Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Bead Fest Philly 2012

Bead fest or Bust! 

What a blast.  I feel so blessed that I was able to make it to Bead Fest, and even more blessed by the ladies that made it so fun (and possible....thanks to Melinda Orr for the ride and driving us around).

Melinda picked me up on her way down to the show.  We had a blast riding and talking, she is so down to earth and real, just love her!  And we found out over and over through the day that great minds think alike (or we are totally copying each other, its still under debate).  JOKING!  There was a lot of joking and laughing and beady fun all weekend between everyone. 

We got to the hotel and found Linda Landig there, with Diana not far behind.  They all got to see my purple hair.  I finally just did it, why not? 

I ended up shopping a lot with Linda Landig, who flew in all the way from Washington state.  We had fun checking everything out, thinking about how we'd use different beads, ect. 

Then we all met up for the bead swap at 4:30.  Here we all are.....

(Linda's photo)

I got to trade with Jan Opernico- she makes awesome lampwork beads, and I just love my loot!  Look at those teeny tiny round beads!!!  How amazing are they?
And I am a big fan of her oil slick style- love that focal.

Then I won a door prize, since Diana and I had brought extra gifts, more names were picked and I got one of Diana's extra bead bags!  Full of the beige tri-connector too, can't wait to use it with some rustic copper!  And I really wanted one of her purple flowers, I was sad when I didn't get picked for the design team....but now I can play anyway.

After the swap we all got to hang out a bit, here is Melinda showing us her new patina...

photo by Linda Landig

After that we got to take Erin Siegel's class Bohemian Knotted Earrings.  We learned to use waxed linen and I just LOVE this technique.  I already gave my earrings to my sis-in-law, and I didn't get pics, but they were cool and I am definitely going to add this to my jewelry.

Here is a link to more information about Erin's class.  She was a great teacher, and it was a fun time for all! 

We also got a sneek peak of the book that Lorelei and Erin wrote, Bohemian Inspired Jewelry. I do not buy many books on jewlry, but this one is sure to get added to my collection.  It is so very well done, with lots of beautiful projects and step by step pictures.  They did great!

Over the course of the day, Melinda and I kept picking out the same the same color beads during our class, great minds think alike. I would love to hang in the studio with her for just one day!

Here Melinda is copying me again (I kid.  I was just jealous that she was the fastest at making the knotted earrings)
picture by Erin Siegel
picture by Diana
picture by Erin S.

I didn't get to go to dinner with everyone, but I am hoping in August I can stay over and hang out more.  It looks like they had a great time. 

I did bead shop while I was there.  The only thing I really needed was some more pearls, stick pearls mostly, in peacock.  But I allowed myself to pick up some one of a kind things I can't really find anywhere is my stash I came home with.

HUGE HUGE pearls.

Giant center drilled riverstones. My first buy, HAD to have them.

GEMSTONES top to bottom- top drilled chrysoprase, stick chrysoprase (can I tell you how happy I was to find some variety in stick shaped stones!!!!!) shell beads, top drilled opal (bouler opal maybe??) and huge giant lapis stick / rectangle style beads.  And that was the smallest strand they had.  Some of them were massive.  I LOVED all the chunky, rough, odd gemstones I found.

Then Diana took me to Hands Of the Hills.  This had to be one of my favorite stops.  Everything was very rustic and tribal, and thats the look I am going for this season.  Here is my loot from there......recycled african glass beads (will compliment my sea glass perfectly), fossilized coral that is drilled so it hangs like lily flowers, and lots of brass bells.  I must have an anklet that jingles with them.  I also thought they be nice additions to my charm necklaces.

It was so much fun.  I cannot wait to get together with this great group of women and hang out again.  There is nothing like finding a group of like minded people you can have fun with, support and work with.  Love you ladies!


  1. WOW that looks like fun!!!!!!! I can't wait to see your new treasures in your designs!

  2. score - in every single solitary way!
    my daughter has colored hair - somehow i became a hair person when she hit 14... creative challenges are good, right?

  3. Sounds like you had a fantastic time! I love your hair, and I am drooling at all those stick beads!

  4. Oh, looks like so much fun! I'll have to put it on my radar for next year.

  5. Awe...great post! I had so much fun with you too! But...aren't those opals mine :-) Looking forward to a play date too! Happy designing!

  6. It looked like so much fun. Your finds are awesome - I am drooling!!

  7. Looks like so much fun was had! Diana treated me to one of those cute little stickers with my buttons that just arrived. So I feel like I could be part of the Bead Mafia! You picked out some truly unique things, and Hand of the Hills is always on the top of my list for shopping!
    Enjoy the day Miss Staci!

  8. Staci, you are my kind of jewelry designer. I adore your style and you are one cool chic to boot! I was excited to have you in my mini class, I knew you would pick up the knotting quickly and also gravitate towards the look and feel of the waxed linen cord! I'm looking forward to hanging out with you at the next show. I mentioned you in my post for the Art Bead Scene blog today. I love my polymer clay heart pendant that I won. It's gorgeous and I can't wait to make something with it!

  9. Sounds like it was a ton of fun! I'm so glad you shared your experience with us so it feels like I was there.

  10. Love your purple hair! It looks like you had an amazing time with our bead girls! I really hope I can get to a show out there sometime soon so I can meet everyone in person!

    xoxo Genea

  11. I am so beyond jealous!!! Those pearls!!! AND Hand of the Hills...sigh I have to live vicariously through every one but glad you guys got to meet up.

  12. I LOVE Riverstone and Hands of the Hills (and your hair!)

  13. Oh y'all had such fun! And what fabulous loot you got. I'd love to go to one some day.

  14. Clearly I need to move to the States so I can join in the fun! Glad you had such a good time Staci, and looove the purple hair!!!!