Monday, January 23, 2017

Instructions for the Bead Soup Blog Party :: Bead Hoarder Edition (warning - long but important)

Hello Bead Soup folks!

This quotation, found at Picmonkey, says a lot about how I've been feeling about this resurrection of the Bead Soup Blog Party. I firmly believe that no matter what kind of bead is handed to me, I can find a way to mix it with my own beads and make something beautiful.

The reason I chose this BSBP to be a Bead Hoarders edition is because 2016 was made with not much beauty and a whole lot of horrible. A crazy election no matter which side you were on; horrific events throughout the world; deaths of many icons (which made me realize how old *I* am); loved ones and friends passing away or getting very ill -- all in all, it was a crap year.

I would like to start 2017 by opening our hearts to hope and beauty and true gift-giving. I don't want people to send just anything, but something they love and would imagine brightening the day of someone. The beads do not have to be expensive, but should be exceptional in some way -- something you would be proud to see in Belle Armoire Jewelry magazine, for instance. In fact, the necklace you see on the Bead Soup poster is a piece I made for Belle Armoire Jewelry, and it has several hoarded beads ... the fossil, the art bead, the carved turquoise. No, you don't have to send a handmade bead. It just needs to be special, probably hanging out with a bunch of your favorite beads.

I want this to feel like a true giving of the heart. Paying love forward to a person you may not even know. Acceptance of what you receive because every single one of you is an artist and could string popcorn and make it wonderful. You're allowed to use your own beads in your design, including your own hoarded beads (because I know you have more than one!)

For BSBP :: Bead Hoarders edition, you do NOT need to send a clasp or coordinating beads unless you want to. It doesn't need to be handmade, but must be special.  

The only bead that has to be used in your design is the HOARDED bead you were given. I know that everyone has different spending abilities and different stashes, but I also know that everyone has something they love and are hoarding, and all of you could work with anything. I believe that.

Anything you see in the pictures above or below are good examples.
Some are spendy, some are not. You don't have to be rich to participate!

Each Round Rabbit bead is limited edition but affordable. Just one of these would be perfect to send.

Beads by Joan Miller. Single pendants are less expensive, sets are more. You are allowed to break up sets and send a one or two or however many from a large strand.

This is a relatively inexpensive set that is allowed. I own these, in fact. A netsuke carved koi fish bead ($12, but the vintage ones are in the hundreds and up) and two wooden vintage beads I picked up for less than $5 at a show.

I chose these beads for my Bead Soup Book, and they're made by Melanie Brooks of Earthenwood Studios. This set includes a toggle, but again, you are not required to send a clasp. In this case, this collection was affordable and sending the toggle filled it out.

And now a couple of collages of beads I have hoarded,
all types, all prices, 
art beads, vintage, and commercial.

Top row, lampwork
Second row, three 16" strands of turquoise; Tibetan beads
Third row, vintage beads and clasp; enameled beads

First row, Tagua nut beads
Second row, polymer pendant; lampwork with hand knotted bail
Third row, ceramic set; polymer clay with riveted tag

Summing up:

1) Most important on the list -- give from the heart.

Start 2017 with a good deed, and be gracious with what you receive. There is no need for the partners to talk about colors or styles as this is a blind trade. This makes it easier for you to give from the heart -- you won't find yourself judging the other person's work or stash if you choose your beads without knowing a thing about your partner.

You can choose your bead NOW and box it up. In fact, I recommend it.

2) You do not need to send a clasp or coordinating beads, and if one is sent, you do not have to use it, or can use it in another piece you make with your own beads. If you are sent a single spectacular bead, you can make more than one piece from your OWN hoarded beads, as long as you use the given bead first and show it first.

3) You must write a note that tells who made the bead (if you know), the material (glass, clay, etc) or type of gemstone, and why you hoarded it.

So, there's the why and what for the BSBP -- making something beautiful in a world that hasn't been for a while, and trying to unify a small piece of this world by pairing partners and getting to know each other, and finally, giving freely of something you love.

Passing on love, creating with love, and feeling good simply because of the beauty of beads.

As I've shown above, you don't have to send a $75 bead. You can, but above all, you cannot be mad if you don't get one back.

Now to how to join! 

Crucial dates (although, due to health, things may (MAY) swing a bit to give extra time).

1) Right after the stroke of midnight on Saturday, January 28th, come to THIS SITE to fill out a form. DO NOT go to the comment section and say, "I want to join!"  By filling out the form, I get all the information I need on an Excel spreadsheet that I can then use in a dozen ways. It's easy -- takes about 2 minutes.

2) Throughout the day and probably through Sunday, I will enter your name and your blog name on a new page. This is how you know you're in. Use CTRL-F on a PC to open a box to type in your name if you don't see it immediately. You can contact me after Sunday if you used the form to sign up but do not see your name.

3) I first created this jewelry challenge as a blog hop -- a way to encourage others to write more and show more on their blogs. Since then, dozens of other venues have become popular. I would prefer you post on your blog, as this gives you the maximum room to write and show multiple pictures. However, this year, if you don't have a blog, I am allowing Pinterest as a venue. If you have a blog, you can also put the same information on your Pinterest page and show that link on your blog. Blogs first, though, please! More on that later this week.

4) As soon you get your partner information, contact each other. Friend each other (and me!) on Facebook, as messages on Facebook that are meant for a person who is NOT friended end up in the "Other" folder and you can miss it. I didn't even know about that folder for years! As I suggested above, you should already have chosen the bead or beads you want to send. The only reason I can see for changing out the bead is if I paired you with the person who MADE that bead.

5) ALL beads need to be in the mail by February 14th, Valentine's Day. YES, I know that's a short period of time between partner reveal, but if you followed my suggestion of boxing up your beads NOW, all will be well. Also, I will do my best to put out the partner list before February 11th. I gave myself extra time in case I hit a snag.

6) And finally, you will reveal your creation on Saturday, March 25th on your blog or Pinterest.  I know the date can make international shares a bit tight (which is why I suggested to box up your beads now), but my birthday is the 29th of March, and I wanted to celebrate. April 1st is the anniversary of the death of a friend, and I can't celebrate then. Much later, and it becomes show season.

I know this is a LOT of words and pictures to digest, but if you participated in any of my hops before, you know this is really basically the same, but with a twist of what to send and why I chose the theme. I want this to be fun and not stressful -- there's too much stress in the world anyway, right? If you have any questions, you can email me or message me on Facebook. It would also be a good idea to join the Bead Soup Cafe, a Facebook group that gets quit chatty and fun during Bead Soup season!

In Parting: Main Things To Do

Decide on what bead or beads you want to send and box them up to ship with the note inside. 

Secondly, mark your calendar for THIS SATURDAY for sign up! From midnight o'one to midnight exactly (all day Saturday) the sign up sheet will be open.  I will be listing people's blogs on my page in the order in which they signed up. 

I'll be writing much shorter posts that will help walk you through the entire process as we go along. I will have a sidebar blog button for you very soon!

Let's make 2017 
a beautiful year!


  1. Love, love, ❤️! I'm going to go through my special beads tomorrow.

  2. Interesting, sure, I am in. They have to be hoarded bead ( could be for sentimental reasons too) and not only art beads right? For e.g the turquoise and Tibetan beads that you have shown are mass manufactured .

    1. No, they do not have to be art beads. The turquoise I thought was special because of the way they're cut, and I just flat out love Tibetan beads. In the BSBP poster, the dish of pink quartz, phrenite, and silver doesn't have an art bead -- I loved the cut and chunkiness of the phrenite.

    2. I sometimes hoard gemstones, sometimes they are so pretty and just inspire creativity. This will be an interesting hop!

  3. Oh, and I used "hoarding" as a term in two "bead hoard"-specific hops, where I challenged people to go through their stash and finally use that special bead or bead set they'd been hanging on to for whatever reason (they were expensive, they were sentimental, they were waiting for the right moment, etc) you don't have to send something you've held onto for ten years,'s about what makes the bead worth it.

  4. Oh, and I used "hoarding" as a term in two "bead hoard"-specific hops, where I challenged people to go through their stash and finally use that special bead or bead set they'd been hanging on to for whatever reason (they were expensive, they were sentimental, they were waiting for the right moment, etc) you don't have to send something you've held onto for ten years,'s about what makes the bead worth it.

  5. I LOVE THIS TWIST!!! I am sooo EXCITED about this hop!!! I agree, let's make 2017 BEAUTIFUL!!!

  6. I can't wait! I'm excited to see what everyone creates with their "hoarded" beads.

  7. This is a great idea! Can't wait to join in!

  8. Anonymous2:42 PM

    I am so glad you are feelibg better!!

  9. I feel a little confused. So I can buy a bead from you (or my local bead store) and send it? I don't quite understand how that satisfies the criteria. Isn't the point to send a hoarded special bead that has been in our collection?

  10. Good comment. Yes, the idea is to send a bead you love that you own. However, I've had a number of people ask about my own bead hoard that I'm slowly destashing. For instance, someone asked if they could buy any and all Jade Scott components I have because while they've hoarded them, when she suddenly quit making beads, people have been seeking them that's why I put that out there. I have a number of bead sets that are either difficult to find or the person doesn't make them any longer. I have a scary hoard. But absolutely, the idea is to give of your own, and it does not have to be handmade, but special (like the turquoise, the Tibetan, the tagua nuts, and the vintage metal beads in the collages.

    I hope that helps!

  11. SO excited to be a part of this hop. Thank you for this long and informative post. It`s the first time for me so am a bit confused, but reading through this post has eased my mind a bit. :)

  12. I'm anxious to participate! Have been reading the reveals for a couple of years now. It's fun to see what was given and what was actually made from what was sent. Such different ideas. I love it. Thank you for including me. ~ Babette

  13. Hi Lori, Thanks for doing this as it has always been so much fun. Where can we find the sidebar blog button? Thanks again.


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