Dec 27, 2015

Ode to Pearls and Gemstones


The Bead Shop in 2008 

Going through old files at year-end, I came across some charming photos of 
The Bead Shop in Palo Alto taken in 2008. I look back with great memories of everything, including the rich and varied assortment of beads; the depth and variety available just 8 years ago is amazing. I think now about how difficult it is today to source real gems and stones and I long for the days when they were still relatively easy to get. 

A look inside the old shop...

Less than ten years ago, I would tell my pearl knotting students to buy pearls as the market was drying up. Really large and luscious pearls from China back then were amazing and a great value. Not so today. Every size is getting difficult to source and amazing pearls in peacock blue and bronze are virtually not being made. 

I can see why the market is moving to glass. It just makes sense from a manufacturing standpoint; glass beads are made from renewable resources, readily available and can be duplicated again and again. Beads from the earth and the oceans and lakes are another thing altogether and it has become a serious consideration in 
what we can source and use in projects.

Our next project to publish in January

So, my first project for the new year is an ode to freshwater pearls. It will publish early in January. It uses my very favorite bead....pearls. What will the next project be? 
Probably something in glass. I hope you like this one...
Stay tuned and happy new year! ~janice








Bead School Now Open

Those tiny little beads, known as seed beads, have been planted firmly into the Beadshop curriculum. To help beaders learn new bead weaving ...