Tuesday, March 9, 2010

#TucsonGemShow: The Best Bead Show


One of my favorite Tucson traditions has been to meet up with Marsha of Amazing Porcelain and Vlad of Golem Design Studio for dinner...this is always a fun time...and it makes me go to at least one bead show!


The Best Bead Show is in my opinion - the "Best" bead show in Tucson. IF you are looking for the unusual, unique and hand made...check out their website - most of the vendors at this show have a live link on the show website! The show is open to the public but houses several Wholesale companies. It is partially outside in large tents as well as smaller vendor tents that lead up to the door of the Sports Complex at the Kino Electric Park.


It features some of the finest Glass Artists in and out of the country...from glass artists like the fun and funky recycled glass pieces of Bronwen Heilman at Ghost Cow to the exquisite glass cuffs and unbelievably refined and elegant hand carved glass bangles of Kevin O'Grady all alongside the most innovative glass suppliers like Gaffer Glass USA.


In another tent the unique - hand cut beads of Africa John - this man finds some of the most unique gems and then personally cut beads from them - you can't get much more ethically sourced than that! I look for Africa John at every show (Tucson & Quartzsite) just to see what new stones he has brought with him...who else would think "hmmm, gorgeous chunk of Ametrine - let's cut a bead!"


In another room I found Avian Oasis an Australian Gemstone Bead Company and boy did they have some stunners...of course I walked up to the most expense strand in the room!



Great findings from the likes of Green Girl Studio, Hand Fast Designs by Kim Fox and Bead Inspirations...focals from the hands of the amazing Holly Gage of Gage Designs.


One really interesting feature at this show is that while you are showing your beads, you can also have your finest and one-of-a-kind beads professionally photographed by one of the biggest names in the world of Glass and Bead Photography...David Orr. Nestled in a room at the end of the hallway I found the master at work - I really enjoyed talking with him...and what a great feature for glass artists at this show!



...ok - I am done wandering through the tents and halls and it's closing time - Hey Vlad - ready to go get dinner?
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