Or not so cheap. The necklace itself isn't cheap but the tools are.
I made quite a bit of progress on the necklace this week. Here's a close up. There are two silver beads flanking the large bead and then 14 strands of seed beads in 4 colors all mixed up at random. I am debating if 14 strands is enough or not. I am going to do the 14 on the other side and then decide, so please weigh in. I have about 4 done on the other side and you can see them at the bottom of the photo. Here's my oh-so-inexpensive bead set up.The base is a metal thali (just the tray, no food ;-) ) with a washcloth in it to prevent things from sliding around. A plastic bowl serves to hold the beads. I tried using slip knots on coil-less safety pins to prevent the beads from sliding off but it didn't always work. So I went looking for Bead Stoppers at the local craft store that is supposed to carry them. No luck. They didn't have them. But they did have crimp beads that looked a lot like those Bead stoppers. So I bought them. $1 for more than I need. You can see them at the top of the tray. One of them was too tight to pull the beading line through. But enough of the others work. I am using a Big Eye needle to thread the beads and you can see it in the middle of the bowl.
I also made a multi-grain bread using a recipe from The Bread Baker's Apprentice. It has come out really well. I like Peter Reinhart's writing style and have bought his Whole Grain Breads which has a different technique that I have to try.
No knitting but that has to change soon. I have a contract from Interweave for an item to go in a new book coming out next year. The yarn arrived yesterday and I need to get started on the charting and knitting.