After all, you need beads to make beaded jewelry, right? Well, after buying beads here and there at local bead shops around town, I finally decided to hit the Big Show… The Tucson Gem & Mineral Show, that is. As the largest gem and mineral show in the world, you can find just about anything you can think of, ranging from quite reasonable to way out of my price range. As a first time visitor it is absolutely overwhelming. There are wholesale and retail shows literally all over town and I still have yet to see everything, nor do I think I ever will. After a couple years, you begin to build a list of vendors who you appreciate and trust their quality, but you can always scan for new and exciting possibilities as well. Here’s the problem… over the years I’ve gravitated toward anything that would catch my eye and would say to myself, “I can make something really cool with this”, or “That would make a perfect…”
My advice for attending the show… get organized… have a plan… make a list and try your best to stick to it. It is so easy to get caught up in the excitement of buying, that before you know it, you’ve over-spent and in most cases purchased beads, etc. that you will probably never use. Or if you’re like me, you covet them (at least my favorites). This brings me to my next to do list item… sell what I haven’t used. And let me tell you, it’s not going to be easy because it’s so hard to let things go, but I’ve got to do it. As a wise woman once said, “That’s money you could have in your bank account just sitting there wasting space.” So, my plan is to go through all my stash and figure out what items I can sell, then photograph them and post them on a FaceBook Group that allows artists to de-stash their inventory. Maybe I’ll post some on Etsy too. Bear with me, I’ll get back to you on how this process goes.