How a Bead Becomes a gEM's - Part 1

I would like to show you how a bead (and I have many!) becomes a necklace, a bracelet, or a pair of general, how a bead captures my attention, and becomes a gEM's!

Creation Station

Where do I get my beads:

I prefer to buy my beads in person. It isn't about examining each bead, rolling them over in my fingers, planning a future's about grabbing whatever catches my eye. I find this more difficult to do with on line shopping.

I have a favourite bricks and mortar bead shop. I have been shopping here for over a decade:

Arton Beads

If you are ever in the Toronto area, I highly recommend this shop. The owners (River and Alice) own two stores, side by side. One store (the original) sells findings, wood beads, glass beads, lots of stringing material and more. The "new store", the one highlighted on their website, sells gemstones, pearls and sterling silver findings and beads. Make sure to visit both stores!

Where do I find inspiration:

art work over my bead table (beside the window!)

My inspiration comes from the beads themselves. I know my beads. I know what I have, and I often find myself thinking about my collection when I'm ready to fall asleep at night. Occasionally, I will sit down at my bead table, and scour through my containers, pulling out pendants and beads until one calls out to me.

some beads

My creation station is messy, and only half organized. While some boxes of bead tins are labeled (wood, focals, etc.) that doesn't mean that there aren't more wood beads somewhere else. I have multiples of all my tools (3 round nose pliers, 2 tape measures etc) and scraps of materials (really, it's the garbage) from previous creations still in a divider on the beadboard (of which I have 3).

That is step one of my uncomplicated process!


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