How to Become a Beadwork Cover Girl

If you’ve been reading Beadwork for the past year, you’re undoubtedly familiar with Shanna Steele’s fabulous Tucson Vista necklace. We’ve restocked the Tucson Vista kit several times, and it continues to be one of our most popular designs. Read on to learn how Shanna became a Beadwork cover girl.

Shanna’s inspiration for her Tucson Vista project was actually a happy accident. As she shares in “Discover Shanna Steele’s Southwest Beading Style,” “This project is my favorite mistake. I had planned to create a Y necklace or lariat that looked like peacock feathers. When the SuperDuos came in, the colors were a bit more Southwestern than I had anticipated, so I went in a different direction. I instead attempted to create a concho-style bib necklace with SuperDuos and Swarovski crystals. But as I wove the conchos together, I discovered that I liked a more simple and classic shape.”

The Tucson Vista necklace and bracelet make a stunning pair, and they were a natural choice for Beadwork’s August/September 2017 cover. When I sent Shanna the happy news that her project would be on the cover, her response was, “Are you kidding me?!?” And once the issue published, Shanna sent me a photo of herself wearing the Tucson Vista necklace and holding a copy of the magazine. She was obviously quite excited!

Beadwork cover

Shanna was so proud of her cover that she framed a copy of it to display with her work when she attends jewelry shows. She shared this funny story with us about the framed magazine cover.

“A customer at a show was admiring my framed cover and said, ‘Oh, you made the magazine?’ I explained that yes, my work had been published in Beadwork magazine and was on the August/September 2017 cover, and I’m a 2018 Beadwork Designer of the Year. The woman looked very perplexed and then said that what she meant was she thought I had actually created the magazine cover myself, to make myself look famous!”

I can assure you that Shanna’s beadwork is cover worthy! We’ve been honored to have Shanna as a 2018 Beadwork Designer of the Year, and we hope she continues to contribute her designs to the magazine. To learn even more about Shanna and her work, see “Beadwork Artist Shanna Steele Invites Us Into Her Dedicated Beading Room.”

Do you aspire to be a Beadwork cover girl, too? Send us your submissions at!

Lavon Peters
Managing Editor, Beadwork magazine

Find Shanna’s designs and kits in the Interweave Store!

For information about selling your handmade jewelry, check out these awesome resources!

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