Monday, June 9, 2008

The Bead and Button Show

I just returned home from the Bead and Button Show in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. What a mind boggling adventure that was! With over 1200 vendors in the show, the challenge became to visit vendors and buy what was on my list. I honestly made a list. The artists who were there were well known. Not only were there lampwork bead artists, but there were also artists who made jewelry, used polymer clay to make beads, artists who blew glass, artists who worked with fiber, and PMC (Precious Metal Clay). These artust were the best of the best. Whenever you turned there were vendors to help you find the supplies you needed. Everyone was at their best. I learned so much about glass in the time we spent at the Bead and Button Show. Even though we were at the Midwest Airlines Center for a day and a half, I know that I missed many opportunities to learn more about all the crafts and to make more wonderful friends in the world of art. As I wandered down the rows and rows of vendors, I was truly overwhelmed. The basic supplies that I needed were available, and there were many wonderful and unexpected finds, too. For a long time, I have been trying to incorporate fiber into my glass work. A stop at one booth helped me with the information and tutorial I needed. As I wandered through the maze of artists and asked questions of these wonderful people, through their kindness an willingness to share their knowledge with me, I was given the information I needed to improve my skills. Tomorrow when I turn on the torch, I will be able to apply the lessons I learned at the Bead and Button Show to my bead making. The weather was terrible. There were tornado warnings. At one point in the show an announcement was made that no one would be allowed out of the building because of a tornado warning, so everyone had to just stay and shop. The attendees at the time were delighted with that announcement. We made on final stop there on Sunday morning. We set a departure time for ourselves and only overstayed that time by 15 minutes. We were proud of that because it was hard to leave this mecca of great art and supplies. Next year, I hope to be able to be at the show for one extra day. Even though the trip was tiring, the journey was well worth the price we paid.


Anonymous said...

Rosebud: Glad to hear you enjoyed your Show experience. That weather was something else.

Just want to clarify that the Show has 370 vendors, not 1200.

Also, it sounds like you're eager to expand your skills. Just in case you don't already know, the Show offers more than 500 classes in a variety of media and for all skill levels.

Hopefully we'll see you next year (and hopefully those tornados will stay away)!

All the best,
Bead&Button Show

CreditRiverArtGlass said...

My feet sure FELT like there were 1200 vendors!! :o) 370 is plenty... & it was fun!! Next year, classes, Mallory!!