>Seed Bead Shopping in NYC

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It’s amazing to me how fast time flies! My weekend in New York City went by so quickly, but it was so much fun!! My sister and I went to the Kandinsky exhibit at the Guggenheim on Friday (fascinating) , and the Statue of Liberty on Saturday. Then, we went to see Jersey Boys on Saturday night (fantastic!). And, finally, on Sunday, I went bead shopping! 🙂 

Since I only had a few hours for bead shopping, I didn’t get the chance to go everywhere I wanted. Also, since it was Sunday, several shops weren’t even open. But, I did happen to find two great shops that were open. The first was Toho Shoji located at the edge of the Garment District on 990 Sixth Avenue.

 

traveling beads bead shops NYC Manhattan New York City thelonebeader bead shopping Toho seed beads
In addition to their New York location, Toho Shoji also has several shops in Japan and two shops in China. They carry Japanese seed beads in both large and small quantities, as well as an acrylic & metal beads, crystals, sequins, and an abundance of findings to make just about anything your heart desires. 

traveling beads bead shops NYC Manhattan New York City thelonebeader bead shopping Toho seed beads
I was a little overwhelmed with the selection here – it was much like bead heaven! (Boston could use a bead shop like this!)  

traveling beads bead shops NYC Manhattan New York City thelonebeader bead shopping Toho seed beads
This shop sells retail & wholesale, and their prices are very reasonable! 

traveling beads bead shops NYC Manhattan New York City thelonebeader bead shopping Toho seed beads
I found some Matsuno size 12/o seed beads (which my local bead shops do not carry), and I also picked up a few boxes of Delicas

traveling beads bead shops NYC Manhattan New York City thelonebeader bead shopping Toho seed beads
The next shop I visited was Beads World located on 1384 Broadway between 37th & 38th Street. 

traveling beads bead shops NYC Manhattan New York City thelonebeader bead shopping Toho seed beads
I thought I had seen it all when I went to Toho Shoji, but I was even more impressed with Beads World. They have quite an assortment of seed beads available in every colour of the rainbow! 

traveling beads bead shops NYC Manhattan New York City thelonebeader bead shopping Toho seed beads
I enjoyed Beads World because they also sold tiny size 15 Japanese seed beads in large quantities. They were a little hard to find because they were mixed in with the size 12s, but they are there. There are also many packages of seed beads which originate in Hong Kong. I normally will not buy Chinese beads because they are generally poor quality, but these seemed to be different. I picked up one package of gray beads just to try them out. I also found some fascinating 1x 4mm bugle beads in black and white. (I had never seen bugle beads that small before in my life!) I also found some cool metal beads which I hope to use on my beaded cars & vehicles at some point. 

traveling beads bead shops NYC Manhattan New York City thelonebeader bead shopping Toho seed beads
Beads World also had excellent service. They were very happy to help me find what I needed, and the store clerk told me that they also do mail orders! Just email them with product code and the quantity that you desire, and they will be happy to ship to you! I might just take them up on that offer! 🙂 That’s all for now. Can’t wait until my next trip to NYC. There are many more bead shops there to explore! Which shop is your favourite?? 🙂 

>It’s Not About the Canvas

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Everyone is probably wondering how I am going to finish my beaded White House when it is finally finished. For those of you who are new readers, I usually finish my bead paintings by stitching the beadwork to a painted stretched canvas. Since my White House is quite large (16″ wide) and will be even larger when I am finished, I will need a good sized canvas, but not just any canvas. I want a large oval canvas.

Utrecht boston mass ave MA artist thelonebeader oval canvas art supply store
For the past month or so, I have been searching online and emailing art supply stores to see if I can get a 36″ oval stretched canvas. I even went to Utrecht, a local art supply shop in Boston, to see what they had.

Utrecht boston mass ave MA artist thelonebeader oval canvas art supply store


Utrecht has many canvases in all different shapes and sizes, but they only had a 9″ x 12″ oval canvas available in the store. I asked if they could special order one for me, but largest oval they make is 20″. Someone from the store told me that “The bigger sizes are very difficult to manufacture since the frame is cut from particle board on a jig and larger sizes require more cut outs in order to create a braced frame. These frames can be made specially for us, but it is not possible to do special orders on this particular product group (ovals and circles) since they don’t use standard frames that we can adjust or cut on a lathe in the canvas factory, and we can’t order individual pieces- it is just too expensive…” I appreciate Utrecht’s honesty. I also appreciate the 30% off coupon code they gave me to make up for it! Now, I will definitely have to try their acrylic paints! 😀

Rex Art MA artist thelonebeader oval canvas art supply store
So, after some more internet searching, I finally found Rex Art. They carry 24″ x 36″ Fredrix Oval Convexo stretched canvases by the box of 4! A box of 4 of these canvases is pricey and they will have to be shipped to me. At first, I was trying not to go this route because I only need one, but I don’t think I have any other choice at this point. I know that art is not about canvas and it’s not about the beads – it’s about ideas, but my idea is to represent the Oval Office, and I feel this can only be done on an oval canvas. Looks like I will have to place an order… What do you think I should do with the other three canvases?? 😮

>Beaded Sieve Rings

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Every weekend this year, I have been trying to make new items for my Etsy shop. This weekend, I listed 4 new items! I feel very accomplished! I am trying to branch out just a bit, and create a wider variety of items for the shop in all different price ranges. This can be difficult since most of my beadwork is complicated and time-consuming, but I am working on that…

 

Artbeads.com Toho seed beads adjustable sieve ring bead embroidery Wildfire beadweaving thread
Yesterday, I decided to try making a ring. I had a few adjustable sieve ring blanks that I had been wanting to use. I got these silver plated sieve rings at the Bead Shop in London last year. I am always looking for something new to stitch something to, and these were perfect!

Then, I got out the following supplies:
15/0 Emerald Lined Jonquil seed beads,
15/0 Brown Lined Light Green seed beads,
Green Wildfire Beadweaving Thread (from Artbeads.com!),
Tiny glass accent beads,
Green felt, and my trusty 3″ beading needle.

 

Artbeads.com Toho seed beads adjustable sieve ring bead embroidery Wildfire beadweaving thread
I had been wanting to try the Wildfire for awhile. The package says it’s thermally bonded, will not fray, and cannot be pierced with a needle. After trying to cut a piece off of the spool, I could see that this was true. My regular scissors (the ones I cut everything in the house with) would not cut the thread. I was impressed! And, it really doesn’t fray! It is also very easy to pull through the material! This could prove to be great thread for some of my more strenuous beading projects! The only drawback is that it is a bit on the pricey side… After a few hours, I had created a new ring for my Etsy shop. It is called ‘Tiny Beaded Ladybug Garden‘. I really like how it turned out! 

tiny beaded ladybug garden adjustable ring beadwork bead embroidery artist insectTiny Beaded Ladybug Garden Ring. Approx. 12mm x 10mm.  

I also created a ‘Tiny Beaded Flower Garden‘ Ring! 🙂
(Please click the pics for more photos.)

tiny beaded flower garden adjustable ring bead embroidery artist purple green
Tiny Beaded Flower Garden Ring. Approx. 12mm x 10mm.

 

I think I have just come up with a regular design for beaded rings for my shop. The only problem is, the adjustable ring blanks that I used are hard to find. So far, the only suppliers of this type of ring that I have found have been in the UK. I don’t mind ordering supplies from overseas, but the shipping price is sometimes high. If you know where I might be able to find this kind of sieve ring finding (or something similar) in the USA, please let me know! If there is any interest, I would love to make more of this style ring in the future. Thanks for your help! 😀