Bead Fest Trends, Friends, Bead Weaving and More!

Bead Fest 2018 is wrapped and put up until August 2019 (August 14-18, 2019, to be exact). The show is like “old home week.” We get to be together, walk the aisles, share hugs, laughs, and booth numbers to “something you must see.” And in general, be among our people! We also have lots of great teaching going on around us in the classrooms and the show floor. So much creativity under one roof!

Then, as soon as the bell rings, it’s time to break down the booths, put away the pretty beads, wonderful tools, books, and bead weaving and jewelry-making supplies until next time. You also have to say good-bye to friends — old and new, which isn’t easy. To keep the good times rolling, though, we get busy in our studios putting our new finds to good use!

This year, I found a lot of new materials to add to my collection. To follow are just a few.


Up first for sure will be some stringing and knotting, as I must have these made into a form I can wear, very soon!


from left to right, clockwise: iolite, beryl mix, amazonite from Bollywood Beads

I will enjoy reading through Betsy Lehndroff’s post Studio Notes: Quick and Easy Pearl Knotting Tip to be sure I’m getting these strung, just right. If you’re new to pearl knotting or it’s been a while, be sure to read through The Knotting & Braiding Bible eBook as it has been an immeasurably helpful resource.


I always enjoy checking into the Ranger booth to see what’s new. Some of these inks are replacements that I ran out of during my demonstration but the pearl patinas are new to the Ranger product line and I can’t wait to try them out!


Ranger inks including the new pearl patinas.

My demonstration at the show focused on how to create a simple image transfer and then what to do with it.

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Image transfers captured in bezels then sealed with ICE Resin

It was so fun to share the details of this technique in person, watch people’s faces light up once they saw how easy it was to create the transfers, and then to see their wonder as they learned more about resin. For a free project on this process, read Resin Jewelry and How to Make a Resin Button with an Image Transfer.

Then be sure to read: How to Make a Right-Angle Weave Seed Bead Bracelet with ICE Resin and Image Transfer Button Clasp.

right angle weave seed bead bracelet tutorial, from seed bead fusion by Rachel Nelson Smith, with Tammy Honaman

Ring-angle weave bracelet by Tammy Honaman based on a patter by Rachel Nelson Smith

This bracelet was inspired by a Rachel Nelson Smith pattern which can be found in Seed Bead Fusion —— one of my favorite books.

More “new” from Ranger are the micas which fall into the ICE Resin line.

Bead Fest

Ranger Ice Resin glass glitterand shattered mica.

There are so many directions you can take these products — following Susan in 15+ Ways to Alter Surfaces is a great place to start!

There was so much more to Bead Fest then these few things but gosh, these alone could keep me busy for quite a while!


There was no shortage of Beadwork contributors at Bead Fest. Shae Wilhite, Maggie Thompson, and Agnieszka Watts were there, just to name a few. These ladies drew quite a crowd in their classes and in their booths. One highlight to share — these new components handmade by Agnieszka.

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Ceramic components by Agnieszka Watt

These beauties are perfect as a focal in a design, as a cabochon to bead around in bead embroidery, or to just place on your worktable until inspiration strikes. I bet we’ll be seeing more of these soon — maybe even in one of Agnieszka’s bead weaving designs.

There were quite a few bead weaving demonstrations going on at Bead Fest, including our own Lavon Peters demonstrating Lisa Kan’s Super Duo Spiral Bangle project.

Right-angle weave

Super Duo Spiral Bangle by Lisa Kan, October/November 2015 Beadwork magazine.

Lavon can’t visit each of you to show you how this design is made but you can download this pattern today and make your own bracelet by following Lisa’s instructions. Then, if you like this design, don’t miss Lisa’s Bead Metamorphosis. You can get this book in paperback (while they last) or in the download version.


Bead Fest also brings trends to life — one long-standing trend that doesn’t seem to be wavering is tassels!

Bead Fest

Tassels in all sizes and colors.

If you’re as into tassels as much as I am, you’ll fall in love with the tassels found in the Fast & Fabulous section of Beadwork August/September 2018.

Gemstones are also trending and they could be found in all colors, sizes, and shapes (see one quick picture above).

And one thing that never goes out of style is friendship. Bead Fest brings friends together — old and new. And there was no shortage of group selfies being taken on the floor as well as a few taken at our booth. Thanks to Sandra Lupo for catching this one during my resin demonstration.

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clockwise from front left – Bead Fest attendee; David Pyle, F+W General Manager Crafts Group; Lavon Peters, Managing Editor Beadwork magazine; Tammy Honaman, Editor, Beadwor magazine.

Whatever the year ahead has in store for you — find the techniques and projects you’re interested in right here in the Interweave store. Then, be sure to put Bead Fest Philadelphia on the calendar – August 14-18, 2019.

See you there!
Editor, Beadwork magazine

Find these techniques and more in the Interweave store, today!


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