Catalog Bonuses

When I don't shop in stores for beads, I order online, which might make looking forward to getting catalogs seem a little pointless. But I look forward to each and every one. There is something to be said about the print format. One of my favorite catalogs is the Fire Mountain Gems big book. Like other catalogs, it has page after page of beads, string, wire, tools and other materials, but also, sprinkled all throughout are photos of completed jewelry. Instructions might not be available for all projects shown, but even without the step-by-step, beaders can draw inspiration from what they see.

The big book also often contains the color forecast guide shown here, which has a perforated edge so that crafters can tear it out and take it with them wherever they bead. The chart shows predicted fall/winter and spring/summer color trends through summer 2014. I have yet to put much effort in selling my work, but when I'm ready to give it a shot, having a guide for color trends will be invaluable.

Speaking of In-Store Bead Shopping

Where I live, there are no bead shops, so shopping in a store means driving about an hour to get there. A few days ago, my mom and I were talking about the deer skin wallet I'm working on (my first effort on deer skin), when she mentioned a store she's shopped at a time or two (she's a beader, too) that's just about 45 minutes from my house. It's a surplus store, not a bead shop, but Mom said that in the past, she's been able to find quite a few beading supplies there.

I never thought to look beyond bead shops, so I'm glad she told me about that store. Mom and I will be headed that way today. I can't wait to see what it has.

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