I've discovered bead swapping!
Yes, yes, I know, people have been trading beads since beads were
invented. I just wasn't aware that it was as organized as it is and
or how much FUN it is!
I hopped on the Swapping Wagon first with Lori Anderson's Pantone Summer 2012 Bead Swap (see my previous blog) and was instantly addicted. I'm still working on the projects from that swap - too little time, too many ideas.
Then I discovered that an old acquaintance, Nicole Weltch, is the Chief-in-Charge at www.beadswapusa.com. Bead Swap, USA has different kinds of bead swaps and jewelry challenges going on a monthly basis. I've delighted in renewing my friendship with Nicole, who was with Bead Babe here in Sacramento. She's since moved to Arizona with her husband and infant son. I'm also been making some new contacts and friends including Lindsay Starr of Phantasm Creations. I'm in total awe of this lady's skills and flair!
Anyway, back to swapping... I signed up for a Person to Person Swap that called for rainbow colored glass beads. Nicole paired me with Chris Schlicht up in Washington. We are both newbies to the bead swapping scene. I think I might have screwed up on the intent of the swap which was to send your swap partner some of each color in the standard rainbow. I interpreted it as sending some of one or two of the colors so that's what we did. Chris favors reds and purples and I generally opt for greens, blues, and purples. I put together a package of reds in several shapes and sizes along with some Tibetan silver spacers, a pewter leaf clasp, and a pewter medallion. I didn't take a picture of what I sent off but I'm pretty sure Chris got the package and will enjoy the goodies.
Here's what Chris sent me:
Included was a gorgeous dichroic seahorse pendant, a wonderful frog bead, pale green crystal bicones and teardrop fringe beads, 2 strands of blue/purple fire polished rounds, some really cool Tibetan silver rondelle spacers, two conch shell charms, a pair of dichroic snake beads and sprinkling of borosilicate glass beads. All very, very nice. In addition, Chris included 2 bars of her handmade soap and a sack of pheasant feathers from her own pheasant. It was like Christmas around here! Thank you, Chris!
The second swap I've jumped onto is Lori Anderson's Bead Soup Blog Party. Lori is hostessing this immense bead swap from her blog, Pretty Things, and has a FaceBook page dedicated to keeping participants informed.
The detail on this swap is that you're to send a focal component, a decorative clasp, and some
coordinating beads to your partner. When received you make a piece
of jewelry using all or part of the item you received. You're to
post a picture of the piece on your blog on your scheduled reveal date and then hop from blog to
blog to see what everyone else has created. Sounds like fun!
With 400 participants, there will be three reveal dates. Mine is 7/28 so I better get busy! My partner in crime for this swap is Stacie Stamper in North Carolina. She's a sweet lady who's expecting her first wee bairn so she's got a lot of prepping to do. I was tickled pink to receive my beads from her. She hit the nail right on the head with things I like – blue/green, hummingbirds, vintage.
I'm already planning a necklace with everything sent plus some Peruvian opal pieces I've been hoarding for a while. Thank you, Stacie!!
What's next? I'm signed on for a Traveling Bead Swap Box with Bead Swap USA. I'll chatter about that in my next blog.