I am an independent artisan, currently focusing on hand beaded wearable and non-wearable art. Please feel free to contact me with any questions or comments, or to share your bead work.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Bead Renaissance Show

The Bead Renaissance Show was in town. I shopped till I dropped!

There were some really great vendors, and some that were not there that I sorely missed. Karen Bye of Byebeads.com was one I look forward to every year and she was conspicuously absent . I ADORE her vessels, and the aromatherapy scents she sells for them. Luckily, by clicking on the link above, you can shop with her on line and look at the shows she will be at.

I stopped by the Weir Studios booth to say hi. I was incredibly lucky, and a couple of months ago I got to visit them in their studio. What an amazing place, and what wonderful people. They made me and the friend I was visiting feel so welcome. I GOT FIRST PICK OF CABS RIGHT OUT OF THE BATH AFTER THE KILN! It was so fun. (I will try to get pictures of them and get them up some time soon.)

My first stop, because I was afraid they would sell out of what I wanted, was Sonoran Beads. I had seen on their website that they were making glass end caps. My thought was that these would work for Kumihimo braids. I was right! They had some amazing samples and pieces for sale as well. I got two pairs of end caps.

The first was this gorgeous pair of borosilicate glass in their "Calla Lilly" style in swirling blues, greens, amber, and metallics. They have a fairly large opening, so will need to be part of something un-delicate.

The second set is in their "bullet" style. They are a little smaller and are flat and round. The pair I got were done in purple, amber and green with a pale pink rim.

Both pairs were $14 a set. That's a pretty good price if you figure what a set of sterling silver cones would cost in that size, and these are handmade, and really unique looking.

My next stop, again because I was wanting something in particular, was Jane's Fiber & Beads. They carry best selection of seed beads I have ever seen.
I love them! I was a little disappointed this year, they did not seem to have any where near the amount of beads they usually have with them, although they said that they had the usual assortment, just not the large quantity of each. The upshot of that was, that they had already sold out of a couple of the things I needed. I was very sad. Apparently that did not hurt my shopping ability. I found some really fun stuff. I love the colors they carry. No one else seems to carry the variety they do, and the "odd" colors they do. I really respond to the "vintage-y" looking colors, and never have any problem finding them there.

Bead Stuff is another one of my favorite places at the show. I like their selection of Czech Glass and German Glass beads. They also have a good selection of tools, and their price on Sterling Silver is really good. I got some soldered jump rings in various sizes and some really fun flower beads at $4.00 each.

For years, I have also been collecting their glass fruit beads. I got some really cute apples, in a shape I did not currently have. Some day I am going to make some really Carmen Miranda-y thing with them.

At M2 Designs (they do not seem to have a website) I got a really great hammer, $6.50, for use with steel stamps and metal. It is very ergonomic and extremely well weighted, feels really good in the hand. They were showing the (sort of) new bronze PMC. I sure would love to play with that, but it is not intended to be fired with a torch or a Hot Pot, and that is all I have access to.

At Awesome Beads & Buttons they had a really fun selection of hand dyed fibers.
I wanted it all!

What I got was, Hand Dyed Japanese Silk Cord. It is in greens, browns, golds, and plums. SO pretty. Will be a lot of fun to try with Kumihimo.

I got 12 Yards for $9.00, which I think was the show price, because they were marked $12.00.

I also found some really beautiful Czech Glass buttons. They are fabricated from new glass but made in the old molds. The designs are really wonderful. I try to get a few any time I go some where they have them. They make great clasps for bracelets, and serve as a focal point as well.

I found a really interesting strand of Dyed Marcasite in graduated donuts. It is very colorful, and I am picturing it silk knotted with rust colored silk. I found it at Kingdom Trading Company (no website I can find) for $10.00.
It reminded me of a strand an artist friend of mine did with silk knotting. Her strand was even more wonderfully colorful than mine and I am not remembering what the stone was, but she used like five strands of silk in five different colors to knot it, and it turned out amazing.

The first thing I did after getting home was document every thing I had bought, and if I had any ideas about what I wanted to do with them.

I think it is important, especially if you intend to sell your work, to keep track of what you buy, from where you bought it, and how much you payed. I find it can also help if you write down or draw any thoughts you are having about what your plans for the beads and things are.

I do this in my Bead Journal. That day, I drew pictures (not very good ones, but it means I will remember what every thing is), and then later took photos and got them on the computer.

I highly recommend this! I try to keep a journal around at all times to sketch in and jot down ideas, for my beads and for the rest of my so called life.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Beadalot update

Beadalot Enterprises

I have an update on Beadalot. THEY ARE BACK! Every once in a while I do a Google search for them, and it finally paid off!


This is the link to their Etsy store.

Go see them, they are really cool!

I am also happy to report that, as of May 14th 2009, they are offering the kits for Edward for $60.00, and you can now get just the pattern for $15.00. Personally I recommend the kit. Some of the supplies can be difficult to find, and what they are charging is a good price.

So... Yay! Very good news.

Blue Cuff Bracelet

This is a really fun bracelet to wear. It is stretchy so it is very comfortable.

It was made with square stitch on elastic using large rounded triangle beads, in a pale clear blue
lined with white, and a pale blue lined with silver. private collection

Because the beads are triangles they line up next to one another either point up or down. In this picture the white lined
are tip down, flat side up, so they are more prominent. If you flip the bracelet inside out, the silver lined would stand out more.

The bracelet measures 6 1/2" x 1"

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