Classic Artwork Fuse Bead Competition

Classic Artwork Fuse Bead Competition


Hey everybody! My name is Jasmine Kelly. I go by Jaz. I am the owner and COO of Top Tier Beads. On February 13th, 2022, Contest-Creator Extraordinaire Heidi Adams announced on the Perler Beads Facebook Group that she would be organizing a contest to see who could create the best recreation of a classic art piece out of fuse beads.

After seeing her passion and enthusiasm for both fuse bead art and the fuse bead community, I decided I had to sponsor the competition! I am honored to have had this opportunity to support the fuse bead artist community in their endeavors to create art that both inspires and pushes the boundaries of the art form.

ALL of our contestants were so talented and Heidi and I are both grateful to all who participated. Here is a statement from Heidi Adams herself:

"As a fuse bead enthusiast, I frequently check the posts in the Perler Bead community page, since they tend to influence my own work. I love to see everything the other artists post and also share my personal experiences or advice with new bead hobbyists. When I noticed a post from another Perler member who had re-created the painting "Girl with the Pearl Earring", not only was I thrilled to see something different, but found myself dreaming about ways to see more of that type of bead art. It had motivated me to host a Classic Artwork Beading Contest. Being a bored stay at home mom, I was happy to have something to keep myself busy and provide me with some artistic entertainment. It was exciting to see how much interest the contest generated. I was happy knowing that my spontaneous idea gave others something to look forward to and a way to further engage in the Bead Art community. My first contest experience became even better when I was able to partner with Top Tier Beads to offer a greater prize to the winners! The opportunity to collaborate with Jasmine at Top Tier Beads and bounce ideas off her, definitely helped make this a successful online event. I made lots of new connections and online friends from this adventure and I look forward to doing this again to keep it growing."

Well said, Heidi! Lastly, please make sure to check out all the links for each of these incredible artists. Help support the community by liking and sharing their content and following them on social media. Links are provided next to the artist's name. These folks are so dedicated to their art and absolutely deserve recognition and more followers!

Without further ado, here are the winners of the competition!

1st Place


Bryson Griba (@bryskimakesthings)
M.C.Escher "Drawing Hands"

Modification: Beading Hands


"I mostly entered the contest because I thought it might be a fun added element to the hobby. I usually spend an hour or so a day at my desk working on something or another, so why not try and make something cool? I liked the constraint of a theme, but still having some liberty to play within it... As for the selection of a piece, I had a pile of ideas off the start... I almost did a 3D statue of David, but I realized I had no idea how to design it 🤣 I toyed with Dalì for a bit, but I was worried I'd lose too much detail in beading... so eventually I just started sorting through some galleries of classic art and eventually came across Escher's self portrait. That jogged my memory of his Drawing Hands, and I thought that would be a good fit for a submission... Recognizable, clean lines, and simple enough to Photoshop some tweezers onto. I knew that whatever piece I chose, I wanted to have a nod to beading as part of my personalization... I wanted to gain some brownie points with the voters 😅 From there, my own stylistic preference is to work in greyscale with an element of isolated color, so this whole thing worked perfectly for me!

In the end, I was mostly just excited about the whole process of the contest. It was neat to work on a piece that was part of a community event rather than just because I felt like it, and it was incredibly exciting to see what everyone came up with out of the same instructions. I had a ton of fun with it!"

2nd Place

Kate Rodriguez 
Don Ivan Punchatz "Sheep in Wolf’s Clothing"



"The original Sheep in Wolf's clothing was painted by Don Ivan Punchatz. He also illustrated the original doom box artwork. I entered the contest because I love being challenged to make larger and more obscure designs."

3rd Place

 David Jason Quinones 
(Bead 'Em Up Sprites)
Leonardo da Vinci "Mona Lisa"

 Mona Lisa

"When I started the Mona Lisa, my first thought was to do it just to see if I could pull it off. I spent the last few years remaking video game sprites with a high rate of success, so I decided to try my hand at portraits. After converting 3 portraits for friends and family members, I was confident that I could tackle something much more challenging. I chose the Mona Lisa to pay homage to one of the greatest artists in history: Leonardo Da Vinci."


And now let's witness the submissions of our participants! Take a look at their creations, their source artwork, and even comments from the artists themselves! 

Remember that every single piece you see here took a lot of effort and persistence from their creators. We are all so lucky to have such talented members of the fuse bead art community! Thank you to all who participated, whether you created art, spread awareness about the contest, or cheered our participants on. You have all made an impact on the community and you have my sincere gratitude for participating!


Lyon Richardson
John Singer Sargent "Portrait of Madame X"
Modification: Dominatrix 



The inspiration was a girl who broke my heart. She was the one that said she liked that image, and I stored that in my brain. So when the conditions of the contest was announced, Madame X popped up to the top of what I wanted to do. The altering of her outfit came from the fact that I myself have gone through a similar transformation. So I gave her a twist that came from that. The background pattern is based on a wine bottle and wine glass, mirrored vertically. The XXX was inspired by the giant "X" signs at the "x exotic lounge" off of Burnside in Portland OR, where my friend Izzie works. She worked at a bar and asked for art work to be displayed and I offered. So since January, my art has been on display at Mo's Mighty Tanker on Hawthorne, Which I never assumed or even sought being on the walls anywhere but my house. So I wanted to honor Izzie with this piece.

Zombiie Kiitty
Joan Miro "The Garden"
Modification: Glow-in-the-Dark 

The Garden
The GardenThe Garden Glow 2 

"I love colors so Miro was a perfect fit for me. I wanted something to not only pop in the light but pop in the dark too. It was the first project that I abandoned my pattern and just started free handing it.💚🧟"

Annette Hawkins
Gustav Klimt "The Kiss" 


"The pattern was between the Scream and the Kiss which is both my partner’s favorite paintings. I first looked at doing the Scream and I couldn’t find a “good” picture I wanted to use. I looked at the Kiss and really like the painting. And the race was on. I had never completed such a big piece before and I was happy I did."

Aileen Nelms
Johannes Vermeer "Girl with a Pearl Earring" 

Girl With Pearl Earring

"I am fan of art and have a wall of artists that I admire which I've used Perler beads to recreate their works. Girl with a Pearl Earring is a piece that I’ve admired for its use of color and shading. It was a piece that just needed to be up on my wall."

Erica Flanagan
(FB: ericaflanagan03)
Don Ed Hardy "Unknown Dagger"
Modification: 'Til Death 

Ed Hardy

"This one is actually my largest project I've made so far. I chose to make this pattern for my boyfriend actually. When we first met he was really into the art of Ed Hardy. He introduced me to his art and I fell in love with it! When I'm bored I'll look on Google and Pinterest for new project ideas. I wanted to make something nice for my hubby that I could display in our room for him. So looking through different image ideas online I came across this drawing. And figured it would be perfect! I added my own wording into the banner. Now I have it hanging in our window. So every morning, when the sun shines into our room you can see how the sun shine lights up the colors in the flower. And it just looks beautiful. Just a reminder to my bf of how much I love him. 😊💗"

Rebecca K.
Henri Matisse "The Goldfish"

"I started Perler beading during the pandemic. The bright colors and the chance to use my label maker on the storage containers really drew me in. I love recreating the great Masters in beads and have done the Mona Lisa, American Gothic, Sunflowers, a few Picasso’s etc. I chose to enter the Matisse piece in the contest because it was the most challenging. The number of color changes in the top right corner were crazy! I wanted to enter the contest to show others that there is a side to Perler beading apart from videogame sprites. It was really great to see other like-minded crafters that aren’t that visible on the Perler Facebook pages I follow."

David LeBlanc
(Twitter: @Creatureofdnial) 
(Insta/TikTok: @Creatureofdenial
Charles Wheatstone "Figure 53" Stereoscopic Art

"I entered this challenge because it sounded like fun and I wanted to challenge myself to do something new and different that was out of my comfort zone. I’ve been making hybrid video game Perler characters where I take two known video game characters and combine them into one single character. Going from making 8-bit inspired video game characters to classic artwork was quite a leap. It took me a few days to finally figure out what my best option was. One limiting factor was that I only have the regular size beads. I feel that classic art Perler creations really deserve to be done with mini beads, but sometimes you’ve just got to do what you can with what you’ve got.

For my submission, I wanted to do something unique that was easily recognizable, but not really done with Perler beads. Growing up in the 80’s and 90’s, I was always drawn to the use of stereoscopic images. I had a View-Master and loved looking at various Magic Eye 3D illusions. This led me to delve into the history of the invention of the stereoscope, dating back to 1832. Being new to the world of Perler beads, I wanted to pick something simple, since this wasn’t even something I knew would work or not. I went with a black and white stereoscopic image that when viewed as a single image, creates a square in the middle.

The main challenge I had with the project was being able keep track of where I was in the pattern and being able to align two separate pieces within a picture frame. The pattern tracking was accomplished by printing out the patterns and putting a ruler over the pattern, going row by row. Since the beads never melt together 100% perfectly, I had to approximate the placement of the final pieces, and cross my eyes until I could tell which portions lined up correctly and which didn’t. I then made fine adjustments until the beads lined up best and could see the image of the square clearly."

Linda Terry Hansen
Allan Gilbert "All is Vanity" 

All Is Vanity Beads
All Is Vanity

"I chose "All is Vanity" as my source because my childhood friend had it hanging in her house and I was always fascinated by it. Then to find out that it was drawn by a 19 year old in 1892 and published 10 years later in Life Magazine made it more interesting to me. I wasn’t going to join the contest, but when she extended by a few days, I knew I would have time to complete it. It was made on 16 boards in two days. It went fairly quickly because only nine shades were used, and over 8,000 black beads."


Lene Damgaard
Tuborg Commissioned Artwork "Easter brew"
Modification: Velkommen Collage

 Easter Brew

Sarah Mathews
Rene Magritte "Son of Man"
Modification: Darth Vader Parody

Darth Vader
Son of Man

"I chose to do a Star Wars parody because I happen to be a big Star Wars fan. I entered the contest because I was looking for a new project to do but could not decide what I wanted. I enjoyed the competition and thinking outside the normal patterns you find online. I also chose that picture because it seemed like something I could finish with working 40 hours a week. The only challenge I had was finding the right photo to replicate that I thought wouldn't be close to anyone else's choice."


Tonie Kalim

Grant Wood "American Gothic"
Modification: Minion Parody

Minion Gothic
American Gothic

"The idea of an art competition was both exciting and a bit daunting for me. My journey with Perler Beads began as a form of therapy to keep dexterity in my hands. This has slowly evolved into a passion and a way to express my creativity. The majority of my past projects have been photographed and disassembled. I don't usually share my projects outside of my inner circle. When the idea of an art competition came up, I felt it was a way to showcase and share my work. I have developed an interest in using greyscale with a splash of color in my projects. I chose the painting American Gothic because its iconic and I felt it would be a good fit for my first greyscale project. I chose the minions for color and to make the greys stand out."


Megan J Leyva

Frida Kahlo 
"Self Portrait Dedicated to Leon Trotsky"



Smallish Beads
Andy Warhol "Endangered Species" 
(Freehand bead design)

"The artwork is called "Endangered Species" by Andy Warhol (1983). He painted separate portraits of the 10 animals from the Endangered Species Act of 1973. I chose to recreate 6 of them, each on one standard sized board, with midi Perler beads. Make sure to zoom into the original artwork to see all the colorful lines and details Warhol added to the animals. My specialty is capturing a lot of detail in a small amount of space. These are my own original free-hand designs. I do not use patterns or any pixelating computer programs."


Isabelle Marcellaud 
(Rue De L' Artisanat)

Pablo Picasso "The Dream"  



Carly Dietrich 

Salvador Dali "Persistence of Memory" 


"Getting the colour blending on this piece was tricky and putting all the details in such a small space was also a challenge. I chose it because it was a commission for a customer. 🙂"

Thank you to all who have read this far down! Again, HUGE thanks to Heidi Adams for her tireless work organizing this contest and spreading the word. Thanks as well to all you fuse bead artists and admirers out there! Keep an eye out for the next competition too, you absolutely will not want to miss it!

To stay updated on future contests and engage with an awesome community of fuse bead artists and enthusiasts, be sure to visit and join the Perler Beads Facebook page. For more of my content and Top Tier Beads news, visit my Instagram: @Top Tier Beads and my Facebook Page: @Top Tier Beads

See you next time for Contest #2! In the meantime, y'all take care and remember to Stay Top Tier!

All artists featured have given their consent for their submissions to be posted on this blog post and other marketing materials. 



Increíble. Nunca imagine que se llegara a tanto con esto de las Beads. Saludos desde Puerto Rico.

Lucille Cooley
Lucille Cooley

Was very impressed by pictures love seeing other ideas and the work by perler bead friends thanks so very much for sharing

Leave a comment

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.