Blog for Beaders

A creative place to share jewelry making information, ideas, and inspiration! Hosted by Artbeads


Top Rated Products

Check out what everyone’s raving about at This list of beads, findings and charms have received top ratings by your fellow jewelry designers and crafters based on our five gold bead scale. To make this list each item must have received high marks for quality, value and appearance.

We would love to hear how you rate our products too. Share your opinion by writing a product review. Or for all product reviews for, view our ratings page.

Artbeads Goody Jar Giveaway!

January 25th, 2012 · 389 Comments

This contest is now closed. Thank you all for participating and congratulations to our winner! Click here to view our winner post.

Did you miss out on taking a trip to the 2012 Gem and Mineral Show in Tucson this year? Don’t worry! You may still get your hands on some of the coolest beads, findings and other goodies available at one of the world’s biggest shows. Follow the Artbeads crew on our Facebook event page and the blog as they discover fun new items by browsing through thousands of tables, booths, rooms, nooks and crannies, cherry picking a few items to place into a goody jar as they go. Over one crazy, exhausting and exhilarating week, you will see the jar gradually fill with an eclectic mix of beads and other fun stuff.

Now that we’re back, take a look at the full jar above and guess at the number of items we’ve stuffed into the jar. If your guess comes closest to the actual number, you win the jar! Guess it exactly and you will also win a $100 gift certificate! You can see the progress of the growing jar below, but be sure to look above for the final fill.

To enter the contest, just fill out the short survey below! One entry per person, please. Make sure to scroll to the bottom of the survey and click the “done” button.

Create your free online surveys with SurveyMonkey, the world’s leading questionnaire tool.

This contest runs until today, February 5, 2012 and ends Wednesday, February 8, 2012 at Noon PST. Winners will be announced Thursday, February 9. Must be 18 or older to enter. This contest is void where prohibited by law and open to US and Canada residents only excluding Quebec. No purchase necessary. In the event of a tie, one winner will be randomly selected. Winner will be notified by e-mail.

Good luck to everyone!


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Tags: Just For Fun! · New Product Introductions · Top Rated Products

Pantone Fall 2011 Colors

August 5th, 2011 · No Comments

Be ahead of the curve for Fall by knowing what’s hot in fashion! Pantone has released its choice colors for the Fall 2011 season, and the choices are nothing short of inspirational. You will still see remnants of Spring’s hot color Honeysuckle, but Fall focuses more on a romantic and warm sensation. There are a lot of neutral hues and a couple of surprising deep tones. Mix and match these colors in a variety of ways to create fashionable fall jewelry!

Bamboo -warm yellow with green undertone — Try Swarovski’s Light Topaz

Emberglow -emanates a warm, glowing fire –Try Swarovski’s Padparadscha

Honeysuckle -Continuity from Spring — Try Swarovski’s Indian Pink

Phlox -deep purple color — Try Swarovski’s Amethyst

Cedar -mid-tone neutral green — Try Swarovski’s Olivine

Deep Teal -blue-toned green — Try Swarovski’s Blue Zircon

Coffee Liqueùr-rich brown/alternative to black — Try Swarovski’s Mocca

Nougat -camel tan — Try Swarovski’s Smoky Quartz

Orchid Hush -gray with purple undertones — Try Swarovski’s Violet Opal

Quarry -medium gray, almost slate blue — Try Swarovski’s Indian Sapphire

Find the perfect shade of beads to create incredible jewelry and match your favorite colors this fall so you’re always in style!


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Tags: Beader's Resource · Jewelry and Craft Ideas · Just For Fun! · Top Rated Products

Swarovski: A Fashion Powerhouse

June 8th, 2011 · No Comments

Photo Source: Swarovski.

Swarovski has made a name for itself in the world of high fashion, but anyone can wear these incredible Austrian crystals for elegant style. These sparkling crystals come in a variety of different colors to match any other bead or material you decide to work with and instantly bring sophistication to your looks. Above is SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS in Giorgio Armani fashion. This leading jewelry designer has become so popular that it now sponsors the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) award show, which showcases young and emerging fashion designers.

Photo Source: ebay and the in-style boutique.

Even Victoria’s Secret, another well-known name in fashion, has teamed up with Swarovski in the past for exclusive lingerie sets and used SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS crystals on its “Bombshell” perfume bottles.

Everywhere you look, you’re sure to find a hint of Swarovski crystal in the headlines. The crystals are great at attracting paparazzi camera flashes, since their dazzling facets catch the light perfectly at every angle. Incorporate this fashion powerhouse into your jewelry designs to get hot looks you dress up or dress down. Even on a fun movie date you’ll make the experience extra special when you wear Swarovski! Grab everyone’s eye when you walk by with your hint of glitz.

From pendants to rhinestones, we work with Swarovski to bring you great new colors and styles so you’re always up to date with fashion trends. Shop our entire selection to get started! We even feature a Swarovski resources page to help you get to know this amazing brand, from company history to helpful instructions.

Sources: and


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Tags: Beader's Resource · Top Rated Products

Extreme Makeover: Pearl Edition

June 3rd, 2011 · 2 Comments

Photo Source: Cheryl Kremkow.

Pearls have long been known to represent elegance and style, but few are aware that pearls are a versatile jewelry component that can be worn for both fancy dinners and casual barbecue outings. If you think of a simple strand when you imagine pearls, get ready to be blown away! The fashion world has determined that pearls have multiple uses, and we’re here to share with you the new pearl revolution.

Photo Source: Cheryl Kremkow.

Stacked strands have been popular for a few years now. Though traditional white pearls go well with any outfit, with pearls coming in so many different colors you can mix and match materials to incorporate pearls into any design. These are not your grandmother’s pearls!
If you’re looking for new ways to wear family heirloom gifts, mix your pearls with stunning crystals or glass beads. We even offer a variety of pearlized glass beads to give you a combination effect. When you wear pearls, you will always carry confidence. Now you can show off your classy side without looking too conservative. Discover new ways to wear your favorite natural beauties!

Here are some amazing creations from winning designers who decided to turn pearls into works of fashion art!

Photo Source: Cheryl Kremkow.

Speaking of fashion, Donna Karan’s new Fall 2011 runway show was inspired by this amazing piece of jewelry. She titled her show “Pearls of Wisdom,” using soft pearl tones in her clothing line for this fall. Her idea was to show working women that they don’t need to wear black to be powerful—you can make just as big of a statement when you offer soft touches to you look. Most models were adorned in pearl necklaces to demonstrate the power of pearls.

Photo Source:

View our entire selection of pearls to get started creating new ways to wear your pearls. We would love to see the designs you come up with!

Sources: jewelry insider and


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Tags: Beader's Resource · Company News · Jewelry and Craft Ideas · Just For Fun! · Top Rated Products

Summer 2011 Jewelry Trends

May 26th, 2011 · 1 Comment

Photo Source: Salealertshopping.

Summer is just around the corner, so be ahead of the game by being in the know about what’s next! There are a few different avenues to take depending on your personal style, although bright colors are appearing to dominate. We’ll be seeing a lot of throwbacks to the 80s with loud colors in patterns ranging from checkered to stripes, even polka-dots. We have a great collection of acrylic beads in a variety of colors that would work great in creating your colorful summer jewelry. Summer seems to be the time to experiment.

Photo Source: The Cookie Connection.

The other big trend for summer is a natural, earthy look. Materials like wood and shell are growing in popularity, and will spill into the summer season. Wood beads, shells, and gemstones are the right choices!  The idea is to imitate elements found in nature—finding things without structure. Chunky stones are your best bet. Take a look at our collection of gemstones, shell beads and wood components to put together your own fashion trend. Below are a few ideas from the learning center to help you get inspired!

Summer Carnival Bracelet
Tree of Doors Necklace


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Tags: Beader's Resource · Jewelry and Craft Ideas · Just For Fun! · Top Rated Products · Top Rated Products & Reviews

DesignerFest: Day Five – Taina Hartman

May 14th, 2011 · No Comments

Resin is a fun material to work with because it is versatile and durable. Although most resin products seem to lean towards casual looks, Taina Hartman has discovered a way to make resin more fashionable. Her products are generally pendants filled with resin, set in sterling silver findings. All of her work in the end though has its own unique flair. The story of how Taina Hartman came to be known for her famous resin designs begins in Alaska. Taina was born in Alaska and grew up in the Oregon countryside. This may be where she developed an appreciation for durable products. She went on to study art at the Pacific Northwest College of Art, receiving her BFA in painting in 1997.

Her love of nature is what inspires her new creations. She says she loves to embrace the elegant and colorful beauty of nature, finding inspiration for her designs. Along with jewelry designing, Taina is also a painter and a sculptor. All of her designs are produced in her studio in White Salmon, WA. Currently Taina is promoting her business, Enchant Jewelry. We appreciate all of the work that she does, and love to share it with you! Find her pendants on our site in different shapes and sizes and share with Taina your love of the wonders of nature.

Don’t forget to check the blog tomorrow when we feature Patricia Healey copper!


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Tags: Beader's Resource · Jewelry and Craft Ideas · Just For Fun! · Top Rated Products

DesignerFest: Day One – Grace Lampwork Beads

May 10th, 2011 · 2 Comments

Lampworking is a centuries-old process by which glass is heated by hot flames and shaped around a metal rod. The result is a truly unique bead full of life and color. Grace Ma who founded Grace Lampwork beads has mastered this process for the modern artisan to create incredible works of art. Grace is originally from Beijing, China, where she worked on computers for a living. When her husband found a new job in the United States in 2001, they moved to San Jose, CA—and Grace first discovered lampwork beads. While visiting her sister in September 2002, Grace went to a bead show and fell in love with the gorgeous glass lampwork beads on display. From then on she knew she wanted to make lampwork beads. Knowing nothing about the process, she taught herself how to make them. She purchased books, videos, and took classes from Kim Osibin. Grace started to make beads in October 2002, and began selling her products on EBay three months later. She did her first bead show in July 2004 and was a hit. She realized she needed to train her employees how to make her beads to keep up with demand!

Photo Source:

What makes Grace Ma’s lampwork beads special is the dedicated time she puts into them. Each bead is annealed overnight—the process of cooling glass to relieve internal stress after it was formed. She does this because if the glass is not annealed, it will retain many of the thermal stresses and decrease the strength of the glass. Each one of her beads takes 5 to 10 minutes to make, just to ensure her customers get the best quality products. We are proud to carry Grace Ma lampwork beads here, and encourage you to check them out and make them part of your collection!
Visit her website, or read the full interview conducted by Alison Schmidt from The Ruby

Check back tomorrow for day two of DesignerFest when we discuss Fire Designs furnace glass beads!


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Tags: Beader's Resource · Just For Fun! · Top Rated Products

Kate Middleton’s Royal Wedding Jewelry

April 29th, 2011 · 10 Comments

Photo Source: US Magazine.

As a crowd of onlookers rejoiced in the celebration of Prince William and Catherine Middleton’s wedding this morning…we were admiring the lovely bridal jewelry adorned by the new princess. Middleton’s dress was very conservative, covered in lace and silk. Her jewelry matched appropriately. Reported by the, the veil was made of “soft, ivory silk tulle with a trim of hand-embroidered flowers, which was embroidered by the Royal School of Needlework. The veil is held in place by a Cartier ‘halo’ tiara, lent to Miss Middleton by The Queen. The ‘halo’ tiara was made by Cartier in 1936 and was purchased by The Duke of York (later King George VI) for his Duchess (later Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother) three weeks before he succeeded his brother as King. The tiara was presented to Princess Elizabeth (now The Queen) by her mother on the occasion of her 18th birthday.”

Photo Source: Vanity Fair.

We know Kate does not wear too much jewelry, and her wedding was no exception. The only thing the princess wore were delicate drop earrings to match her tiara. Her pear-shaped platinum and diamond earrings made by Robinson Pelham are a set drop with a pave-set diamond acorn suspended in the center. Her earrings are homage to the Middleton’s new coat of arms, which depicts acorns and oak leaves. The diamond and sapphire engagement ring added the small splash of color to complete her look.
Middleton’s look is classic and modern, the image of both a traditional and modern bride. Her embellished tiara borrowed from the Queen is respectful of the past, and her simple and delicate earrings are the perfect contemporary piece.

You can replicate her look at a fraction of the cost. Replace the diamonds with sparkling CZ diamonds or clear Swarovski Crystals, and substitute sterling silver for the platinum. You’ll still shine just as bright as today’s princess bride!


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Tags: Jewelry and Craft Ideas · Just For Fun! · Top Rated Products

Large-Hole Beads at Your Fingertips

December 23rd, 2010 · No Comments

Caspia Large-Hole Beads & Jewelry Supplies

One of the hottest trends this season, large-hole beads have been showing up everywhere. Our Caspia Collection features everything you need to capitalize on this trend and make fashionable jewelry in a snap. With beads ranging from casual to elegant, this style is easy to adjust to fit personalities and personal tastes.

Browse our Caspia jewelry ideas to get inspiration for your own jewelry designs or see what other customers have enjoyed in our new Top Rated Caspia section. To make the cut, the products in this section must have received the highest marks in quality, value and appearance.

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Tags: Top Rated Products · Top Rated Products & Reviews

Top Rated Tools & Supplies

September 27th, 2010 · No Comments

Top Rated Tools & Supplies

Having the right tools on hand can make all the difference in the look and quality of a jewelry design or craft project. To help you find just the right tools, has recently added a tools and supplies section to their top rated page. These tools are the ones that customers have found most helpful. To make this list, each item must receive the highest marks in quality, value and appearance. Check out the page to read the reviews and look at the tools for yourself.

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Tags: Top Rated Products · Top Rated Products & Reviews

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