ABC’s: About Beads and Community

August 25, 2017 , In: Events, General

aka: Beadfest 2017

My pictures are mostly from Artisans Alley… and I know you want to see the loot. It was a wonderful year this year… let me show you a few of my favorite things. 

A – Abundance. I came into BF this year stressed out and needing a break. I was overwhelmed by the abundance of friendship, compassion, and caring. It was exactly what I needed. 

B – Beads. Yes – this IS what brought us all together. Bounty. Beautiful. Beckoning… 

C – Camaraderie. Connections. Community. We all speak the same language, unified by creativity, collecting, art, expression. I am always excited to see what customers create with my cabs and pendants – so glad Helen brought “show and tell”

Helen L and her desert goddess tapestry!

D – Diane Hawkey – one of my roomies and fellow ceramic bead maker/artist friends. 

E – Excitement. Exuberance. Exhaustion. 

F – Friends. Family. Fun. And Flat Diana! 

Beth and Terri from Let’s Bead made sure Diana didn’t miss any of the fun!

G – Gemstones. I bought a few… ( this is my loot, yes it is. ) 

H – Heather Boardman of HMB Studios has been my neighbor for many years. BF wouldn’t be the same with out her! 

I – Insects. Very popular motif this year – from my stoneware moths to Humblebeads cicadas and Summer Wind’s fireflies! 

J – Just what I needed: Susan Kennedy ( fellow AE team mate and bead maker extraordinaire) stopped by for a quick visit as she was taking classes. She brought me a little bag of treasures – a get well/ feel better  treat as she knew I’d been swamped. What a thoughtful gift! 

K – Keep on keeping on. And drink coffee! There are busy spells and slow spells – part of the job. 

L – LOOT! and lemon drop martinis? 

1. Green Girl Studio. 2. Diane Hawkey, Heather of Humblebeads, Andrew Thornton, Tracey Donogue, Ashley of Summer Wind 3. Staci Smith 4. HMB Studio. 5. Thornburg Studio

M – Mermaids. ( see “W”) Marsha Neal Studios! Marsha is a dear friend, an inspiring ceramic artist, and a “connector”. She knows everyone! 

N – Neighbors, including Nikki Thornburg!

O – One last dinner. Time spent with friends we see too rarely. Cars were packed and soon we would be heading our separate ways… 

P – Polymer of course! No Bead Fest is complete without my polymer sister Staci Smith! And Andrew Thornton and William Jones were there representing Allegory Gallery

Q – the Quest for the perfect cab, the right color seed bead… 

R – Rest and rejuvenation? Since it was a bit of a slumber party…. Remember BF is a marathon not a sprint! 

S- Seed beads. Can you believe I did not buy ANY? I made up for it in gemstones…. 

T – Talking. Trading ideas and techniques and tips. 

U – Understanding each other so clearly. Really feeling at home with your people, your tribe. 

V – Very. Very inspired, very tired, very happy. 

W – Weeki Wachee! Yes – where the mermaids are… What a thrilling surprise to meet Julie Komenda – artist in residence at Weeki Wachee! We have a few mermaid people people in common – and shall I say; got along swimmingly? 

X –  Extreme gratitude. I still at times find myself marveling at the fact that this is WHAT I DO full time. I count myself lucky to love work so and to be in this company. I work extreme hours, and sometimes the pay is… well, variable. But I love it all. 

Y – You! Bead Fest wouldn’t work without you; readers, customers, artisans, bead makers, metal smiths, ceramic artists, collectors…. 

Z – Art ‘Zine. From Cynthia Thornton of Green Girl Studio. It is a treasure and a delight! 

*Special thanks to Kathleen Klik since I stole her pictures! 





Jenny Davies-Reazor

Jenny Davies-Reazor is a mixed media artist inspired by myth, folklore and the natural world. A proud Jack-of-all-trades, she concentrated in metals and painting in art school, turned to clay during her teaching career, and is truly happiest when mixing materials in unusual ways. From clay to resin, paper to polymer... Since leaving her ceramics classroom, Jenny is always in the studio: fabricating jewelry, creating ceramic shrines and decorative tiles, and teaching in a variety of mediums. " I love sharing my passion for art, and seeing sparks light up in student's eyes..."
    • Laney Mead
    • August 25, 2017

    Wow! that bead show looks amazing!!

    • Sarajo Wentling
    • August 25, 2017

    Looks like you had a grand time! I hope to make it back there some day. You picked up some great loot!

    • Helen Lermontov
    • August 25, 2017

    Wonderful composite! Love your work. Thank you for sharing my goddess! You inspired me with your framed designs! Luv ya!

    • Kelly
    • August 25, 2017

    I enjoyed reading this but my favorite was “I”. Those insect beads? Cabs? are awesome sauce! !!

    • Cheri Hess
    • August 25, 2017

    Thank you for all the inspiration contained in your photos. Did t get to come this year. Heaven knows I have enough to keep me busy til next.

  1. Reply

    Oh how much fun! This is one of the best posts ever and makes me wish that Bead Fest were in my radar. It looks like a great time was had, and you all had so many blessings from it, particularly in the form of camaraderie and friendship, old and new! Weeki Wachi! I have been there! SO glad to know it is still thriving!
    Enjoy the day! Erin

    • August 25, 2017

    Oh how much fun! This is one of the best posts ever and makes me wish that Bead Fest were in my radar. It looks like a great time was had, and you all had so many blessings from it, particularly in the form of camaraderie and friendship, old and new! Weeki Wachi! I have been there! SO glad to know it is still thriving!
    Enjoy the day! Erin

  2. Reply

    So much delight. Thank you for sharing!

  3. Reply

    Thank you for this post Jenny. I missed my bead friends terribly this year. I thoroughly enjoyed experiencing it vicariously through your words and photos. Hoping to be there next year.

    • Julie Komenda
    • August 25, 2017

    Thanks so much for the shout out! So happy to have met you!

    • Terri Signore
    • August 26, 2017

    Loved reading the ABC’s of bead fest!! Still laughing about flat Diana!!!

    • Nancy Noyes-Ward
    • August 26, 2017

    This is grand! I have never made this show but this post makes me think I should not miss it. Thanks for sharing!

    • Debora bartlett
    • August 26, 2017

    A great show… and your recap of it…. awesome!

    • Carli Fournier
    • August 26, 2017

    Loved this!! It looks like fun was had by all – including “flat Diana”. 😊

    • Kathleen Lange Klik
    • August 28, 2017

    What a fantastic post! I love the gemstones that you came home with as well as the awesome artisan beads. It really was a wonderful weekend and you captured it beautifully from A-Z! I am thrilled that you used some of my photos (I did grant you permission as requested in my FB post, so you didn’t actually steal them)! 😉 I am grateful that I can incorporate my photography skills into my passion for beads and jewelry. Seeing that others appreciate those skills makes my heart happy.

  4. Reply

    EEEK!!! You have lured me into putting Beadfest on my calendar for next year. Looks like such a fun time, I just have to go. Maybe we can get quite a few AE members to go;-)

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