Note from Our President

January 2020 - our first meeting, of the first month, of a new decade was absolutely fantastic. The Panel Discussion members - Marilyn Gardiner, Roxann Ozols, Gillian Clarke and Pearl Blay were awesome readily sharing their experiences and knowledge. Members had many questions of the panel and also shared their ideas.  As always, a roomful of amazing talented ladies. One thing talked about was collaborating and Roxann and Mary Ann displayed their award winning collaborative creations.  I’m sure all of our creative juices were revved up as we chase away the cold winter blues.

I’m looking forward to seeing everyone at our February Bead Stash Sale and mini techniques night.  Let’s hope Wiarton Willy gives us good news!

General Meeting Information

  • Held the third Monday of each Month, except when Monday is a holiday 
  • 7:00 - 9:00 pm
  • The Hampton Inn & Suites 725 Imperial Road North Guelph
  • Meetings consist of announcements, old and new business, show & tell of member’s work, the evenings’ program, and socializing. 
  • The program can include anything from: hands-on mini-workshops from invited artists, guest speakers, demonstrations, trunk shows, road trips or informal gatherings

Meeting Cancellations: If Mother Nature decides to make travel a challenge on meeting night, Sherry will post a message on the Grand River Bead society Facebook group page by 3:00 pm should a meeting need to be cancelled. Each member/guest's safety is a priority.

Meeting Dates:
Tuesday, February 18 - Please Note - this is a change in date as Monday is designated as Family Day: 
 Sale of the Bead Stash and mini demos on various finishing techniques. Our bead stash sale will be $5 for a 6” x 6” closed bag of beads/findings.  For more information go to our Website. 
Monday, March 16: Techniques Night
Monday, April 20: Wire Weaving with Debbie Benninger
Tuesday, May 19 - Knot Your Grandmother's Pearls by Alison Griffiths
Monday, June 15: AGM, Bead Sale and Social
Special Note: The dates and location of our 2020 Bead Show were announced at the January meeting. Please mark your calendar for October 17 -18, 2020 to be held at the Evergreen Centre - and please tell your friends.
We are looking for photos of jewellery by our members for the Bead Show 2020 show cards. The photos should be high resolution images suitable for printing and taken on a plain background. Submit to Marilyn Gardiner by the end of February. We are proud of our member's work - let's show the world what we can do. (Note: if your work is not used on the show card, you just might see it on our website.)

We are always looking for ways to make the annual GRBS show more affordable for out-of-town vendors. One of the biggest costs for a vendor is hotel expenses, so this year we are organizing a free billetting program where we will pair up vendors with GRBS members who would like to host them for the weekend. If you have a spare bed and are willing to offer it to a visiting vendor we - and they - would really appreciate your hospitality! Please let Gillian or Marilyn (or any steering committee member) know as soon as possible if you are interested. You can send an email to
January's Meeting

We had a very lively and informative discussion around a number of beading related topics. Thank you to our panelists who were so willing to share their areas of expertise. The topics included, How to Order Online - both Domestic and Foreign, How to sell, market and price your work and Effective Storage and Organization of resources.
Mary Ann Helmond was the moderator of the panel and added some of her experiences to the questions asked.

Many thanks to panelists Marilyn Gardiner, Roxann Blazetich-Ozols, Gillian Clarke and Pearl Blay.
Collaborative work between Roxann Blazetich-Ozols and Mary Ann Helmond.
Show and Share from January's Meeting
Meet Roxann Blazetich-Ozols

Marketing Mentor for the Grand River Bead Society 

As a vendor, Roxann has been bringing mostly beaded jewellery supplies such as threads, beads, findings and patterns to the meetings. The pieces shown in the picture are materials for her fibre crochet necklaces. They come as kits or by component pieces. These designs are for beginners who want to explore using beads and fibre in a different way. She also has kits for tubular bead crochet jewellery designs that are more for intermediate and advanced members who are willing to explore an alternative to kumihimo.

When Roxann has attended shows, she would bring a whole line of needlewoven beaded jewellery kits that have been prepared to sell; some of which include just the patterns. She also has her unique dual lucet kits which are used to make cords in any type of fibre, or to be used for making anything that you can knit or crochet.

Some of Roxann's Amazing Pieces
Evelyn Lee's  Beautiful Bead Embroidery

Evelyn’s pieces usually begin as doodles, 99% of which she throws out.  She decides what challenge she wants each piece to have incorporated within it, ie. the use of soutache, or the inclusion of a bead weaving technique, or perhaps a certain colour combination.  Evelyn tries to work as organically as she can using a mixture of bead sizes.  She may make changes as she goes along, and remove any part of the work that she is unhappy with.  Often, though Evelyn has done some pieces asymmetrically, she still ends up designing symmetrically on a lot of her work.  She doesn’t count the hours she spends doing some of the big pieces, but it often measures many months.  Evelyn says that she just enjoys the process. A true artisan!

Tips and Techniques
Due to the fact that much of our time and interest at our January meeting was spent on how to organize jewelry supplies, the next couple of "Tips and Techniques" will focus on organizational types and methods.

Just like designers create pieces with individual style, their organization needs to be individual, too.

While jewelry makers can get started with canning jars and zip-top baggies, a growing collection of beads and jewelry-making components needs to be organized into logical and practical groups. Otherwise, getting the supplies out can take more time than designing the piece! Jewelry designers can group their inventories by color, by size, by type or by any other method that makes sense to them, using organizational systems that mesh with the way they create.

Organizational Types

Do you like to lay everything out flat in front of you and keep your paperwork in stacks? Then you're probably a horizontal organizer.

Do you prefer to hang everything up so you can look around and see it and keep your paperwork in folders on shelves? You're likely a vertical organizer.

Are you constantly on the go? Then consider using mobile organizational tools. If you have a lot of seed beads, metal components or tools then you need to consider some specialty organizers.

If you organize a variety of materials, tools and supplies differently--you're a mixed systems organizer. Perhaps you prefer your seed beads to hang in hanks while your findings must be stored in bins. Whichever way you prefer, you can find or create an organizational system that works for you.

Find out more about "Horizontal Organizers" in next month's newsletter.

by Barbara van Look, Content Development Group
 Exclusively for Fire Mountain Gems and Beads

Copyright © 2019 Grand River Bead Society, All rights reserved.

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Grand River Bead Society · 53-365 BENNINGTON GATE · Waterloo, Ontario N2T 2L1 · Canada

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