Saturday, August 11, 2007

Bead Show Blues

The bead show was a great disappointment. I thought it would be full of suppliers and instead it was full of what seemed like local bead shops. Maybe big local bead shops, but nonetheless. Lots of dyed freshwater pearls of low to middling quality. Lots of stone bead strands, very few of which were at all interesting. Lots of Swarovski crystal - not that I have anything against it, I sometimes use it, but you can find it everywhere. There were only a couple of dealers who had cabs and only one had cabs worth buying, though even they weren't anything really special. Nevertheless I found a few things to take home.

My favorite stone, right now at least, is blue chalcedony and I especially love a blue chalcedony druzy. I picked up a quite nice strand of good sized ones, some botryoidal, that will make excellent pendants.

I also bought several other strands: striped agate teardrop beads
teeny 1-1.5mm peachy pearls, small 3mm silver grey pearls, small labradorite teardrops - these I'm going to use as chain substitutes for some of my silver pendants

five different kinds of vintage lucite beads - I have a retro streak that doesn't really fit with the style of jewelry I'm making now and that no one else seems to be interested in because every retro piece I've made has failed to sell - but why let that stop me?
four very small cabs: three white opal and one pink tourmaline - opal is my birthstone and these not very flashy ones remind me of a pendant I had as a child

and a hank of silk cords - scrumptious colors.

Grand total? My lips are sealed.

There's one other thing I bought that I'm really excited about: a Paraiba tourmaline crystal that hasn't been polished. It's pink and blue and frosty and absolutely gorgeous. It also cost way too much and is responsible for putting me over my self-imposed spending limit for the show. These pictures don't really show how luminous it is.

Maybe this is just buyer's remorse (not an a usual affliction for me) but, I've been reading a little about Paraiba tourmalines in the couple of hours since buying it and I'm starting to think that it might not actually be one. It looks suspiciously like this regular tourmaline.

(This picture is in the public domain and comes from Wikipedia and you can see it in context here.) True, this one's not frosty, but that might just mean it's been polished. However, the non-pink areas on mine are more blue than green and Paraiba tourmalines are known for being more blue than green, so I'm not going to worry about it. My new tourmaline is a beautiful piece of rock and I've already started sketching ideas for how to use it - another example of "love the stuff".


PamperingBeki said...

Sorry it was a disappointment. :(

Still looks like you got a few good things.

cyberpenguin said...

As a fellow jewelry designer, I can totally relate to your experience. ;-) Did you go to the big Gem & Jewelry show? My friend invited me to it, but I decided to pass, as I've already got more jewelry gems & supplies than I know what to do with! I'd love to see what you make with your new purchases. Hope you post the pictures!

TrueMirage said...

no, cyber, I haven't been to any big gem & jewelry shows - that's what I really want to do. I'm sure I have more cabs and beads than I need, but then I also never seem to have exactly what I want when I want it.

*marci* said...

I'm not sure which show this was, but I can relate. Last show I went to was a bust as well, I didn't come close to breaking the bank, which is unusual for me. :)

I'm a vintage lucite junkie - so love the stuff in the pic (think I've got some of that too). Will be back to visit and see what comes of it.

A fellow NJ Etsian - aka marcinyc.