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Wondering what’s going on with us at Artbeads.com? Look no further. Below you’ll find the latest sales, newest site updates and maybe some interesting water cooler gossip!


Artbeads Family Special Spotlight – The Pandamanda Foundation

August 14th, 2013 · 10 Comments

Pandamanda Logo

“I’ll never take for granted the air I breathe.” How many of us can say the same thing? Ryan Messinger, one of the amazing employees we have here at Artbeads, lives by the phrase, “Just breathe.” It’s what he and his family kept telling his sister, Amanda, when she was dying in the hospital. Just breathing was all she could concentrate on during those final days. Those two words were so important that Amanda even got a tattoo of the phrase. Amanda had Cystic Fibrosis, a life-threatening and chronic disease that causes mucus to build up and clog the lungs and airways of the body. This genetic disease affects about 30,000 children and adults in the United States. Two of those people were Amanda and Jessica Messinger. Here’s Ryan’s story of his two sisters:

Amanda-white frame

Jessica Messinger was born on July 21, 1989 and Amanda Messinger was born July 21, 1990. Jessica was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis when she was three years old. Amanda was diagnosed when she was four. Jessica and Amanda both had totally different personalities and it was Amanda who inspired everyone she met…Amanda had to see her sister Jessica die from a disease she had. Sharing birthdays just one year apart, they were like twins—best friends—and they shared everything together. They both helped each other emotionally, physically and spiritually. When Jessica’s CF got worse, Amanda adopted the role of older sister and spent most of her life caring for Jessica. Amanda really helped Jessica with everything: homework, meds, breathing treatments, getting dressed, cooking meals and helping her with her chores. Amanda always stood up for her sister when she was bullied at school for being different and obviously sick with CF. Even though Jessica was not as popular as Amanda they were both a little jealous of each other, but in a good way, just like twins are. Jessica passed away two months after her 16th birthday in 2005 from Cystic Fibrosis. The loss of Jessica took a great toll on my mom and she passed away at the age of 46 in 2010. Amanda passed away on New Year’s Day 2013 from Cystic Fibrosis. Family and friends who knew them will miss them dearly. Jessica, Amanda and Mom are no longer suffering. They sing and laugh in Heaven until we all can be together again. Before Amanda passed away, she asked her best friends and family members to continue to fight for her after her death by helping to find a cure. It was Amanda’s drive [that] pushed us to fight against Cystic Fibrosis. 

Ryan with Amanda in the Hospital

Now, after suffering from personal loss and spending countless nights in hospital rooms, Ryan and the Pandamanda Foundation his family and friends started are fighting to make his sister’s dreams a reality and to make hospital experiences easier for the families and patients involved. “Spending the night in the hospital can be draining. Lights are turning on and off at all hours, it’s uncomfortable, [and it has] bad food,” Ryan explained. He and his father really needed a place to stay that was close to the hospital but that could also be their safe haven. The better their experience was, the higher their spirits would be, and in turn they could lift the spirits of their family members in the hospital. If they could rejuvenate their own souls they could be the rock for their loved ones.

The Pandamanda Foundation is dedicated to spreading awareness of Cystic Fibrosis and creating a home away from home for families affected by CF and other terminal diseases. Ryan and his team hope to raise enough money to buy a house close to Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital in Tacoma, WA. The house would be a place where families could stay without having to stay in the hospital. They could cook their own food, sleep in a bed and enjoy the other comforts of home while still being close to their ailing loved ones. This house would be open to families with loved ones in the hospital for any reason, not just those affected by CF like Amanda and Jessica. Although they’re still in the beginning steps, the Pandamanda Foundation has found unique ways of raising money to achieve their goals.

Green Floral Bracelet

Filigree Flower Bracelet

Red Crystal and Fabric Bracelet

Dream Bracelet and Rings

Ryan has been making jewelry to auction off in an effort to raise more money. We’ve showcased Ryan’s astounding jewelry design skills in a previous blog post—so you may already know that he’s a natural designer. Ryan’s pieces are mainly seed bead designs, but he also likes to mix in Swarovski components when he can. Other team members are pitching in with jewelry designs, as well. Jade, a member of the foundation, is making jewelry with a little more bling, and foundation member Jolene has been creating jewelry with more earthy, natural elements. Artbeads Co-Owner and Chief Jewelry Designer Cynthia Kimura recently donated over $300 worth of beads so Pandamanda members can make more jewelry.

Amanda in the Hospital

The pieces they’ve been making for this cause are now part of a collection—Just Breathe Designs. These designs will be available for purchase on the Pandamanda Foundation website (coming soon). “For a while, I never thought about why I made jewelry,” Ryan says. “Now I know. I now have a purpose for making jewelry.”

The Pandamanda Foundation Team

Every member of the Artbeads family wishes Ryan and the foundation the best of luck in their fight. We are certainly proud of him for his bravery and tenacity in fighting for a cure and the welfare of other families battling terminal illness. You can visit the Pandamanda Foundation on Facebook to purchase merchandise and learn more about their story.

Ryan and Amanda all dressed up

 

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Tags: Company News · Employee Gallery of Designs

The Tucson Ten – Round Two…You Vote & You Could Win!

May 13th, 2013 · 2 Comments

Blog Image

The Tucson Ten jewelry designs are in and ready and waiting for your vote! We asked the winners of our Tucson Ten Giveaway to create designs with the beads they won and gave them a month to create. Now, their designs are done and you get to vote on them. Click here to vote for your favorite on Facebook! You have to ‘like’ Artbeads.com on Facebook in order to vote. You can also check out the designs on our Tucson Ten Pinterest board. Repin your favorite and spread the word. The winning design will receive a $50 gift certificate for Artbeads.com! Voters, you’ll be getting in on the prize action, as well! We will select ten random voters to win a prize package filled with fun beading goodies. Make sure all your friends and family come and vote so they can see all the divine designs and for their chance to win, too.

Voting is open from now, May 13 until Monday, May 20, 2013 at 11:59pm PST. Check back on Facebook on Tuesday, May 21 to find out which design won and to see which voters will be taking home their own prize package. Click here for our official contest rules.

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Tags: Company News · Customer Gallery of Designs

Artbeads Artist Spotlight – Unicorne Beads

April 24th, 2013 · 2 Comments

Doug and Lyta

At Artbeads, we feel that individuality is important for expressing creativity. Thinking outside the box— choosing a different path— is what being an artist is all about. That’s why we’re always bringing you new and exciting products to play with in your designs! Unicorne Beads shares this belief with us by bringing innovation and creativity to every aspect of their company. In fact, their game changing started when new owners Doug and Lyta Ho bought the business in 1990. Co-Owner Doug was kind enough to tell the story of how Unicorne Beads became one of the most original lampwork bead manufacturers in the industry.

Marine Diver LC Necklace Idea

In 1967, the previous owners of Unicorne Beads specialized in designing wedding cake toppers and small collectable figurines. While these pieces were undoubtedly beautiful, Doug recognized that buying patterns had changed in the market. Buyers no longer wanted to collect figurines to place in their curio cabinet. Instead, they wanted to make something with their collectibles. So, about 10 years ago, Unicorne Beads attended the Costa Mesa Gem Fair with 10 colors of teardrop-shaped beads—and the magic of their lampwork beads began. Other artists and jewelry designers found their pieces at shows, used them in designs, and word quickly spread about their outstanding work.

Team Picture

A lot of their ideas for different shapes come from customer suggestions and from other artistic mediums. If Doug sees a beautiful design made from resin, for example, he visualizes how to replicate it with glass. One of his favorite shapes in the line, in fact, is the YoYo bead shape. “It’s one of the more interesting shapes…We like doing things that are different,” he explained. With so many different shapes being created (over 50 different styles), Unicorne Beads has about 15 to 20 lampwork artists who contribute to their production from home.

Packing Purchases-FB
Source: Unicorne Beads.

So how does it all come together? First, it starts with an idea of what they want to create. The design is shaped using any variety of mediums, and then gets narrowed down with details to make it just as appealing in glass form. Their lampworking process is a little unconventional, too. Working with borosilicate glass colors mostly, Unicorne Beads imports their components to make glass from all over the world. Their components come from places like Germany, Italy and Australia, enabling them to create unique color palettes since each distributor renders different results. Doug also mentioned that they mix “incompatible” components together for cool results as well!

New Growth LC Necklace Idea

If you’re looking for something a little different, something that will get your design noticed and stand out from the crowd, then you’ll love using Unicorne Beads. “We try to be different and cutting edge,” Doug told us. “We make ‘working’ beads. They’re not individual focals, but they’re not cheap glass beads either.” Which is true—Unicorne Beads makes everything from large-hole donuts to cute bird accent pieces. You’ll appreciate their unique, handmade features and brilliant colors and sparkle. Check out their collection on our site here.

-Marissa

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Tags: Beader's Resource · Company News

Welcome, Kristal Wick!

March 20th, 2013 · 5 Comments

Head Shot

You might already be familiar with Kristal Wick, an internationally awarded jewelry designer and CREATE YOUR STYLE with SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS Ambassador—and lover of all things blingy. We’re excited to announce that she’s bringing her sparkling personality to our team, and to celebrate, we wanted to let you know all about this beading rock star!

British Award Design

Kristal started her company, Kristal Wick Creations, in 1995 and designed pieces inspired by the Colorado landscape that she called home. It wasn’t until 2004, though, that Kristal decided to pursue her passion full time through blogging and the creation of her Sassy Silkies™, beads made from hand painted silk resembling little scrolls. Her resume goes beyond making her own beads, too. This incredible designer was also the editor of BeadingDaily.com and has had her designs featured in magazines, including Bead Style and Stringing magazines. She’s also written books on jewelry making, including her self-published Sassy Silky Savvy and Amazon best seller, Fabulous Fabric Beads.

Matt Fox and Shari Hiller from HGTV with Kristal!

Matt Fox and Shari Hiller from HGTV with Kristal!

You may have seen her on HGTV in Crafters Coast to Coast or sharing the screen with Martha Stewart! Or perhaps on PBS’ Beads, Baubles and Jewels? Kristal has also rubbed elbows with celebrities through her craft—she designed jewelry for the Jimmy Buffet Band, actress Ali MacGraw and lecturer Marianne Williamson. This expert blogger shares her talent with fans, too. Kristal travels around the country leading workshops and helping others discover their creativity.

Crafty-Cafe-Book-Signing

Kristal is also a talented quilting embellisher! She’s taught many fiber art quilt classes incorporating beads, bling and other embellishments, giving them amazing dimension and style. We’re excited to learn all of the new possibilities with beads! Look for fun and new ideas from Kristal on our website and blog.

Kristal with Dolphin

Do you have any questions for Kristal? Leave a comment below!

-Marissa

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Tags: Company News

Swarovski Spring/Summer 2014 Innovations

February 5th, 2013 · 12 Comments

SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS has just released news about their Innovations for Spring/Summer 2014 and we’re here to give you the scoop! This season has been labeled “The Female Shift.” The new image of woman is one who defies labels and takes on new roles. She embraces all disciplines, from literature to science and politics. This multifaceted woman is exemplified by Swarovski through innovative new colors and shapes that break the rules.

New Shapes

Lemon Fancy Stone

Lemon Fancy Stone

The perfect blend of balance, the Lemon Fancy Stone presents a refreshing new design. It combines the classic shape of the Navette bead with the elegant facets from the Chessboard, creating a flawless, streamlined look.

Meteor Fancy Stone
Meteor Fancy Stone

Not held down by earthly conditions, the Meteor Fancy Stone presents its own shape and dimension with asymmetric feel and out-of-this-world elegance. This unique cut will add depth to any design.

Cabochette Bead

Cabochette Bead

Blending the eye-appealing beauty of precise facets and soothing smooth design, the Cabochette bead defines simple sophistication. This round, smooth and uniquely faceted bead is as refreshing as a spring water droplet.

Cabochette Pendant

Cabochette pendant

Like the bead that shares its name, the Cabochette pendant is a brilliant example of bold romanticism. Use it as single dramatic ending drop or pair with another smooth shape for a stylish unisex look.

Crystal Globe

Crystal Globe

With a cool 3D effect, the Crystal Globe shares in the movement of a new definition of elegance, along with the Cabochette. This smooth shape is another way to present perfect simplicity to any design for a flawless complement.

Molecule Flatback (no Hotfix)
Molecule Flatback

The futuristic look of the Molecule brings a new way of thinking when you design. This shape, inspired by the building blocks of life, is a wonderful interpretation of Swarovski’s vision of their “female shift.”

New Colors and Effects

Crystal Rose Gold
Crystal Rose Gold

This soft yet strong color combines the timeless elegance of a crystal with the refined brilliance of precious metal. The Crystal Rose Gold color provides a gentle dusty rose hue sprinkled with a glittering gold finish, ideal for trendy feminine designs.

Light Silk

Light Silk

Light Silk offers a versatile, neutral shade that is as timeless and classic as a pearl. Redefine your feminine designs by combining this shade with both classic styles and innovative new trends.

Crystal Rose Gold Pearl
Crystal Rose Pearl

Likes its crystal sister, the Crystal Rose Gold Pearl shade offers a rich, creamy blush accented by gold. With its vintage feel you can play it up with other classic color pearls or with uniquely shaped elements for a more organic look.

Stay tuned for more updates on this season’s Innovations!

-Marissa

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Tags: Company News

Prepare for the 2013 Tucson Gem and Mineral Show!

January 30th, 2013 · 3 Comments

Preparing for Tucson

The Tucson Gem and Mineral Show sets the standard for all other exhibitions. Open to the public, this show is one of the biggest shows of its kind in the United States. Artbeads Co-Owner and Chief Jewelry Designer Cynthia explains why she always loves going to the show:

Necklace on Display at 2012 Tucson Gem and Mineral Show

“Being a designer, I can’t wait to see what I could find that can spark my creativity. Speaking of creativity, this is the place to get inspired! There is so much to see from the booths (some vendors have some jewelry samples to show their products) to just the people around you. So many women like this time to show the beautiful pieces they made…There are so many colors, so many different types of material, and huge gemstones that my mind cannot stop! And of course, I can’t wait to bring back treasures to put on our site to share with everyone”.

Devin and Cynthia in front of giant amethyst stone

This long weekend is full of exciting events, from eye-opening exhibits (like giant gemstone rocks) to entertaining lectures and seminars (like jewelry-making demonstrations from SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS). If you’re serious about designing (jewelry, accessories or otherwise), the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show is essential to help raise your ideas to another level. It’s the perfect time to gather inspiration from fellow designers and popular vendors, and also a great way to get your name out there with the pros.

City of Tucson Sign

For the 2013 show, we’re sending down a great team who’ll be sharing their finds along the way. Of course, Devin and Cynthia are attending. Michael, the Chief Operating Officer; Cheri, the Learning Center Manager and designer and Sherri, our Product Launch Coordinator will be joining them at the show as well. Be sure to keep an eye on our Facebook fan page to find updates from the team as they check in while in Tucson. You’ll get sneak peeks at some of their favorite finds, what we call , and snap shots of the fun they have along the way.

-Marissa

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Tags: Beader's Resource · Company News

Tucson 2012 Flashback

January 29th, 2013 · No Comments

We’re getting ready for the 2013 Tucson Gem and Mineral Show! Today we’re going to take a quick look back at last year and highlight some of our favorite moments.

Recognize some of these beautiful glass buttons from our site? We first laid our eyes on them in Tucson!

We also got to see Lisa Pavelka and discuss her line of lip balm lids made from mixed media. They were pretty cool. As another Swarovski Ambassador, Lisa gets to share her talent with the community through workshops and help others find their own creativity.

It’s safe to say that if you can’t find Cynthia at the show, be sure to check the freshwater pearls section!

Stay tuned to learn more about what’s in store for this year, and be sure to keep an eye on our Facebook page as Devin and Cynthia will be giving you live updates while they’re at the show!

-Marissa

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Tags: Company News · Just For Fun!

The History of Artbeads

December 10th, 2012 · No Comments

Artbeads has been in business since 1999, and since its humble beginnings has become one of the top online retailers of beads and jewelry supplies. Along the way, owners Devin and Cynthia have traveled all over the world in search of the best products available. Here in his own words, Devin tells the story of Artbeads.

“Who is Artbeads.com? We are a family-run business in the state of Washington that started in our home over 12 years ago. I have always been fascinated with the business of business, and even at a young age was developing opportunities that ranged from selling vegetables that I raised myself to constructing the city’s most popular haunted house for Halloween. Being raised by a family of artists, however, I also developed a fine appreciation of design and have always been attached to the artisan community. Cynthia, who is equally involved in the management of Artbeads, has always been passionate about the customer relationship since working in a high-end fashion store in her home country of New Caledonia. It was this very passion that inspired her to build the Artbeads Learning Center, a place where our community of beaders can gather, learn, and inspire others to do the same. So how did a New York-born me find a New Caledonia catch like Cynthia? In Tokyo, of course! Cynthia was there learning the language so that she could better serve her Japanese clientele, while I was there working in the financial industry. After six years in the big city, though, we wanted to find a place to settle down and raise a family, and Washington seemed the best place to eventually call home.

How did it all start? On a sunny weekend at a craft show in the bucolic town of Port Gamble, Washington, Cynthia’s attention began to turn toward handmade jewelry and I was fortunate enough to meet lampwork artist and educator Larry Brickman, who in a one-day lampworking session reignited my enthusiasm for working warm glass. One thing led to another, and within a short period of time Artbeads was born. Starting off small, we procured our initial inventory of beads at auction on eBay. Our first order was, well, from my mom, but shortly thereafter the volume of orders quickly grew and we began to expand beyond the garage and into the room that was supposed to be our daughter’s. We knew it was time to dedicate ourselves fully to building this business…” Excerpt from the About Us page on Artbeads.com.

As we look back at the year 2012, we must first remember where it all started 13 years ago. Stay tuned for more Artbeads flashbacks happening this week on the Blog.

-Marissa

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Tags: Company News

Welcome to Lassero

December 3rd, 2012 · 1 Comment

Every special moment deserves to be captured in a way that makes you feel like the day it happened. The joyful pounding of your heart as you walked down the aisle, the warm tears that filled your eyes seeing your child in a cap and gown, the uncontrollable smile when you held your first grandchild—these life-changing events played such an important role in your life that they should be symbolized by only the finest keepsakes. Artbeads is extremely proud to present to you Lassero, your new choice for telling a story with elegance and grace.

This collection of beads, charms, pendants and more is made of the highest eminence. The gold plating is of the utmost quality, and every component with crystals is made with SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS. These crystals are set by dedicated hands, ensuring every setting is perfect. Lassero provides elegant additions while easing jewelry designing. Many of the beads and charms feature large stringing holes so it only takes minutes to put together a bracelet or necklace with sophisticated finish and professional flair. Tell the story of YOU with Lassero.

As you reach new milestones in your life, this collection will continue to grow, so you can anticipate creating new memories with Lassero’s expansion in the future. Experience it all now in our boutique.

-Marissa

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Tags: Company News · New Product Introductions

Black Friday Special-Revisited

November 23rd, 2012 · 2 Comments

Today we’re revisiting our history of Black Friday with a shopping treat just for you at the end!

Every year on this day, thousands of frantic shoppers race to the stores to get the best deals on gifts for the holidays. The most wonderful time of the year can sometimes turn into a nightmare if you get caught up in the Black Friday epidemic on the streets. Thanksgiving has marked the beginning of the holiday season in America since the 19th century, and retailers have clung to this idea for market value. Although the term “Black Friday” originally referred to the stock market panic on September 24, 1864, set off by a drop in the price of gold, these two words have now become synonymous with one of the busiest shopping days of the year. The justification of the term came from the black ink mark left on accounting reports for retailers when they made a profit—or the black mark on a shopper’s credit score for getting too much in debt.

This year for Black Friday, shop from the comfort of your own home and order online! We’ve got a massive 20% off storewide sale happening through the holiday weekend so you can save big on your favorite jewelry making and crafting supplies. Although you will catch other amazing online deals after the weekend on Cyber Monday, start saving now with us! Whether you want to give everyone homemade presents this year or are in need of a cool buy for an avid artist, Artbeads.com has what you need! Use the coupon code ZZPILGRIM when you check out to get 20% off your store-wide purchase with no minimum! This deal only lasts until November 27, 2012, so take advantage of our biggest sale of the year now!

If you want to greet everyone this year with handmade holiday treats, get inspiration from our collection of over 900 free ideas for jewelry making and crafts in the Learning Center. Find something to make everyone, from Grandchildren to a hard-to-shop-for friend. Check out our favorite holiday jewelry ideas and winter-themed crafts to make this year.

You can find so much more on our site to complete your holiday shopping. With our friendly customer service available seven days a week, we will be here to answer any questions you may have.

-Marissa

Information Source: Time.com.

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Tags: Beader's Resource · Company News

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