Currently she teaches at Meant to Bead, Sun Prairie, WI, usually once of month. Other midwest locations in 2018 include Eclectica Beads, Brookfield, WI; The Bead Coop, Sheboygan, WI; ,the Art Glass & Bead Show, Madison, WI; and on June 3rd & 4th, 2018, she will be teaching classes at the Bead & Button Show, Milwaukee, WI.

 

Learn more about Renee’s new book, Exquisite Stitching with Multi-Hole Beads!

Do you beading?

Then you’ll want to subscribe to Bead&Button magazine! You’ll get exclusive projects, gorgeous design inspirations, helpful advice about new products, and much more!

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