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Poultry Producer Uses Eggs For Beadwork Art
"I have more control with a tweezers than a paintbrush,” says Jodi Merrimack, as she picks up a tiny glass bead and places it on a quail egg. She rarely draws her design on the egg first. “I start at a center point and go from there. If I don’t like it, I wipe it away.”
  With experience gluing beads on eggs since 2001, she doesn’t need to start over too often these days. She takes on a variety of challenges from customers who want their pets, livestock or barns memorialized on eggs.
  Most of the eggs come from chickens, quail, pheasants and ducks that she and her husband raise on their Knapp, Wis., farm.
  After draining the eggs with a syringe, cleaning them with bleach, and drying them thoroughly, the eggs are ready for art. Merrimack’s designs usually completely cover eggs with beads, which help to make them more durable.
  Her cardinals and other birds, flowers and geometric designs are popular with customers at the craft shows she attends. So are the animal families (a cow, pig or sheep with babies) that she makes entirely with beads.
  “I’m always looking for new things to do. It’s challenging to find a good design,” she notes. With 10 containers filled with trays of beads, she has plenty of colors to choose from - and it takes lots of beads.
  She learned that quickly when making a Green Bay Packers football for her father. She had just a quarter-size space left to fill when she ran out of beads and couldn’t find the right color (dye lot) to finish. She bought new beads, soaked the egg to remove the beads and started over.
  “I’m very precise and want it to be a good product,” Merrimack says, whether it’s a tiny quail egg or a pair of Humpty Dumpty eggs on a wall.
  Her prices run $9 for quail eggs, $20 for pheasant eggs and $40 for turkey eggs. Emu eggs run $125 and up depending on complexity. Smaller eggs come with hangers and larger eggs come with a stand.
  Merrimack doesn’t have a website, but invites people to contact her by phone, mail or email for custom requests.
  Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Jodi Merrimack, 3298 53rd Ave., Knapp, Wis. 54749 (ph 715 665-2513; jjmack@wwt.net).

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2017 - Volume #41, Issue #4