Monday, July 25, 2011

Make a Bead Display from a Shadow Box Frame

Since I'm heading off to the Gathering this week, I've been working on new displays for beads. I'll have a half-table at the Bead Bazaar on Saturday. In addition to a collection of treetop beads in all colors, I'll have copies of my electro-forming book, electroformed beads and vessels, bird vessels, and a few koi beads.

The new displays are made from shadow boxes with hinged magnetic covers. I removed the glass panes, cut slots to hold steel mandrels, then mounted the beads with tiny o-rings at either end so they don't slip off. It's pretty easy to open the cover to remove a rod of beads, then slip the o-ring off and select the appropriate bead. We'll see how this plays out in real life. Of course, vessels are a different matter altogether.

I'm trying to keep my display minimal, since I have to transport it all to Louisville and checked bag fees really eat into the profits. Of course, carrying the merchandise is mandatory, but displays, table cover, lights, packaging, and so forth (not to mention clothing) really add up to an extra bag very quickly. This display can be set up in my room the night before, then transported to the show hall intact and quickly placed on the table. Back home, it'll make a nice display for in my studio.

Now, I want to make a necklace to wear from some of these treetop beads, but I need it to be simple because I'll want to disassemble it to sell the beads! If only I'd made more...but there's nothing to do but take what I have.