Learn To Bead

At Land of Odds / Be Dazzled Beads – Beads, Jewelry Findings, and More

Posts Tagged ‘beads’


Posted by learntobead on January 23, 2014








At what point did you realize you were addicted to beads?


People are always saying how addicting beads are.    They expressed surprise that the pull of beads was so strong.    They couldn’t stop buying and accumulating beads.    They couldn’t go anywhere without stopping at the local bead store for a bead fix.    They found themselves intentionally fooling or deceiving themselves about how many beads they actually had, or how much money they had spent on them.


Yes, beads are very addicting.   Even though your drawers are full, you never have enough.


We asked our students, customers and colleagues to complete this sentence:


I never knew how addicting this was until….


…My car automatically turned into the parking lot in front of the bead store.


…I was laying in bed looking at my ceiling tiles and realized they were done in a “Peyote” stitch pattern!


…I made my beaded fish in progress into a screen-saver.  It is all about the process, when will I finish?  who cares… I have this beautiful thing to handle and see as I work.  Such a pleasure! 


… I began hiding a stash of money to buy beads:   “It’s not like I’m sleeping around….I’m just buying beads.”


… I went shopping for clothes, but came back with only one bag – a bag of mixed beads.


…. I used 3 checks to pay for my order – one from a joint account with my husband, a second from an account in my name only, and a 3rd from my son’s account – luckily I had his checkbook in my purse.   So now, my husband will think that I’m only spending a little bit, I can fool myself, and my son doesn’t care one way or the other.


… I  converted my dining room to a bead room, and made my family eat in the den on TV trays.


… I found that despite my long and mostly constant love of fabric – I am after all a lifetime seamstress, having been comforted by the smell and color of fabric stores and the chush, chush, chushing of my mom’s Kenmore machine since first memories – could not resist the magnetic pull into the unknown.  There, standing at the front door of my local craft store with nothing on my mind or agenda but 2 yards of multi-colored backing fabric for a client’s project, I saw the front of my wobbly plastic basket steering to the Northwest (Fabric is definitely to the Southwest) with such abandon that the lovely glass shelves in the center front of the store were in danger!


…I turned to beads for solace and a quiet focus. I have been going through a very hard time trying to keep a very ailing relationship together and when I could have been stressed out and worrying, I spent the time quietly beading.  When I just wanted to go to bed and stay there for days, I was able to sit in my living room with my son and do bead work.  To him, I was being with him and calm; to me, I was hiding in my beadwork and being near him.  Beads have been my refuge.  I have even read where hand needle work is a stress reliever, I am a living testament to that!


…I saw seed beads in what I scooped out of my cat box!  I took my bead work and worked in the car on vacation. Every time I vacuum the sound of beads is heard. It seems every purse I clean out has some beads in it. I find beads on the back porch, when I sweep. It is a really tough decision, when I come to the off ramp which leads to the bead store and I really need to get home! I have more beads than projects for them!


…I gave up a Shoe Addiction for this…it better be worth it!





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Posted by learntobead on June 22, 2013



A BEAD is anything that has a hole in it. And you can do a lot of things with things that have holes.

Below is a list we generated here in the shop. Can you think of anything else to add to the list?

Have you done anything out-of-the-ordinary with your beads?



You can put these things on string.

You can sew these things onto fabric.

You can weave these things together with threads.

You can knot or braid or knit or crochet these things together.

You can combine and wrap and en-cage these things with metal wires and metal sheets.

You can work these things into projects with clay, polymer clay and metal clay.

You can embellish whatever you can think of – dolls, tapestries, clothes, shoes, scrapbooks, pillows, containers, and vases.

You can use these things in scientific experiments.

You can fuse these things together.

You can incorporate these things into projects involving stained glass, mosaics, or multi-media art.

You can decorate your house and your household things with these things.

You can texture surfaces with these things, using glues, cements or resins.

You can buy these pre-made, or make your own.


You can do a lot of things with beads. Most people begin by Stringing beads, and graduate to things like Weaving beads, Embellishing with beads on Fiber, Knotting and Braiding with beads, and Wire Working with beads. A few people learn to hand-make Lampwork glass beads, or learn to sculpt with Polymer Clay or Precious Metal Clay, or learn to solder using Silver-Smithing techniques.

And you can feel self-satisfied and secure in the knowledge that, should everything else in the world around you go to pot, we will all be back to bartering with beads.

And you will have them.

So, beads are good.

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Call For Submissions: SHOWCASE 1000 BEADS, Lark Pub.

Posted by learntobead on February 5, 2013

Call For Submissions:
Showcase 1000 Beads
Lark Publications
2/14/13 deadline

Lark Jewelry & Beading (http://www.facebook.com/LarkJewelryBeading) seeks
excellent photographs of original, contemporary beads in all materials to
publish in a new juried, international collection in our 500 Series of
books: Showcase 1000 Beads. This book is scheduled to be published in
January 2014. The book will be juried by glass beadmaker Kristina Logan.

We welcome and encourage submission of photographs of your handmade beads in
all materials, including glass, metal, polymer clay, metal clay, ceramics,
paper, fiber, plastic, wood, stone, etc., and in all design styles. All work
must be made no earlier than 2010, and the more recent the work the better;
we would prefer to see your 2012 work over your 2011 work, and your 2011
work over your 2010 work.

We strongly prefer images of beads that have not been published previously,
and please do NOT submit images of pieces that have been published in any
Lark book. We can accept only high-quality digital images. Artists will
receive full acknowledgment within the book and a complimentary copy.
Artists retain copyright of their work. There is no entry fee.

All submissions must be submitted electronically through Juried Art
Services. Note that there is no fee for using Juried Art Services. The entry
page can be found at the following link: http://bit.ly/VTfT6E or, the full

Entries must be submitted by February 14, 2013.

All visuals submitted must represent work that is original in design. A
maximum of four entries per artist is allowed, so please submit your best
work. An entry may consist of no more than two visuals: an overall shot and
one detail (or alternate view); the detail shots are not required. The
primary images you submit should each be different designs. For example,
please do not submit four variations of very similar beads; instead, submit
one bead from each of four series.

Important: Lark will only publish photos of entries containing images and
text that are free of copyright or for which the artist (or approved
institution) holds copyright.

I've already received two questions repeatedly about this call for entries,
so I'll answer them here: My model for the work in the book is Showcase 1000
Glass Beads. That means most of the photos are of a bead or beads, but some
photographs of beads incorporated in jewelry or other artwork, in which the
beads are highlighted, will be considered. Ultimately those choices will
rest in the juror's final decision-making. Also, beaded beads are acceptable
as submissions.

Thank you for your participation, either in submitting entries yourself or
sharing the call for entries with your craft community.

Please join us on Facebook, as well:

Thank you!
Ray Hemachandra
Lark Jewelry & Beading

67 Broadway
Asheville, North Carolina 28801
(828) 253-0467 ext. 762

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Posted by learntobead on February 25, 2010


There is a major international exhibition of pearls at the Qatar Museum.   The exhibition covers the range of types of pearls, the history of pearls and the pearl industry, designer jewelry made from pearls.   Unfortunatetly, it’s been difficult to find any images of pieces on display.

The Qatar Pearl Monument

I have been able to find some images of the types of things on display.

Melo Collection of Myanmar Pearls
Black Pearls from Mexico
Mikimoto Pearls
Yagumura Pearl Jewelry
Work by Professor Henry Hanni
Conch Pearls
Harvesting Oysters for Pearls

Melo Pearl

Melo pearl in ring

Snail with Melo Pearl

Nautalus Pearls

Deco Pearl Necklace

Cross section of  a pearl

South seas pearls

Mikimoto Necklace

Yagumura bracelet

Pearl in the oyster shell

Conch Pearls

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The Donut Dilemma

Posted by learntobead on June 17, 2009

The Donut Dilemma

By Kathleen Lynam


Perhaps you can help our bead study group solve our donut dilemma.

Here’s what happened—our bead study group is currently exploring bead woven shapes and dimensionality. How did we decide on this particular segment of bead weaving? Well, we were inspired by Diane Fitzgerald’s new book, Shaped Beadwork. This book has become a springboard for our discussions—both technically and aesthetically. As we work on the shapes in the book, the group talks about the degree of difficulty, clarity of directions, etc.


Last week, “donuts” were brought up in our conversation. No, not the delicious confections filled with jelly or covered with sprinkles. The “donuts” I’m referring to are usually made out of gemstones, have a small hole in the center and are rather flattish.


They fit into our discussion because they are a shape and have dimension. I immediately tensed. Then I shouted out, “I hate donuts!” Why should a particular shape — donuts —  spark such strong feelings? 


Then I looked around the table and other heads were shaking in agreement. Other than one dissenting opinion, it seemed we all had a dislike for this shape.   But why, what is it about the donut that leaves us wanting and dissatisfied?


We talked about the usual way they are worn—knotted with a cord strung through it, maybe embellished with some seed beads or fringe. We were stymied to think of an example that showed creativity and yet still kept the integrity of the donut.


I decided to look through old magazines to see what I could find. I found quite a few examples for it seems donuts are very popular.


As a bead weaver, I love to bezel cabochons, I’ve used gemstone chips in crocheted ropes, but I’m still looking for a creative way to use a “donut”.


Maybe you have the answer.




Posted in beads, jewelry design | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Explore The World of Beads at the British Museum

Posted by learntobead on April 30, 2009




Necklaces of faience beads and pendants

These fine necklaces from the Fosse Temple at Lachish illustrates the strongly Egyptianizing style of Cannanite art of the Late Bronze Age. During this period the southern Levant was under Egyptian domination. Lachish is referred to in the Amarna letters – a group of clay tablets written in Babylonian cuneiform found at Tell el-Amarna in Egypt and preserving diplomatic correspondence to Egyptian pharaohs from vassal kings. The ruler of Lachish was Shipti-ba’al, a vassal king, subject to th…


Necklace of lizard amulets, beads and pendants

Hollow gold lizards alternate with cornelian barrel beads and hollow gold date-shaped pendants. The central gold drop is inlaid with lapis lazuli and a cornelian cornflower pendant is attached at one end of the string. As well as being decorative, it was believed that these necklaces endowed the wearer with the powers and qualities symbolized by the amulets . For example, the fly was seen as a symbol of persistence and the lizard as one of regeneration because of its ability to re-grow wounded


Beaded crown (ade ileke)

Beaded and veiled crowns, ade ileke , are traditionally worn by those kings who could trace their ancestry to Ododua, the mythic founder and first king of the Yoruba people. The crown is called an orisha , a deity, and is placed upon the king’s head by his female attendant. Powerful medicines are placed at the top of the crown to protect the king’s head and thus his future. The veil that covers the king’s face hides his individuality and increases attention on the crown itself, the real centre o


‘Magical’ glass bead

This extraordinary ‘bead’ is made of opaque white glass with translucent purple marvered trails. It is exceptionally large and made in the shape of a bun with a flat base and the upper surface divided into six segments. It has a wide central piercing. The bead was found in 1860 in a woman’s grave. Also in the grave were a ring made from the burr end of a red deer antler, an iron purse-bar and a group of amber beads, some found at the neck and one at the right hand. The excavator indentified the


Beads and pendants

The archaeologist Leonard Woolley found these beads and pendants in the burial shaft and on the floor of one of the first Royal Graves at Ur to be excavated. The objects on the floor of the tomb may have belonged to human attendants, as discovered in similar tombs, while those found in the shaft may have been left as offerings, when the tomb was being filled with soil after the burial. Sumerian craftsmen were highly skilled in stone and metalwork. Beads found in graves of this period were gener


Beaded Neck Ornament

British Museum online tour: Sudan: from the Islamic Period to the Modern World


Painted wooden paddle doll with mud beads for hair

Female figurines were included in burials from the Predynastic period onwards. They were often highly stylized, emphasizing the sexual characteristic of the figure, such as the breast, hips and pubic area. In the past, there have been two opposing interpretations of these figurines. One argues that they should be interpreted as dolls, ignoring the emphasis placed on their female attributes. The other recognizes only these features, and the figurines are seen as ‘concubine figures’, intended to p



Read full detailed descriptions of these and other beads on their website.

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Bead Museum In Danger Of Closing

Posted by learntobead on April 21, 2009

from Beading Daily enewsletter by Interweave:

Help Save The Bead MuseumThe Bead Museum in Arizona is in danger of closing after 23 years. The Bead Museum in DC has already closed; the Arizona museum is the only one to showcase beads and beaded artifacts from around the world. Here at Interweave we decided to help by making it easy and quick for you to make a $5 donation to help keep the museum doors open. There are 90,000 dedicated, passionate beaders receiving this newsletter and together it’s possible for us to make a huge difference. Give now. If you are interested in making a larger contribution, please contact The Bead Museum directly.

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Southeast Asian Beads and Beadwork

Posted by learntobead on April 18, 2009

The SouthEast Asian Bead Circle


This website details some of the important beads and beadwork found in Southeast Asia.    Some of the images are a bit grainy, but it’s very informative.

Beads from Vietnam

Beads from Vietnam


A Thai Pinakol

A Thai Pinakol


Making The Thai Pinakol

Making The Thai Pinakol

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Glass Beads Found Off Coast Of Georgia

Posted by learntobead on April 18, 2009

FROM CNN:  Glass Beads Found Off Coast Of Georgia Shed Light On Spanish Empire

Roughly 70,000 beads said to provide clues to the social structure and wealth of people from the 17th century Spanish empire have been excavated by a team of scientists, an archaeologist said Tuesday.

Since 1974, scientists at the American Museum of Natural History have been digging beneath the Santa Catalina de Guale Mission, a remote outpost of the Spanish empire on St. Catherines Island off the coast of Georgia and “the largest repository ever from Spanish Florida,” museum spokeswoman Kristin Phillips said.

Read the full story:


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Posted by learntobead on March 24, 2009


Those of you who have missed BEADS on Wednesday are really missing a good Bead Study. The whole discussion and working of the Shapes is so interesting. Everyone who comes is involved.
Look at this – they copied Diane’s necklace
…Bead StudyII  Great job Warren
That should keep you buys for a while. – C

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Posted by learntobead on March 22, 2009

Beading Aphorisms

Like the lines in a good country music song, some clever sayings about beads and beaders can bring a smile to your face.    You might see these on T-shirts or mugs or canvas bags and bumper stickers.   


Over the years, we’ve accumulated these “bead aphorisms” and “bead sayings” in the list below.   Call us crazy.    Call us prepared to stencil the next Leading Bead Saying on the next bag, tee-shirt, whatever.

So many beads, so little time.

Bead me up, Scotty.

The person with the most beads when she dies, wins

Let there be BEADS on EARTH, and let them begin with ME!
There’s nothing wrong with me that a few beads won’t cure.

Will work for beads

I bead…Therefor I am

I only stop for beads

This is my brain on beads

Bead Broad

Bead Slut

Bead Queen


Bead Babe

Bead Smart

Bead Goddess

Gold Digger

Craft Chick

Bead Whore

Eat. Sleep. Bead

Certified Bead Crazy

Above and Bead On

Beadiful Dreams

Beading is my Calamine

I didn’t buy my beads.. .I earned them the old fashioned way.

If Momma ain’t beading, Momma ain’t happy…If Momma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy

The need to bead

The Itch to Stitch

Bead Ware

Better w/ beads

Bead all you can bead

To bead or not to bead

Bead happy

Bead different

Don’t Worry, Bead Happy!

She’s One Bead Shy Of A Necklace
Beadin’ My Brains Out
You toucha my beads, I breaka yu face.
So many beads, so little time.

Bead Ho

Bead Soup

If you find a bead on a fence post, it didn’t get there by accident.

I never met a bead I didn’t like

Bead envy.

I’m Beadalicious!
Life is Beads!
I’m Bead-a-rific!
My Kingdom for a Bead

Tis better to have beaded and failed, than never to have beaded at all

Bead until it hurts

Beading is its own reward

Don’t bead everything you see

If all else fails, bead

It’s not easy being a bead goddess

Dare to bead great!

Got beads!

Time and beads wait for no one

God could not be everywhere, and therefore He made beaders

A beader cannot fail; it is a success to be one

Beading washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life

Beading holds the universe together

Some of my best friends are beaders

I find I can write much better with beads

Arguments with beads are rarely productive

Beaders of a kind flock together

To thine own beads be true

You never lose by beading


Why can’t we all just bead along?

Just let me bead

Bead Nutz

50 Ways To Bead Your Lover



Can you think of any other clever turns of bead-phrases?  If so let us know…. 

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Hot Links – by Connie Welch

Posted by learntobead on March 7, 2009

This weeks must-see hot links:


…BEAD STUDY « Learn To Bead Great write up of Wed. Bead studies
Etsy :: SusiMakesStuff :: Susi Makes Stuff  Susi has a space on Etsy LOOKS GOOD
Regifting Robin  If you can figure this out – let me know

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