Thursday, August 14, 2008

Remembering the 2008 Tucson Gem Show!

If you are like me you went to shows until you couldn't walk anymore!!!! Unfortunately that doesn't mean that you saw everything or that you remembered to take photos...for the Mineral folks out there we have GOOD NEWS!!!

The folks at the Mineralogical Record have produced a wonderful LARGE coffee table book with the entire "American Mineral Treasures" collection. With amazing color photos that allow you to see some of the minerals that were on display in a much closer and more detailed manner.

American Mineral Treasures

by Gloria A. Staebler and Wendell E. Wilson (editors)
Hardcover, 354 pages
1 edition, 2008
Published by Lithographie, LLC
Dimensions 9 X 12 (inches)
Price $85.00

American Mineral Treasures is the long-awaited book inspired by the 2008 Tucson Gem & Mineral Show's massive exhibit project featuring the best specimens from the 44 greatest mineral localities in the United States. Editors Gloria Staebler of ExtraLapis English and Wendell Wilson of The Mineralogical Record have worked with over 40 authors to produce a stunning and fascinating review of all of the localities, abundantly illustrated with beautiful specimen photography and filled with personal collecting stories and naratives. Apollo Astronaut Harrison Schmitt (the only geologist ever to walk on the moon) leads off the book with a Foreword about the thrill of field collecting, Wendell Wilson provides an introductory review of the history of mineral collecting in the United States, and Gene Meieran provides an Afterword about the history and development of this extraordinary publishing project. This book is one of those rare milestones in the history of mineral publishing that every mineral collector will have to own.

...and if you purchase this beautiful edition through the Mineralogical Record there is a great freebie:

Each buyer who orders from this website will receive a special numbered framing print of one of Wendell Wilson's unique artworks depicting a fantasy collecting scene. This print is available nowhere else, and will be given only to retail buyers of the book through the Mineralogical Record.

What's Hot In Tucson


2008 Published by BlueCap Productions

Dimensions 5.4 x 7.5 (inches)Price $29.99

What's Hot in Tucson 2008

by Bryan Swoboda

Moderator Dave Wilber returns to the Greatest Show on Earth (at least as far as the mineral world is concerned), the fabulous Tucson Show, in February 2008. Bryan Swoboda and his video crew spent three full weeks in Tucson following Dave around as he visited dealers and exhibitors throughout the city to uncover "What's Hot in Tucson." This entertaining and fascinating 2-DVD set (4 hours running time!) shows a wide range of beautiful mineral specimens accompanied by Dave's interviews with dealers and collectors.

And this year the Tucson Gem and Mineral Society mounted an unprecedented, once-in-a-lifetime series of exhibits of "American Mineral Treasures" from museums and private collections worldwide. This DVD set provides a few highlights of those exhibits and, together with the May-June 2008 "American Mineral Treasures Issue" of the Mineralogical Record devoted to the exhibits, and the lavishly illustrated 354-page "American Mineral Treasures" book on all of the localities represented in the exhibits, will serve as a permanent record of this great show.

Even if you attended the show, you'll want to watch this video to relive the experience--and see all the things you missed!

What's Hot In Tucson is available from the Minerological Record at:

Now I know that some of you are saying - I make jewelry - or I collect faceted gems I'm not so interested in the whole mineral thing....

Well you need to get interested...

  • new gem locals are announced in the mineral field long before they are cut into faceted presentations

  • today's mineral sample may be tomorrow's jewelry trend

  • knowledge about the actual mineral name of a gem as opposed to falling into the "trade name" trap makes you and your customers smarter

  • most of today's NEW gemstones are already being collected as specimens

  • a mineral specimen is a beautiful addition to a jewelry display and it can educate your clientele.

So - give it a try - there is so much out there that is geared to newbies and women are having a huge influence in today's mineral world. In Tucson in 2008 there was a program geared specifically to Women in Mineral Collecting which featured CO-Desautels Award Winner Gail Spann! Gail is a caring and helpful collector who is active on several online forums.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

It's Time To Start Thinking About Tucson!

The questions are starting to pop up on the forums...
Any clues about what to see at the Tucson Gem Show?
How do I find a good place to stay?

So, with permission I am printing Deborah Benson's response from Sharilyn Miller's Yahoo Group "Bead On A Wire"!

Tucson 2009 Bead Gem Show
If you like crystals, do sign up for a class with Swarovski. The value for the class fee is amazing. You pay about 1/2 what you normally would for the instructor/class kit combination. And the display they have from their annual contest is so inspiring. Don't miss Rio Grande's show. They always have new tools to demonstrate. Their classes, like Swarovski, deliver more than you would normally get. Both Swarovski and Rio are off the beaten track (Swarovski is at the far northwest of Tucson and Rio is at the far east end) but worth the effort to get there. Sign up in December to be sure you get a spot in the class.

To Bead True Blue has a fabulous assortment of vendors, some strictly retail, but others both wholesale and retail. It's a great place to see trends and meet people whose products you're probably using or emulating or you want to take a class from. I always ask my store owner to go to To Bead True Blue just to see what we should be teaching in the store if not to buy. It used to be in the Manning House but has moved for 2009.

Unless you have unlimited funds, make a plan for what you absolutely have to buy while you're there. That way you can assess whether or not you should buy that wonderful lampwork bead that's calling your name but you have no plan for.

Don't buy Bali silver at the first booth you go to. Find out what the average cost per gram is at a variety of vendors before you buy. Same with Swarovski crystals -- you'll find some vendors selling to everyone at just above wholesale and others selling very much at retail prices.

Do take a copy of your resale license if you have one. It helps if you have a copy to give to each vendor with a copy of your business card stapled to it.

If you're going to have a car there, before you go, go to Google maps or Mapquest and print out maps to the various shows you plan to attend or take/rent a GPS unit. Though there are maps in the show guide, I found them confusing.

To get organized, I put together a binder with tabs for each day. Each day had a list of what I was looking for, what classes I was attending, who I wanted to see, etc. plus the maps for that day. I included some blank paper to make notes on and quick sketches of things I didn’t want to forget.

The show is overwhelming and you'll forget where you got things or what they cost unless you make notes every single night. Take time to update your plan for the next day as a result of what you saw/learned/spent that day.
If you plan to buy a lot, consider buying flat rate boxes from the US Postal Service and shipping things home over the course of the week.
If you like a glass of wine, have one before you go to bed. Your head will be whirling with so many ideas you'll have a hard time getting to sleep without some help, even if you're exhausted.

It's probably going to be 2010 before I go again; so I envy your going in 2009. You'll love it!

Deborah Benson

If beads aren't your thing you can check the previous posts on this blog:

One very helpful one would be... 2007 Tucson Gem Show - Again!
Check out the Jewelry Artist Magazine Feature - 5 REASONS TO GO TO TUCSON - By Derek Levin:

Also - check the links in the sidebar for housing and showguides!


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