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You’re here for beads!? The good ones!

We buy ’em, sell ’em, make ’em… and teach ’em too!
Let’s start with the latest news!


  • Ice, Ice Resin & Minaudieres March 21, 2019

    Ice, Ice Resin
    All right Stop
    Collaborate and Listen
    We got glitter and shards to make it glisten
    Bezels for you to resin pour
    Molds and Templates and so much more
    Ice, Ice Resin Baby
    Ice, Ice Resin Baby

    New Bezel Pans for Resin, and, of course, anything else you want to get down and mix your media on, or in.

    s62273 Ice Resin - Large Rectangle Industrial Bezel - Imitation Sterling
    s61204 Ice Resin - Large Ellipse Rune Bezel - Antiqued Silver
    s61211 Ice Resin -  Shield Rune Bezel - Antiqued Brass
    s62278 Ice Resin - Small Circle Industrial Bezel - Rose Gold (Pack)

    New glittery stuff to add to your Resin creations.

    s61199 Ice Resin -  German Glass Glitter Shards - Ocean
    s61198 Ice Resin -  German Glass Glitter Shards - Primrose
    s62284 Ice Resin -  Luminous Layers - Multi (Pack)

    And we will shortly* have Molds and Templates to go with the Industrial-style bezels. The molds have a slight bevel to them, so that the shapes you make have a little facet on the edges when you drop them into the bezels. Makes for a different look from the domed or flat style of resin. The templates are useful too for getting an accurate cut out of the paper or fabric you want to include as the background. *Darn you postal delays!

    s62281 Ice Resin -  Industrial Bezel Silicon Mold
    s62280 Ice Resin -  Industrial Bezel Template - Clear

    I know that Anne Marie is very excited about this update!

    Compacts and Minaudieres

    Here is another thing to be excited about. From the secret, curious, vintage stockpile – a box of vintage compacts and Minaudieres. That’s a small, decorative handheld (clutch) purse for the fashion-accessory challenged.

    Now, bear in mind, these have been banging around for a few decades in conditions that are not necessarily conducive to them remaining pristine. In fact, it is entirely possible that they are in that box in the first place because they were less than perfect. Some of them have numbers scratched into them – so they might have been sales samples. We don’t know. It’s doesn’t matter. The point is, they are a project and you are going to do something glorious. You’ll cover them or modify them or do something grand, and the surface underneath won’t matter. Read the extended description to find out what the flaws (personality quirks) are, but remember – they are old – like some of us.

    s62249 OOAK -  Compact - Bright Gold Plated
    s62251 OOAK -  Compact - Bright Gold Plated
    s62243 OOAK -  Minaudiere / Purse Clutch Blank - Number 1
    s62242 OOAK -  Minaudiere / Purse Clutch Blank - A45
    s62245 OOAK -  Minaudiere / Purse Clutch Blank - Ebonized

    Also – we are have to beat the staff off with a stick on these in order to offer them to you – they keep leaving sticky notes saying “I want this one.”

    Not so one of a kind, but quirky, are these Lockets. They have a front cover, but it appears to be missing a window or glass insert or enameled piece. I don’t know, but Anne Marie has glommed onto these too – and is planning a class. It’s not on her class list yet, so keep checking to see when it is available. (That’s a hint if ever I wrote one.)

    s62257 Metal Pendant -  Locket - Bright Gold Plated

    I’m thinking we should have called this the Anne Marie update! The black and white crystal clay was her idea too.

    s28319 Adhesives -  Crystal Clay - Black
    s28325 Adhesives -  Crystal Clay - White

    Bird Beads

    Special Request – we hustled these into this week’s update – Bird Beads Navy Blue and Matte Denim Blue.

    s62517 Glass Beads - 11.5mm Coin with Bird - Navy Blue (Strand 15)
    s62518 Glass Beads - 11.5mm Coin with Bird - Matte Denim Blue (Strand 15)

    And we have a bunch more of the strands of metal beads in brushed silver. Plated fine silver over a copper base, these beads are hollow and lightweight – although stringing hollow beads is mildly annoying as the needle goes in one side and then hunts around to find the hole and come out the other side, just in time for you to get your finger in the way and stab yourself. At least the potato-chip shaped curvy disks don’t have that problem!

    s23438 Metal Beads - 16mm Puff Hearts - Brushed Silver (strand)
    s61148 Metal Beads - 20mm Curvy Disk - Brushed Silver (strand)
    s61150 Metal Beads - 12mm Lentil - Brushed Silver (strand)
    s61152 Metal Beads - 7mm Faceted Stardust Cathedral - Bright Silver (strand)

    And these small, metal beads are always popular – they make a great accent bead.

    s61149 Metal Bead - 3mm Faceted Cube - Brushed Silver (strand)
    s62408 Metal Bead - 2.3mm Faceted Cube - Antiqued Silver (Hill Tribe) (strand)
    s62409 Metal Bead - 3x1.4mm Faceted Heishi - Antiqued Brass (strand)
    s62410 Metal Bead - 3x1.4mm Faceted Heishi - Bright Copper (strand)

    And you might need some big headpins to go with that too.

    Findings – Headpins – 3in / 22ga Stacked Balls – Bright Silver (20)

    Headpin – 3.25in / 22ga Ball – Bright Silver (Pack)

    s61155 Findings - Headpins - 3in / 22ga Stacked Balls - Bright Silver (20)
    s62298 Headpin - 3.25in / 22ga Ball - Bright Silver (Pack)

    We’ve also added the 18gauge coloured Aluminum wire to our online stock. This is good for providing structure to larger wire wrap, or making small armatures. Aluminum wire is very soft and easily bent, so not so good for hanging heavy weights, (i.e. don’t hang plants off it), but strong enough for jewelry applications. It has a colour-lacquer finish for vibrant colours, or various metal looks.

    74720002-16 Aluminum Wire - 18ga Round Wire - Pale Copper Color (30 feet)
    74720002-15 Aluminum Wire - 18ga Round Wire - Red (30 feet)
    74720002-11 Aluminum Wire - 18ga Round Wire - Purple (30 feet)
    74720002-01 Aluminum Wire - 18ga Round Wire - Gold Color (30 feet)

    You can Review all the new stuff here!

    Can’t find what you are looking for? Feel free to just email us and ask!


Our Class News

  • Marching into April

    We’re in the midst of the in-between stage of winter turning into spring and waiting to see if March is heading out as a lamb with gentler weather or like a lion with a full winter blast!

    Fortunately, our classes are much more certain – you know you’ll get value for your money from knowledgeable and enthusiastic instructors. Plus you’ll have lots of fun while learning something new! Our late-March classes cover everything from seedbeading to chainmaille to fibrework to metalwork and wirework – there is is literally something for everyone!

    Here are the classes and open sessions scheduled March 21 – 31:

    Thursday, March 21

    FREE Afternoon Bead Tea
    Facilitator:
    Pamela Kearns
    1:00 – 3:00pm
    Share your passion with other like-minded folks over coffee and conversation!


    Capture your style: Bead Embroidered Buttons
    Instructor:
    Anne Marie Desaulniers
    5:00 – 9:00pm
    Recycle a piece of history, and make a few memories, by covering, and then bead embroidering a family button, or two.


    Friday, March 22

    Crochet de Luneville/Tambour Embroidery, Class 2: Mini Monarch Butterfly Motif
    Instructor:
    Catherine Sequalino Poitier
    6:00 – 9:00pm
    Use your Class 1 skills and learn how to create a beautiful mini applique!


    Saturday, March 23

    NEW Hot Connections: Spinner Bangle
    Instructor:
    Iris Rogers Melamed
    10:00am – 4:30pm
    Explore soldering and forming sheet metal and wire to create a beautiful bangle!


    NEW Elfstar Pendant and Jens Pind Chain
    Instructor:
    Marilyn Gardiner
    10:00am – 5:00pm
    Create the perfect pendant and a beautiful, classic spiral chain to match!


    NEW Silky Net Tapered Bracelet
    Instructor:
    Maria Rypan
    12:00 – 3:00pm
    Discover how to combine 2-hole Czech Silky beads, Os, 6mm fire-polish crystals and 8/0 seed beads for a statement bracelet.


    Sunday, March 24

    NEW Fold Formed Leaf Pendant
    Instructor:
    Liz Kennedy
    12:00 – 3:00pm
    Be introduced to fold forming sheet metal and various commonly used techniques – a great first step into metalwork!


    Monday, March 25

    Happy Hour Torching
    Facilitator:
    Carol Cooper
    5:00 – 9:00pm
    This the perfect time for you to come by and work on your lampwork projects, under the guidance of an experience facilitator!


    Planet BeadFX

    Wednesday, March 27

    FREE Open Bead Night
    Facilitator:
    Amanda Pittman
    6:00 – 8:00pm
    Give yourself dedicated beading time while enjoying the company of others!


    Thursday, March 28

    FREE Afternoon Bead Tea
    Facilitator:
    Pamela Kearns
    1:00 – 3:00pm
    Be among the first to see the new weekly products!


    Seed Beading Boot Camp: St. Petersburg Chain
    Instructor:
    Pamela Kearns
    5:00 – 9:00pm
    Learn how to do St. Petersburg Chain, a lesser-known but highly versatile bead stitch, and explore its many variations.


    Friday, March 29

    Beginner Kumihimo: Fibre and Beads
    Instructor:
    Angela Peace
    5:30 – 9:00pm
    Learn the traditional Japanese Kongah-Gumi (spiral braid) with and discover how to create pattern with fiber and beads.


    Three Intermediate Kumihimo Braids
    Instructor:
    Angela Peace
    9:30am – 12:30pm
    Go beyond the 8 strand spiral braid and learn three new distinct Kumihimo braids: the box braid, a waves braid and an S-Z reversing spiral braid all made with micro-thread warps.


    Pebble Beach Jewellery
    Instructor:
    Ann Shewan
    12:00 – 3:00pm
    Learn how to drill different beach pebbles and then turn them into earrings, bracelets or necklaces.


    Knotted End Caps
    Instructor:
    Angela Peace
    1:30 – 5:30pm
    Explore how fiber end-caps present a new and innovative option for finishing jewelry projects or kumihimo braids and allow for seamless colour designs or amazing colour contrasts.


    Sunday, March 31

    NEW Treble Clef Brooch
    Instructor:
    Lucie Lee
    12:00 – 3:00pm
    Calling all music lovers! Working with two gauges of wire, you’ll learn how to work with wire, hammer the wire to form and shape the brooch and add a patina to add richness and depth to your piece.

    Click on the class/open session title to see complete information including class description and applicable fees. You can also click on the instructors’ name to see other classes they are teaching. You can also go to the March class calendar to see all of the month’s activities.

Our Latest Inspiration

  • Photo to Beaded Pattern

    A fun little tool from Miyuki to convert your photos to beading patterns

    We’ve seen a number of beading-pattern-makers over the years – by and large, they seem to not be much fun to use, and try to do too much.

    This, by contrast, does Miyuki Delicas, Peyote or Square stitch. That’s it.

    You can also use the Square Stitch option to create patterns for looming.

    The software is online, and runs in your browser, so nothing to download – except the pattern afterwards if you want.

     

    They have instructions in English here, but I’m going to run you through a brief intro here too.

    First, you will need to click on Peyote or Square to start, depending on which you want the pattern to be.

    Next, you will see a screen that asks you to input dimensions

    The maximum size is 370 x 370 mm. I had a fairly large image, and so I scaled it down by dividing the size so that it was a lot smaller.

    However, if you just playing with it, just enter the 370 in the height and width boxes. Where there is text in a box that is grey, it is a suggestion, not a default value, and you need to enter it yourself.

    Number of colours – well, as Miyuki themselves say,

    The larger the number of colors used, the more delicate expression will be.

    Fair enough, but there does come a point at which, needing to buy 2 beads of a colour is ridiculous, even in my humble opinion.

    So you can start with a low number of colours as Miyuki suggests, about 20 or so, and adjust afterwards. One of the things that I like about this software is that you can go back and forth and change things, instead of needing to have it all correct before you start.

    Click on import, and navigate to your saved jpg on your computer. Click ok.

    From here, you have some options to resize and scale and crop. Click on the blue line to resize, and use the scroll wheel on your mouse, or the zoom icons, to zoom in and out.

    And click ok.

    Now you get to modify the number of colors, with a preview of what it will look like. You can reduce or add to the number of colours by clicking on the rectangle above or below. Keep selecting a lower number of colours until the quality of the image falls off.

    When you think it is ok, click ok and go to the next screen.

    It will spin it’s wheels for a bit, and then give you a preview, that you can review or edit.

    Pretty awesome, huh?

    From here, you can edit the individual beads.

    Use the eyedropper icon to pick up colours from beads. Use the paintbrush to apply the colour.

     

    The coloured droplets let you switch to the full Delica colour palette to pick whatever colour you want.

    I don’t see anything that looks like a search and replace, however, so to get less complicated colour choices, just go back a step.

    I do think that starting with a less complicated image is probably a good idea too. Running your image through a filter an image editing software can make the image less complex. Look for a filter or process called “Posterize”, “Cartoon” or “Simplify” to get a smoother image.

    Or, click the back arrow and select a lower number of colours.

    When you are done, click ok, and it will ask you if it is ok?

    And then pop up the slightly scary warning …

    Don’t worry – it will give you the number again on the next page. You can write it down or cut and paste.

    You do have the option to download a pdf, which is a good thing, as I haven’t actually seen any of the emailed notifications from them, but maybe they take awhile.

    If you use the pattern online, it will actually keep track of rows for you, which I think is a lovely feature.

     

    Here I was playing with a much simpler image – beading a picture of beads is very meta.

    Here are the pdf patterns if you’d like to have a closer look. The “shopping list” is at the end, and lists the standard delica number, the quantity and the grams.

    And, btw, you are free to go ahead and use these patterns if you want – if you manage to bead up a picture of my wonderful old dog, do send me a pic and let me know! (Because you know I’m never going to get around to it … )

    The Dude – (my old German Shepherd) Complex 19031501260367278629

    The Dude – (my old German Shepherd) Simplified 19031501474795333579

    Black Beads 19031504040304327490

    If you get stuck at the “simplify the image” thought and need a hand there – fire me an email and I’ll see if I can’t help you out.

    This is a far from comprehensive tutorial, but I don’t think it needs it. The program is fun to use and play with. It’s not like you can do anything wrong, so just click and have fun!