Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Baltimore Best Bead Show Recap...

I headed out on Thursday evening, making my way to Baltimore from Bolivar. I took a rather scary route through the mountains, the snaking black asphalt slick and shiny with rain. Besides driving longer than I anticipated and with white knuckles most of the way, the trip was without incident.

I arrived just in time for a few hours of sleep before set-up at the Best Bead Show at the Marriot at Hunt Valley. I was surrounded by friendly faces and relished in my luck at having such delightful neighbors.

Across the way was Beth and Tom of Kabela Design with their filigree, Gilder's Paste, and new epoxy clay. To my right was Chloe Dunsmore of Grama Tortoise, who creates beautifully detailed lampwork glass animals and goddesses. She also makes stunning metalwork focals. To my right was Anne and her niece Rosie of Craft Fantastic, selling glass cabs, paper and "the secret sauce" for creating mixed media pendants and rings. On my way to the restroom, I snapped this picture of Alice St. Germain of Succulent Glass, Joan Miller, and Lisa Peters Russ.

We had some wonderful guests attend the show as well! Kelly Russell, a talented artisan with polymer and metal clay stopped by. Fellow blogger and jewelry-maker, Courtney Breul (with her daughter) came by as well. We can't forget fellow Bead Peep, Kristen Ho of Beaded Treasures!

Also in attendance at the show was Carol Wingfield Myers. She's a hoot and a half! It was also good to see Priscilla Marban, a fellow exhibitor, who swung by to say hello! I caught Denise Billups Walker of Fire Dance Lampwork Glass hanging out in front of Rashan Omari Jone's booth.

I definitely think that this was a great show for shoppers. There were so many talented artists from all across the country and lots of room to look around in a nice venue. It wasn't crowded, so customers had their pick and choose of eager vendors to peruse.

One of the customers filled Cathy Collison of Glass Garden Beads in on a beach glass spot. We were warned that it wasn't a pretty beach (and to beware of washed up hypodermic needles), but the treasures to be found were plentiful. I tagged along with Jessica Prill, Cathy, and Anne and Rosie of Craft Fantastic for an early morning adventure.

Above is a shot of Jessica and Cathy. I was a little distracted as I lost my wallet, but was adamant about enjoying the morning without worrying too much. I had faith that if I retraced by steps carefully, I could locate it. AND I DID! The lovely folks at the Cockeysville McDonald's held on to it and returned it to me! I give them FIVE gold stars!

The beach was littered with all kinds of glass and pottery shards. The middle image is what I took home. I was very pleased with my yield. Some of the glass fragments have really great textures and unusual colors. One of the pieces that I was most thrilled about is what looks like the remnants of a burnt dump, a factory byproduct or something. Chunks of this fused glass could be found, with swirling patterns of green. Some of the perfectly round stones on the beach were actually bits of this glass tumbled smooth. I'm sorely tempted to go back and find as much as possible!

Besides the drama with the wallet and some traffic jams, it was a perfect morning before heading back home.

(I later found out that Jess and Cathy had a run in with a deer on the way home... quite literally, and are stuck in Cumberland while they figure out how to get home. Luckily no one was hurt – that is, besides the deer.)

1 comment:

Jenny Steinbeck said...

Will be interested to see what you do with your beach glass. I've been collecting some here from California beaches-- I'd like to try drilling it for pendants and such but I'm afraid I'll ruin it!

Glad you had a good trip!