Sunday, October 31, 2010

Bead Shop Tour: The Beadin' Path

The Beadin' Path offers a wide range of beads & beading supplies. Heather DeSimone & Ashley Bunting show you around the bead store & give you a glimps of the beading supplies they stock & the services you can find there. Watch the bead shop tour video!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Jewelry Designs for Fall Beading

The Beadin' Path has no shortage on design ideas! Our design department faithfully develops new, ground-breaking designs week after week. Our jewelry designs are fierce and fresh, consistently bridging the gap between kitsch and high-art. Our innovations are uniquely in the forefront of bead design as we combine vintage with contemporary, metal with Lucite, and color with color!

Our Fall Filigree Beaded Earrings perfectly represent our design aesthetic employing mixed materials. Our full-time staffer Ashley Bunting designed these fabulous flower stacked earrings. She combined Lucite flowers and filigree with vintage matte metal, and completed the look with gold plated findings.

Another great design by Ashley Bunting --- the Harvest Moon Beaded Necklace and Earring Set.  Pumpkin beads and owl pendants in earthy jewel tones breathe fall fashion. The's orange Lucite ribbed round beads make perfect little pumpkins. We custom dyed our Lucite owl beads in jewel tones for the fall season. This purple Lucite owl bead hangs effortlessly from the necklace chain. The clustered earrings of Lucite ribbed rounds and green sea glass beads complete the look.

The Autumn Garland Beaded Necklace dazzles in moonglow Lucite. We are in love with our luminescent collection of  moonglow beads. Create fall-inspired jewelry with these moonglow Lucite beads in greens, golds, oranges, and browns. This look was completed with our antiqued copper vintage chain, a perfect compliment to earthy Lucite moonglow hues.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Vintage Beads: The Best of the Best

If you're not on our email list, you might not know about the best vintage selections when they hit our store, or warehouse floor. We at The Beadin' Path post vintage bead articles on our website and send our email subscribers the latest vintage bead selections, so they'll have first pick. Some vintage beads are more plentiful in stock than others, but they all are limited in supply, and will eventually be sold out. Here is a recap our latest treasures!

Vintage Lucite Beads

If you're new to our vintage beads, it's important to know that ALL of our stock is new and uncirculated, so it is in pristine condition. Our vintage Lucite beads and components were purchased in 2004. These forgotten beads were the warehoused contents of a company originally known as Best Plastics. Best Plastics manufactured Lucite beads and components for jewelry companies such as Avon, Trifari and Coro from the 1960s through the ealry 1980s.

Vintage Lucite Buttons

Our vintage Lucite buttons are often used as closures on necklaces and bracelets, or strung in clusters, in the way you might string a traditional bead. Most of the Lucite buttons we carry have a moonglow finish, a most sought after finish. Moonglow might be the most popular of the Lucite beads, probably because its inherent luminosity is quite breathtaking. Several of our moonglow Lucite buttons are even on sale right now, a rare  occurrence!

Antique Rose Montees

Our antique rose montees are fiercely beautiful. Rare and highly coveted, the rose montees might be the oldest beads in our collection. Made in France, and Austria circa 1910, these components are flat backed glass stones set into a metal fitting with holes. They were commonly sewn onto garments and tapestries. Today, they can be used in the same way, or used in multi-strand jewelry.

Vintage Metal Cuffs and Bangles

Our collection of vintage metal cuffs and bangles have been a huge hit. The 80s retro layered bracelet trend probably has something to do with this! Our bracelet collection is entirely from that era, made mostly in the USA ca. early 1980s. We have taken these brass and base metal bracelets and plated them in a muted sterling silver or muted 24k gold, also processed here in the US. These cuffs and bangles are perfect for attaching glass or lucite stones to with special adhesive, or for wrapping beads around them with bead-wrapping wire.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Sea Glass Beads: Beautiful & Affordable

Do you already know about sea glass beads? Oh, okay. Did you know that we carry a crazy large selection of these gorgeous, well-priced beads at  Impressive. Okay, but did you know that we redesigned our sea glass bead page? Aha! Well, that's because we just did today.  Our sea glass beads continue to be a customer favorite, probably because they're irresistable and they're a pretty great bang for the buck. Check out our latest selection of sea glass beads!

Our sea glass beads are made in the Far East using beach glass from beaches on the East Coast of the US as inspiration. The matted finish and subtle color range evoke the look of found treasures of the seaside. We carry sea glass rounds, puff discs, tumbled nuggets, spine and dagger drops, beach stones, and more!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Big Sale on all Beads & Beading Supplies!

20% off Store-Wide sale!
That's right folks - 20%* off everything. That includes beads, supplies, tools, books and items that are normally never ever never marked down.

Stock up for those holiday events and gifts! Use coupon code EXTRA20 online at or bring along a copy of this email if you shop in the store. Sale is valid now and ends Tuesday, October 12th, at store's close or 11:59pm EST if shopping online.

*Wholesale buyers to the trade receive an additional 10% discount. Please use coupon code EXTRA10 at checkout for online purposes, and bring along this email for store purchases.

Start your Sale Shopping Now!

Offer Details:
Offer valid in both our Freeport, Maine store & online at Offer also applies at our Rhode Island Whole Bead Show this weekend, Saturday & Sunday only. Offer applies to in-stock merchandise only, not special orders or items that come in and are backordered. Offer cannot be applied to previous purchases. Offer cannot be combined with bead-club coupons, or any other additional discount. Offer cannot be combined or used toward Trunk Show items in the store. Coupon extravaganza event expires on Tuesday evening, October 12th, at store's close or 11:59pm EST.

60s Fashion: Mod Turquoise Beads

Extraordinarily popular this season is our limited selection of flattened round vintage Lucite beads. These great old mosaic beads were made in the fabulous 60s decade and manufactured in the USA. Each bead is press molded with unique variations of the mottled, speckled finish, and some even have a slight sparkle of aventurine! Our personal favorite is the turquoise mosaic bead with white and gold aventurine flecks, 6 x 10mm in size. We'd love to see these in a variety of 60s mod fashion accessories for the 2010 fall/winter season!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Sell Your Jewelry with Twitter

"Tweeting? Tweetering? I have to be a Twit to sell my jewelry?"  If you're selling your jewelry, and especially if you're selling it online, you've likely wondered about using social media to help promote your handmade goods.

I have spent a lot of time lately, experimenting with & learning about social media marketing: blogging, Facebook, FourSquare, Twitter & more.  I even had the opportunity to speak at a Social media conference the other day ( on a "Business Success Stories Using Social Media" panel.  So I have been thinking more about social media marketing lately, and how it can be applied to the hand-made market to help jewelry & other designers and creatives further their sales. I also love simplifying things.  So I thought a Sell Your Jewelry: Top 5 Reasons to Tweet list might be the best way to get some helpful ideas out there, about using Twitter to promote your jewelry.

Sell Your Jewelry On Twitter: Top 5 Reasons to Tweet.

1) Make connections

I once heard a smart woman, savvy in social media say "Twitter is like a cocktail party..." (-@ccmaine on Twitter).  If you were attending a cocktail party, you'd wear your finest beadwork, and you'd wait for someone to notice it.  If they asked about it, you might slip them your business card.  But you certainly wouldn't show up at the cocktail party with a fluorescent sign reading "I Make Jewelry", handing out free samples & with mailing list sign-ups on a clipboard on your hip.  Twitter is the same way.  You should tweet things of interest using your real voice: the voice you'd greet friends in. Or the voice you'd greet shoppers at your craft show booth with.  You might talk about things going on in your lives, the weather, current events, or people you know.  It will get out there that you make jewelry & even that you're selling it in the course of conversation & the word will spread.  It takes time to make connections online, just like in real life.

2) Be The Face of Your Brand

Your avatar (or your picture), says a lot about you.  It sets the tone when people are reading your tweets.  Many jewelry designers will use a picture of their beadwork as their avatar.  This conveys that the tweeter makes jewelry.  However, I'd challenge you to share your face: use a picture of you smiling, laughing or generally looking like you're a fun and approachable person.  If you're just starting out on Twitter, I think you'll find that more people will reply & engage a happy face more so than an object.  Of course, you could always model one of your finest pieces, along with that purdy face of yours.

3) Hone Your Skills

By engaging in what others are talking about on Twitter, you can ask questions and learn.  There are free jewelry how-tos posted on Twitter all the time.  A great tactic to getting people to ask you about what you do, is to tweet about what you're working on in your studio.  Or what you learned in a recent class you took.  Or what you read in your favorite jewelry design book.  Give others interested in jewelry and perhaps in buying your jewelry, a peek at what you're an expert in: not by trying to sell to them directly, but by giving them a glimpse at your work via techniques and tips.

4) Meet Other Jewelry Designers

Networking is always good.  If someone is out there trying to make a living doing what you're doing, don't look at them as competition.  There are so many varying looks and aesthetics to handmade jewelry.  Even if your work might be similar in some ways, it is always beneficial to network.  You might learn of a new resource or technique.  And you might even gain business by referral.  Perhaps your friend's bead-woven jewelry isn't what her potential bridal client was looking for.  However, your sterling silver bead wrapped crystals are exactly what she had in mind.  Your friend & jewelry design colleague knows you'll pass along the favor in the future.

5) Your Work Will Be Seen

Even though you're not flashing your Twitterfeed of all your Etsy listings (Yes, you can do this - however I don't recommend it.  At least, not often.), your work will be seen.  And, it will be seen by honed-in potential buyers who are thrilled to pass along business to a 'friend' or someone with whom they have a connection.  When someone is looking for a referral, don't we all like to refer our friends?  Or our colleagues?

A great example of a prolific jewelry designer who is using Twitter well is @SueAnneShirzay.  She not only makes connections & does well with her beautiful line of jewelry, but she also picked up a recurring spot on a radio show as the style maven.  She posted blogs & tweets about what she loves & loves not-so-much, in the world of fashion, accessorizing & trends and got noticed.

So get on & grab your design name.  Tweet good tweets.

Heather DeSimone
My Bead Store:
My Twitter Account: