Christmas is just around the corner, and while I focus on the time I will spend together with my friends and family, I am also searching for some surprises which would make them happy. An elegant cardigan for my mum, so she can feel pretty when she goes to the theater… For many years during my childhood she was working incredibly hard to support us, without any help from my father. She spent long hours in the garden growing vegetable for sale, after working night shifts in the hospital. She took care about my beloved grandpa and grandma when they fell sick.
Several years ago she moved to the nearby town, fall in love and got married.
Together with her husband they enjoy going to the theater very much.
She deserves to feel good about herself finally.
My big sis has a beautiful home and family now. I am looking forward to play with the three year old Dominik, and plan to get him something creative and colorful what we can enjoy together. And I get to meet little Kristina for the first time ever! I hope she grows into a fearless, curious young adventurer. I would like to help her on the way, by being there when she needs me and also by getting her the toys which encourages her to explore, learn and become whatever she would like to be.
I already have something for my husband. Besides Christmas he also celebrates his birthday and name’s day, but thanks to his many interests it’s not so difficult to make him happy. My brother-in-law is a lot more complicated case, since he doesn’t seem to have any hobbies (or free time). Unfortunately that’s not new and I’m worried for him.
The easiest decisions I had to make were about the gifts for my bead-friends. I know their favourite colours, and we regularly share tips for interesting materials between each other. However, I realised that it may not be so easy for those who are not part of this busy, colourful (and for the outsiders overwhelming) world of beads.
So dear beaders, please don’t get offended, but this article is not for you!
This time it was written for the partner / sibling / child / friend etc. who is looking for a way to make you happy, to help her / him find the perfect gift for you. So if you happen to notice a sign of frustration in your household which could be connected to the complicated decision making process of choosing the best gift for you, then please share this article with the person is question.
How to make a beader happy?
1. With the holiday season approaching, you are probably looking for a thing you can wrap up nicely and place under the Christmas tree.
However, consider giving the gift of time first.
Go to the local bead shop together, and talk about beading and beads a bit, even if you normally don’t share the passion for the tiny pieces of glass. I’m sure she will really appreciate the time you spend together. And who knows, you may overhear a thing or two, and may find out what would make your loved one truly happy!
2. If there’s not enough time to do research, but you want to be a 100% sure about your choice, consider getting a gift certificate.
A bead shop nearby may offer gift certificates in different values, or you can also get one for an e-shop. One of the best virtual bead shops is Whimbeads for example. They have paper and electronic gift certificates available, too. The electronic ones offer great value: you can get an 50 USD certificate for only 45 USD, a 100 USD certificate for 85 or even a 200 USD gift certificate for only 160 dollars.
And what’s even better: the owner of the shop, Beki Haley is like a walking bead-encyclopedia. She’s probably the best person to ask if your beader will have a question or two while placing her order after Christmas / Hannukah / other holiday you celebrate.
3.It may seem that your beader already has enough beads at home, but believe me, that’s not true! There’s always something new, something fascinating available.
At the moment I have a serious love affair going on with L2Studio cabochons.
These art quality beauties made of clay come at a price of 20 EUR for one big or two smaller pieces, but until the 12th of December (when the shop goes into holiday season until next year) you can have a hefty 20% discount, if you apply the coupon code FLASH16 before checkout. Keep an eye out for the sets consisting of four cabs, especially if your beader happens to like turquoise!
4. Many beadwork designers offer ready made jewellery making kits. These usually contain everything except needle and thread to finish a whole project. Double check if the kit also comes with the necessary tutorial! It can happen, that you have to purchase the tutorial separately. In this case there should be a link in the product description of the beading kit, so you easily find the pattern, too.
You can find beadwork jewellery making kits in Betty Stephan‘s and Helena Tang-Lim‘s online stores for example, and I also have several beding kits available.
5. If you would like something truly special, keep an eye out for King Nichols’s pre-packaged beadwork kits. Her beadwork jewellery brand ‘Crimson Frog Designs’ is highly original, easily recogniseable and very popular among beaders. Kinga’s Hildegard bracelet kit or Winter Bead Embroidery kit would both be a perfect present for somebody who likes elegant, yet eye-catching jewellery. Her Sammy’s Fishie in Mango and Gold Marty kits on the other hand are suitable for beaders with an affection for playful, quirky figures and bold colours.
6. Since you have a beader in your household (or probably very near to you), I’m sure you already noticed that we like to share pictures with each other about our finished pieces of jewellery. It feels good to proudly show off our creations, but also to brainstorm together about jewellery design in our ‘secret societies’ on Facebook. However, a bad quality, blurry picture can ruin the impression, even if the beadwork itself is top notch.
It’s great to learn and improve ourselves in this field besides beading, too, and a fun book about photography, for example ‘A year with my camera. The ultimate photography workshop for complete beginners’ would be a great choice.
7. Maybe your beader is already familiar with the basics of photography. However, taking good pictures about jewellery requires not only a good eye, but some helpful tools, too. A tripod and good lightning are essential, and can make a huge difference in the quality of the images.
8. A well organised beader is a happy beader. And a well organised, happy beader’s family has a better chance to be happy, too. There’s nothing more frustrating then knowing you have the component / tool you need, but not having the slightest clue about its whereabouts – until it pops up again in a totally unexpected place. If you happen to be handy and have access to a laser cutter or 3D printer, you can try to make for example a unit consisting of small boxes and shelves (for example this, this, this, this and this) to make your beader’s life easier.
9. There are also numerous options for ready made storage solutions specifically designed for beaders. This table top work bench can hold all the pliers and scissors, spools of thread, nylon and any other smaller size tools.
10. Do you like to support good causes? Then check out the Czech bead shop, Rooya’s calendar. It contains 12 projects from local beadwork designers, for example from Tereza Drabkova of TD Beads, Nela Kábelová and Karolína Emingrová of Kaja Bijoux. The calendar comes in an A4 format, and it’s possible to hang it on the wall. It comes for less then 10 EUR, so it’s great value.
11. Did you happen to leave buying a gift for last minute? Don’t worry, there are numerous beadwork tutorials available online, which you can instantly download after payment. Print them and pack them into a a nice envelope to put them under the tree! You find top-not downloadable beadwork projects at the Etsy-hop of Eva Dobos, Miriam Shimon, and by the way I also happen to have some.
12. Surprise her with a magazine subscription! Some of the best mags are Beadwork Magazine, Bead and Button and Bead and Jewellery Magazine. This way the gift will delivered directly to your door in small packages over the next full year or two!
13. Looking for something more fancy? Search for a bead retreat in your area! Retreats are luxurious holidays combined with beading workshops with world famous beadwork designers. While beaders relax and get to know each other, they also learn new stitches and techniques. Be prepared to chip in quite a lurge sum for this, buit believe me, the experience is for sure worth it!
14. Make her a beaded jewel!
Yep, I know she might have more jewellery then the Queen of Englad, and probably has better beading skills then you. Still, consider her making something special. The Forget-me-not beadwork tutorial is available for free (no need to sign up or register). You need only basic tools and components to make it, and I am always happy to help if you have any questions.
I hope these ideas helped you to find the perfect gift for your loved one. They would definitely make me happy 😀
Let me know in a comment, if you found this useful, or chip in with a new idea, if you are a beader yourself – maybe your family will end up on this page today to read your wish, too 🙂
I wish you all nice and peaceful holidays.
P.S.: A few of the links above are affiliate links. While they help me to pay for the costs of running this website, I would never advice to buy any of them unless I’m a 100% convinced about their value.