The Museum of Beadwork in Portland, Maine, put out the call for a community Beaded Square Project “marking this very particular time we are going through together, apart.” Oak Park’s Bead in Hand store owner and beadwork artist Kim Humphrey responded with her take on COVID in the world in 2020. The 6-inch square, which will be part of a wall-mounted quilt in the museum’s permanent collection, took Humphrey about a month, working “a little here, a little there.” 

“I started by sketching some ideas, most of which changed as I started working on it, which is pretty normal for me,” she said. “I wanted to show that the virus affects the world, that we all need to do our part — wearing masks, and a little humor with a toilet paper roll seemed important too. … The piece is also dotted and edged with beaded ‘virus’ symbols.”

The work is on view at the store, which sells bead supplies, kits and more, at 245 Harrison St., through the end of 2020, before it heads to the museum.

The museum website can be found here: and a link to the Beaded Square Project is here:

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