One of my favourite local bead shops in the UK closed a couple of years ago but whilst it was open I bought loads of beads there. The owner was a gifted crafter and ran courses on all manner of jewellery making and bead making. She had the finest selection of beads I have ever seen in a bead shop and I was very sad when she decided to close. Apparently the reason was that her husband’s business, the major income producer, was expanding rapidly and in need of help in a hurry so a tough decision had to be made. If I had been ten years younger I might have been tempted to offer to buy the business from her and run it myself.
Amongst her stock she carried a large selection of bracelet kits in all colours. The thing I liked about them is that someone had gone to a lot of trouble to select beads in colours that went together very well and although they would certainly make an instant bracelet I used the strands to make chunky necklaces. By using the best of the beads and adding in my own, along with spacers and bits of chain, I made several striking necklaces very quickly for my expo. Much quicker than if I had gone rummaging through my stock of beads from scratch – which normally would be a total joy but on this occasion I was under time pressure so these strands were a big help.
Some of the strands contained too many plastic beads for my liking but I included some as they kept the weight down when made into a necklace instead of a bracelet. Most contained a combination of semi-precious stones, glass, plastic, metal and resin beads, plus a few spacers.
I still have some left for future enjoyment!