Romantic Beading with Melissa Grakowsky Shippee

by Mandi Bugatti | Bead Circle Podcast

It is an honor to introduce my guest, Melissa Grakowsky Shippee. She originated from and still resides in the rolling hills of Connecticut. She received a BFA in Painting and a BS in Physics from the University of Connecticut in 2006. Since then, she has discovered the world of beadwork and fallen in love with this art form. As the graphics coordinator for Beads East, she learned most of the bead stitches by writing beadwork instructions.

Melissa created an award-winning beaded mask, created several more in the collection, and went on to teach a full workshop on the technique at B&B 2013. She is drawn to crystals, metallic beads, and contrasting colors. One of her primary design principles is to have some form of self-similarity on all scales, an idea pulled from mathematics and nature.

Scepter Necklace by Melissa Grakowsky Shippee

In my interview with Melissa, we discuss her gorgeous beaded masks, her book I Can Herringbone: From Basic Stitch to Advanced Techniques, and her new venture, Bead Elves. I hope you enjoy the interview.

Ceremonial Headdress by Melissa Grakowsky Shippee

Show Notes

  • Intro by Jeannine Rainone of the Beading In the Ozarks retreat
  • Melissa’s website:
  • The Bead Elves’ first annual Fall Foliage Bead Retreat is October 16-19, 2014, at the Old Farms Hotel in Avon, Connecticut. Teachers include Melissa Shippee, Laura McCabe, and Maggie Meister. Optional add-on classes with Majorie Barnes.
  • Click the image to grab Melissa’s book on Amazon:


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Want to win a kit or tutorial from Melissa? All you have to do is leave a comment answering the question: What word would you use to describe your style? Be sure to include your email address and if you are in the U.S. or an international beader. We will randomly select the winners next week. Good Luck!