An eclectic blog about beads, beading and beyond

Sunday, January 6, 2013

A very beady beginning to 2013 - how New Zealand helped!

Happy New Year to all. I hope its a safe and fulfulling year for all.

Proud owner of The Bead Gallery in Picton.
2013 has had a very happy and beady beginning for me. I've already taken to lampwork bead making classes with two very different glass bead artists and visited two bead shops full of delight. These beady beginnings to the New Year have been whilst I've been on holiday in New Zealand in an area called Nelson at the very top of the South Island.

There is a bead shop in the city of Nelson - The Bead Gallery - that is one of the first bead shops here in Australiasia. It opened in 1991 and not only has a huge diversity of beads but is full of bead treasures from around the world. You can spend time looking at absolutely gigantic glass beads from East Java, wonder about the meanings of the symbols on the beaded baby carrier from Sabah and delight in seeing tiny size 16/0 Toho seed beads in wonderful metallic colours. There are beautiful wooden buckets brimming with glass beads from India, seed beads from everywhere and findings galore. When you walk into the shop the metaphor of an 'Aladdin's cave' comes to mind. Delightful enough you might think but to find its 'sister' shop in Picton (just down a beautiful road from Nelson) next to a bead glass artist's gallery made my beading heart zing.

The great bead umbrella, The Bead Gallery, Picton.
Did temptation to buy win out - of course it did. I'll be coming home with some of those wonderful size 16/0 Toho beads, the beads I made in my lampwork classes and a wonderful bead made by Andrew Firth who I took a class with.
A not so good photo of a very shiny bead I made at The Bead Gallery in Nelson under the expert tuition of Michelle
So, if you are in New Zealand do think about visiting the Nelson area - there's plenty to delight a beading traveller. 

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