MOB Challenge: Wings & Stings Winners

MOB Challenge: Wings & Stings Winners

On May 31, 2021, 47 entries for our first MOB Challenge: Wings & Stings were chosen by our panel of judges to move to the final round of judging. Our judges are acclaimed beader and artist Laura McCabe, President of Miyuki Co. Ltd Kenji Katsuoka, and Museum of Beadwork Founder and Caravan Beads COO, Heather Kahn. All 47 will be exhibited at the Museum for our opening exhibition, but 9 in particular were chosen as prize winners.

We are so proud to finally announce the winners of the first MOB Challenge: Wings & Stings, Exploring the World of Beaded Bugs. After much deliberation between our judges, we have one Grand Prize winner of a $500 cash prize plus a $500 Caravan Beads Gift Certificate, five Best of Category winners, and three Judges' Choice Winners. This was an incredibly difficult contest to judge because of the exquisite range of styles and techniques represented. Our judges considered each entry for: 

  •  Overall visual presence
  •  Craftsmanship
  •  Difficulty
  •  Use of beads
  •  Originality/creativity
  •  Connection to the theme 

With that in mind, it is with our utmost excitement to proudly announce our winners!

Grand Prize Winner goes to: 

Sara Hall


8 x 6 inches

"Brick stitch and peyote dragonfly wings form a vessel lit from within. I have
always loved dragonflies, and this challenge inspired me to think beyond
jewelry. The many Miyuki Delica options for matte/shiny, opaque/
transparent, and multiple finishes are perfect for capturing the character of
the wings. As I was researching dragonfly anatomy and symbolism at the
start of this project, I learned that in many cultures it symbolizes love,
growth, transformation and adaptability. This particularly resonated with me;
I recently lost my job of 30+ years due to the pandemic, and have struggled
with “finding myself” without the identity of career. The hours spent creating
this piece were truly the best therapy and meditation I could have hoped

Congratulations, Sara! 

The next prizes go to Best of Category, with each winning a $300 Caravan Beads Gift Certificate. The categories are Sculpture, Clothing, Jewelry, Accessory, and Tapestry.


Sculpture Category Winner goes to:

Delia Carmen Cepoi


18.5 x 8 x 6.5 inches

Miyuki beads, styrofoam, Fireline, glue, leather, wire. Techniques: peyote,

Congratulations, Delia!


Clothing Category Winner goes to:

Mary Zimmerman


 Congratulations, Mary!


Jewelry Category Winner goes to:

Karmen Schmidt

"Oleander Hawk Moth - Life Cycle of Daphnis Nerii"

Necklace 28 inches long, diameter 7 inches at widest.

"Humans retain a recognizable form from embryo through adulthood. But,
Daphnis nerii (D. nerii) metamorphoses dramatically, wherein each stage
assumes an unrecognizable form from its prior stage: round, green eggs
give rise to tiny green caterpillars which turn into large, yellow-green
caterpillars with blue and black “eye-spots” and marvelous rear-end,
golden horns. Caterpillars thrive on oleander leaves which are deadly
poisonous to humans! It then pupates in a red-gold leathery hull, emerging
as the world’s most splendid hawk moth. An adult Daphnis fills the entire
hand! D. nerii was created using 15/o, 11/o, and 8/o seed beads, 11/o
cylinder beads, 13/o charlottes, 8/o glass drops, crochet thread,
copper wire, Fireline, and metal snaps. Stitches include increasing and
decreasing flat peyote, increasing and decreasing tubular Peyote, square
stitch, Ndebele, stitch-in-the-ditch, bead crochet, French wirework.
Estimated hours to create, 138.

 Congratulations, Karmen!


Accessory Category Winner goes to:

Melissa Shippee


9 x 8 x 3 inches

Beaded mask featuring all stages of butterfly development using seed
beads, crystals, silk fabric, and synthetic fabric with flickering LED lights.

Congratulations, Melissa!


Tapestry Category Winner goes to:

Katharine Claringbould

"Life on the Wing"

16 x 20 inches unframed, 16.5 x 20.5 framed.

"Made from Miyuki beads, a small number of other beads and rhinestones,
using epoxy sculpt as the adhesive onto wooden substrate.
The piece is made on a 2D surface with a number of 3D elements, for
example the body of the butterfly is 3D as are the swirls.
Monarch butterflies come to my backyard every summer, and I love
watching them throughout their lifecycle. this piece represents their
fragility and strength. The swirls are the air currents flowing around them,
which they successfully navigate for thousands of miles and the
background color represents the pollen they need to survive."

Congratulations, Katharine!


In addition to the Best of Category, we have a Judge's Choice award, which is an $150 Caravan Beads gift certificate. 

Judge's Choice (Laura McCabe's Pick)

Melanie Christie

"OGG: Old Green Grasshopper"

30 x 15 x 24 inches


"This vintage Marx “Happy Hopper” ride-on toy has been transformed with
thousands and thousands of Miyuki seed beads, bugle beads, and tila
beads. He is further embellished with vintage rhinestones, Czech glass
buttons, Swarovski crystals, rhinestone chain, and vintage reflectors."

Congratulations, Melanie!


Judge's Choice (Kenji Katsuoka's Pick)

Lynne Sausele


5.75 x 5.75 x 3 inches

"This piece is entirely beaded except for the underside of the dragonfly’s
wings which are in gold leaf. I used glue, beads embroidery, and peyote
stitch on the beaded bead inside the cup."

 Congratulations, Lynne!


Judge's Choice (Heather Kahn's Pick)

Melanie Chouinard

"The Firefly Queen"

15 x 8.5 x 6.5 inches


"The Queen of the Fireflies lights up the night with shimmering beads and a
glowing green light. This Firefly Queen was made using a variety of Miyuki
seed beads, drops, and bugles in an array of techniques : bead
embroidery, flat and tubular peyote stitch, netting, brick stitch, flat and
cubic right angle weave, tubular and flat herringbone, and freeform.
The beads are supported by a metal armature and a bulb containing lights.
The base hides a battery pack inside that can be turned on with the flick of
a switch to light up her abdomen."

Congratulations, Melanie!


There will also be a People’s Choice Award. This award will be decided after the opening of the exhibition as it will be chosen by votes during the Grand Opening Gala and museum attendees. The prize is a $150 Caravan Beads Gift Certificate.

To all of our winners and all 47 pieces chosen to be exhibited at the Museum in 2022: We are so proud to present your beautiful work to the world. Congratulations to everyone for creating exceptional beadwork! We look forward to our Grand Opening Gala in 2022 and showcasing every one of these incredible works of art.

Museum of Beadwork, 8/1/2021

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  • Heather Kahn
Comments 7
  • Cath Thomas
    Cath Thomas

    Truly delightful, exquisite beadwork. Congratulations to all for making truly magical works of art.

  • Karin  Blaquier
    Karin Blaquier

    What a stunning array of talent. Exquisite workmanship. Very creative ideas. Congratulations.
    I would be interested in where these Artists hail from. Near or far?

  • Elissa Berger
    Elissa Berger

    Such inspiration! The creators of these masterpieces are true artists.

  • Amy Bradley
    Amy Bradley

    What a stunning, marvelous variety of winning beadwork!

  • Sue Ware
    Sue Ware

    Amazing! I love seeing the creativity of the different artists, especially the sculptures. Can’t wait to to hear about the next category.

  • Leslie Emerson
    Leslie Emerson

    Congratulations to all the winners, your pieces are extraordinary. Well done! ❤️

  • Adrienna Vail
    Adrienna Vail

    Congratulations to all of the artists. These are beautiful. I am especially proud of my college friend, Sara Hall, who I know always strives for excellence.

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