At Least I Found The Fish…reflections on Beadfest Philly 2011

Beadfest Philly has been over for a week – and my head is still spinning. To recap:

• there were 5 days of classes available

• there were 3 days of shopping-till-you’re broke

I took:

• 3 classes

I shopped:

• all 3 days.

Things I Learned:

• You can make a terrific wire wrapped cabochon in a 4 hour class instead of the 8 hour class I took in April

• I do not like wire wrapping cabochons. I tried. I really, really tried to like this. But it is a very precise, measure-this, measure-that, cut here, bend this, flatten here kind of process that goes against my “let’s wing it and see what we come up with” personality.There’s also the frou-frou look of the finished piece that is just way too fussy for me. (and they all look SO alike….) So cabochon-wrapping, Beadfest -style is being crossed off my list.

• I am not a good solderer. But I am working on this. I really, really, really want to solder things.

• Instructors at Beadfest have infinite patience and unbridled enthusiasm for their crafts. They love what they do, and it shows. (I’m talking to you: Char Jorgensen, Paula Radke and Kim St. Jean!)

Things I Lost:

• some of my favorite tools. I brought them with me to class, and could swear I brought them home. But can’t find them. Could have fallen out somewhere while I was walking around…or getting in the car…or maybe they’re hiding somewhere at home.

• The fish. Here’s the deal: In Bezel Boot Camp, we made pendants with a stone we bezeled, then soldered to a piece of silver. We then embellished the silver. During lunch break, instead of eating, I ran around the vendor area buying beads, findings, wire, etc to embellish my pendant.

Silver Pendant I Made & Embellished in Bezel Boot Camp

One of the things I bought was an adorable Hill Tribe Silver fishy. (Hill Tribe silver is a very fine quality of silver charms, findings, etc). When I got back to the classroom and started embellishing, the fish was nowhere to be seen. I wanted that fish. I needed that fish. (And besides, that little fishy cost me $5.) Searched everywhere – couldn’t find it. Ran back onto the vendor floor, and bought ANOTHER fish (vendor felt sorry for me and charged me less). That fish made it onto the pendant. When I got home that night, I was emptying out my bags, and what do you think I found? The first fishy. (Sort of hoping my tools will turn up the same way….)

Hill Tribe Silver Fishy

The Fish Was Found....

What I Shouldn’t Have Bought:

Bought a cool looking stamp typeface. It IS cool looking…but it’s too small for what I really wanted.

My Most Indulgent Purchase:

I ordered a pair of Craftoptics glasses – in my prescription – with flip up magnifying lenses attached. In red. (I did however, refrain from buying the little clip-on light.)

How Much I Spent:

Somewhere between “Wow!” and “Are You Kidding?” (I spent over $70 just on Swarovski crystals! So many pretty colors! I am way too amused by shiny things…..)

Anyway….time to start thinking about the next Beadfest…only 8 months away…..


4 comments on “At Least I Found The Fish…reflections on Beadfest Philly 2011

    • hey Heather! Where is your bead show? The thing is – I found that some beadmakers were selling at reasonable prices – and others were ridiculously overpriced. And I am one who is willing to pay if I think it’s worth it.

      Very interesting. But at times, overwhelming. And the “junk bead” dealers – too much stuff everywhere.

      Bobbi Helms bh creativellc 4031 La France Rd. Lafayette Hill, PA 19444 610.986.4216

  1. I’ll be at the innovative bead show in Rochester. I’m lucky enough to have it in my home town. I figure it will be a good way to get my feet wet with shows. Get me out of my studio cave. 🙂

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