Do You Want to See Your Original Design in Beadwork Magazine?

My Victorian Infinity Necklace was the first original beading project I ever had published in Beadwork magazine!

Did you know that Beadwork magazine is celebrating fifteen years of fabulous beading and beaded jewelry designs? I can hardly believe it! Beadwork magazine was the first beading magazine that I picked up off a newsstand in Galveston, Texas back when I first started getting serious about beads back in 1998. Since then, I've eagerly awaited the arrival of each issue on my mailbox and I look forward to seeing all of the innovative and breathtaking beaded jewelry designs in every issue.

I took my own leap into submitting my original beading designs to Beadwork magazine in 2004 when I submitted my Victorian Infinity Necklace for consideration. At the urging of my mother, who had been submitting her own projects to Piecework magazine for many years, I sent off a fat envelope with the instructions to my very first-ever original beadwork design. When it was accepted for publication, well, my husband had to scrape me off the ceiling!

Melinda Barta is the Editor of Beadwork magazine

Have you thought about submitting your own gorgeous beading projects to Beadwork magazine? I asked Beadwork Editor Melinda Barta for her best tips for getting your beading projects accepted for publication:

1. Innovate! We see a lot of beaded jewelry. And while much of it is beautiful, the things that get published go above and beyond the ordinary. We like to see interesting uses of stitches and materials and inspiring choices of colors and beads. This doesn't mean, however, that we only accept difficult or fancy projects; in fact, we endeavor to provide our readers with projects that range from easy to challenging, simple to bold.

2. Craftsmanship is key. The projects that get selected for Beadwork magazine are seen and made by thousands of people. They are used to teach other beaders the craft of beadweaving. For these reasons, it's imperative that the projects are constructed in a professional manner. We decline projects that expose too much thread, have tension that is off, or show potential to break.

3. Good photos make all the difference. While we don't always accept projects without seeing them in person, we often start by asking potential contributors to send in photos of their work for us to consider. To make sure your photography does credit to your jewelry, here are some tips: shoot your jewelry on a white background, shoot your whole piece of jewelry (not just a detail), make sure the photo is crisp and clear (not fuzzy), save the photo as a JPG or TIF file (formats we can open), and send any variations of the project you've made (we may prefer one colorway over another). Send photos to

4. Give us the scoop. Remember, all work submitted to us must be original. Even if you only based your design on something you learned in a class or from a book or magazine, let us know up front so we can credit the original designer. In addition to giving credit where credit is due, we ask that potential contributors send us other important background information about their jewelry, such as what the jewelry is (in case it's not obvious it's a necklace or bracelet), what stitch it was done in, and what materials were used. In other words, tell us a little bit about why you think the piece deserves to be published.

5. Stick to jewelry. Over the years we've seen some amazing beaded purses, ornaments, and cell-phone fobs. But surveys have told us over and over again that our readers are most interested in seeing conventional jewelry in Beadwork magazine. So, send us your necklace, bracelet, and earring designs for the best chance to be published!

Remember, if your designs aren't accepted for publication, it doesn't mean that they aren't great designs. Try not to take it personally – sometimes, a beautiful design is rejected because it just doesn't fit with the editorial calendar or there just isn't enough space to publish every design that the editors like. Keep designing, keep dreaming, and most importantly, keep on beading!

There are big things in store for the 15th anniversary of Beadwork magazine! You won't want to miss the beaded bead contest for 2012 and you definitely won't want to miss any of the gorgeous Designer of the Year projects. (I can't wait to see who they are!) If you haven't already, subscribe to Beadwork magazine and be a part of this amazing beading community! And if you prefer to have your magazines delivered digitally, you can get a digital subscription to Beadwork and have your issues delivered right to your desktop, laptop or tablet computer.

Do you have a tip for someone who wants to see their beading designs published in a magazine? Share your advice here on the blog! Better yet, share your success story about the first time your original beading design was published!

Bead Happy,


Post a Comment