Monday, December 10, 2012

The Gift of Sharing

Christmas Delight Charm Bracelet

Many people ask me about my career shift, from physician to bead shop owner.  They wonder about why and also comment, "It must be so different".  It is different in many ways. But in some ways, the rewards are surprisingly similar.  It comes down to the gift of sharing of myself.  One of the things that compelled me towards a career in medicine was a desire to use myself to "help" others to heal.  That is how I thought of the medical field.  

Today, through the twists and turns my life has taken me, what I've learned, is that "healing" and "help" come in many forms.  During the most challenging time in my life, when I was recovering from a most debilitating illness, I discovered beads.   When I put together my first pair of earrings, I was filled with  a childlike delight of wonder and possibility. With it came a message and warm glow that infused my body.  The message was: I have created something beautiful.  The warmth was a healing energy that has followed me ever since.  It was my own healing...a path I choose daily.  

My own healing has been less straightforward than the kind they teach in medical school.  I have had to seek out and experiment with what allows that healing energy in, and what blocks it.  It turns out that you, my dear customers, are part of my medicine.  Passing on what I've learned so that YOU can create beauty, heals me.  During my free wire events I see your eyes full of that same wonder and delight as you create something new and beautiful.  I know I am passing on a skill that you can use over and over again to create something from your own being and manifest it as an object of beauty.  Many of you create gifts for others.  In some way, I am in that gift.  And not only me, but my own teachers, and everyone who has helped and supported me to allow the event to come to pass.  

We do charge for patterns and classes here at Poppyfield.  We wouldn't be here if we did not.  But I LOVE my occasional free wire classes, because it comes as a gift from my heart.  Of course the materials are not free...and they aren't free for me, just as my rent and heat, hooks, are not.  So when you are drawn to Poppyfield for any reason and patronize my shop, you keep it alive and nourish it.  That in turns allows me to be here for you... and then you come here and I am nourished.  And so it goes.  

Join me on December 15th for my last FREE WIRE EVENT of 2012...The Christmas Delight Charm Bracelet.  Click here for details about the kit.  

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Holiday Lights

Holiday Lights Earrings by Julia Hecht

Who doesn't love the holiday lights that decorate the neighborhood this time of year?  They inspire my new design for Saturday's FREE WIRE CLASS.  This class will focus on wrapped loops for top drilled drops.  The technique builds on the basic wrapped loop which we covered during the last class.  It is helpful if you already know how to do a wrapped loop.  But all levels are welcome, including brand new beginners.  There will be a kit for all the metal components seen here:  sprockets, chain, jump rings,  brass wire and French earring wires.  The kit is $12, AND you get a $5 gift certificate with your kit that you can use towards anything in the store.  You buy your beads separately so that you can design your own color way.  You can even put together your own metal kit by choosing items a la carte.  I've got lots of filigrees, chain, and other components in other metals.   So don't feel confined to what I've used here.  Class is from 10:00-noon.  First come first served.  If you want a kit please call to purchase in advance, so we can get it made up for you.  If you a buy a kit, you are guaranteed a spot.  Click here for list of tools you will need.  The last free class was a great success.  (There are still a couple of kits left that can be purchased).  We had a lot of fun and everyone left happy.  Don't miss out this week! 

Other holiday items are now in stock.  We have metal and glass charms in Santas, snowmen, wreaths, trees, and more.  These are silver-plated with hand enameling. Some, like the tree have Swarovski elements.  Use them for a charm bracelet, earrings, or wear as a single pendant.  Mix with our other holiday charms.  

Spike Revival

I have a great supply of baby spikes these days...and we are busy getting them out on display.  The old favorites like Magic Blueberry and Cranberry Agate AB are back. Plus there are some GORGEOUS new ones like teal vitrail, turquoise, bronze iris, and more!!  Larger spike beads are still in stock as well.  Come Czech us out!

New 15/0 Czech Charlotte Colors

We 've now got an Apollo finish and a purple iris in the tiniest beads.  We are also carrying real gold, copper, nickel, and some metallic "look alikes".  

For All Your Holiday Needs:  
Think Poppyfield for gifts to make or buy!

OH, and please do check my previous post for some important information I've wanted to share with you.  

Hope to see you soon!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Making the Most of Scarce Cash

An Insider's Perspective...

I have a friend who always leaves unreasonably large tips at restaurants.  Why?  Because once upon a time, she was a waitress herself.  She knows how hard that job is, and how much those tips mean.  She has an insider’s perspective.  This year, as the holidays approach, I am appealing to you, with my insider’s perspective as a shopkeeper.   Please consider pledging to spend all your holiday dollars here, in our state of New Mexico.

Before I had the Poppyfield Bead Company I never thought about these things. Sure, I had heard, “buy local”  but I figured other more community-conscious people could do that.  I wanted speed, convenience, and the bargain.  In truth, I didn’t really understand the issue. I didn’t realize that when I spend money in town, that money does not just go to the pocket of that particular store owner.  That money moves. It circulates and magnifies and does a lot of good for a lot of New Mexicans.  

Let me explain how it works.  The money that is spent at Poppyfield Bead Company does not stay at Poppyfield.  First, about half of it goes back to my suppliers to buy more merchandise so the store can stay stocked. Sometimes, more goes out, as we grow and expand our inventory.  What happens to the rest of it is what is so essential to our community.  Your money goes to pay wages to my employees, who are your neighbors.  They live here and will spend their earnings here, which will support other businesses in our community.  They also care about YOU. They know YOUR NAME and want to help YOU leave satisfied and  make beautiful things.  But that’s off the point, and not about the local economy.  It is another issue for another day. I digress.
My landlord lives down the street from the store.  I pay my rent to him, and he in turn, spends the money in Albuquerque for his family’s needs.  I also pay Mike the Printer, and Randy who washes my windows.  These men work hard to make a living, and your “bead money” supports them and their honest work.  Dave the electrician  does my lighting, and repairs.  When my lightbulbs blow, I go to Voss Lighting, another local business to replace them.  When I need computer cables, of course I go next door to Hallmark.  The hooks, bags, and other plastic retail needs come from ManICan on Comanche.  Adrian is my handyman and I will soon be giving him some of your “bead money” as we enhance our displays.  He has 2 children and so your bead money will go to meeting their needs.  My ads are in Albuquerque Arts and IQ, two local publications that also benefit from my business.  Even when I spend profits, for example, to buy my professional wardrobe, the saleswoman - a very nice lady who has been on her feet all day and is still smiling, will get a commission.  The store where I shop and the tailor who hems my pants, will also benefit.  So does the nice young woman who cuts my hair.  Do you see now?   When you shop locally you are supporting all these people in your own community. They in turn survive and hopefully thrive, and pass on that money (your money) to others HERE in New Mexico...and so on, and so on, and so on.  

Now suppose you shop on the internet for your holiday gifts instead of a local shop...
If the business is out of state (which it is), your precious and scarce cash is going far away, and NEVER EVER coming back. When that business needs their windows cleaned (if they even have any windows), they aren’t paying Randy, or anyone else in New Mexico. Nor are they supporting your neighbors the printer, handyman, tailor, electrician, landlord, retail clothing store owner, or hair stylist. When any of us buy on the internet, we are actually taking our money out of our New Mexico economy and giving it to people who will use it to support THEIR local economy.   Something we, in New Mexico, cannot afford to do.  
Is the internet evil? Should you feel guilty?  Should you never shop on the internet?  NO, I am not suggesting any of those things.  I am simply asking you to think about where you are spending your money.  You worked hard for it.  There isn’t much of it these days.  If you have a choice,  please choose to help our state, and your neighbors.  Buy local, even if it isn’t the easiest or cheapest alternative.  

If we are not for New Mexico, who will be for us??

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Kits and Colorways

Kits in 3 color-ways are now available for purchase for "A Little Romance" Chandelier Earrings Free Wire Class, this Saturday 11/17 at 10 AM - noon.  Click on the Free Wire Classes page in the header above to see more pics and get all the details about what's included in the kits and what tools you will need.  Call the store to buy your kit in advance.  I have room for 16 participants, and all are welcome on a first-come-first-served basis.  However, purchasing a kit in advance will guarantee you a space.  I will have kits available on the morning of the class.  And you may come as early as 9:30 AM.  (Please note: The store will not open for general shopping until noon.  We will focus on wrapped loops and incorporating chain into your designs.  With these skills and all the gorgeous beads out there... THE SKY'S THE LIMIT!  You will be able to give hand-made gifts galore this season. 

Hope to see you  Saturday!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Catching Up

Greetings Beady Friends.... It has been a while since my last post and even longer since my last email to my customers.  Thanks to those who were concerned about me. I have been fine but overly busy.  Wendy and I have been training June, our newest addition to the Poppyfield team.  Now that June is working independently I can get back to blogging and emailing to keep you all up to date about what's new at the shop.  

Margo's Rivoli Roundel

Right now we have a bunch of new learning opportunities.  Just up ahead is Margo's new Rivoli Roundels Necklace.  It is beautiful and unique and uses 3 rivolis that are just gorgeously embellished.  As I mentioned in the email, I had been blocked from sending the large customer emails - there are just so many of you now (YAY!!).  Although we did a little target email to Margo's past students, some of you may have been left out.  I apologize.  I am HAPPY to report that there are still available places in the class.  It is coming up soon... 3 Mondays:  Nov 12, 19, 26 6-9 PM $75.  It isn't too late... Call the shop or come by ASAP to register.  

Free Wire Classes 

A Little Romance

Just in time for you to make your holiday gifts.  Saturday, Nov 17th 10 AM - noon, I will be teaching A Little Romance - Chandelier Earrings.  This class is free, and I will have kits available for purchase.  Stay tuned for kit colors and prices.  
Saturday, December 1st 10 AM - noon another free wire class is planned.  So save the date!  I will be unveiling the design soon.  Stay tuned.  

Painted Roses

From Vintage to Modern -  COLORING METAL

Vintage brass does not mean dull and boring.  Vintaj Patina Pigments make it possible to permanently color oxidized brass.  No messy or toxic chemicals needed.  It is a simple as painting!  I have worked out a simple 3 step technique for creating these beautiful PAINTED ROSES.  We will have our first metal painting class on Saturday, December 1st  from  3-5 PM.  I will provide all materials and walk you through the process.  Everyone painted as a kid.  Bring that spirit back in this FUN class.  You will be able to complete a rose pendant in the class.  Class size will be limited to 6 students.  Don't miss out.  $40 including materials.  

Make your own gifts with our new findings (seen here)

Poppy Gallery

We are expanding our finished-work gallery for the gift giving season.  We now have silk scarves from local artist Bishop at Brave and Crazy Designs.  If you like extra sparkle, check out our crystal jewelry from Desert Gems, imported from Israel.  New felt bags from Nepal will be here soon.  We will continue to expand throughout the holiday season. Come and see how we blossom.  All finished work is returnable.  

Reaching Out

Now we are back on track with the emails.  I am working with a marketing company that offers mass emailing.  I am crafting the appearance and text of each email.  Please do let me know if you like them or want other info included.  The emails are my way to reach out to you, so help me to do it in a way that works for you.  

Customer Kudos - How Exciting

Jessica Dowell won a Gold Medal for Fire Mountain Gems seed bead jewelry contest in 2011.  Check out the back cover of the current issue of Beadwork to see her fabulous work of art.  

Bonnie Vigil has a design in the gallery section of Jill Wiseman's book on Beaded Ropes from Lark Books. We have this book in stock  - and it looks chock full of designs you'll want to try.  

Two of my own designs have been chosen for Bead and Button Magazine this summer. 

Let me know if you have work published and I'll post it here and brag for you.   

Hope To See You Soon

Peace and Beads 


Sunday, October 7, 2012


Sue's Luz del Alma Pendants
Since my last post, we've had a few milestones here at Poppyfield Bead Co.  Yesterday I completed my first ever 9 hour class, the Luz del Alma or Light of the Soul Necklace.  I know I spent more time creating the instructions, than I did beading the necklace.  It is 9 pages and 43 diagrams / photos.  I will be sending off the work to Bead and Button, and we'll see if they want to publish it.  I am very proud of the unique bezel and use of spikes to create a radiant frame for the 27 mm Swarovski rivoli.  Even if it never makes it into a magazine, I am thoroughly happy with it.  Again, I was amazed by the creative color combinations that my customers put together.  Sue Weix made 3 of the focal pendants between weeks 2 and 3.  Look how beautiful!  Instructions will be available for sale sometime next month.  Call, come by or email.  Another session is beginning this month on Oct 22nd. It will meet three consecutive Saturdays from 1-4 PM.

Wendy's Blooming Braid Rope with my Flower Power Medallion
Wendy taught her first bead classes this month.  First, an Introduction to Kumihimo, and then her mystifying pattern:  Blooming Braids - the beaded kumihimo rope with beaded flowers braided right into the rope.  Blooming braids was so popular that we are having another class on Saturday, November 3rd from 1-4 PM ($35).  If you are interested in this class, please get some beaded kumihimo skills, beforehand.    You can purchase a kumi book, or my Kumi Bangles Bracelet instructions for some beaded rope practice.  

Our new sales assistant, June Malone, has started working.  She  is busy meeting customers and learning the ropes of running the store.  Come on in and say hi to June.  She is a fabulous bead artist (who loves working with delicas).  You can look forward to some new classes with June, as soon as she settles in.  

New Poppy Products
Speaking of delicas - we have a big shipment of size 10 delicas arriving this week.  We've got other new products including silver plated kumihimo bails in a number of sizes, lentil beads, new books, and silk ribbons in beautiful bright colors.  I have a growing selection of Miyuki galvanized duracoat beads in size 11's and 15's.  They are just gorgeous.  Margo saw them on one of her teaching trips and recommended them. I also have Miyuki project kits for sale. They are very affordable and include instructions in English and all beads and supplies needed.  

Instructions for the Flower Power Medallion are available for $12 ($10 for PDF version).  Call, come by or email for this super duo and pearl creation.

Upcoming Events and Classes
Albuquerque Wire Twisters - Wirework meet-up -  Tues, 10/9 1-3 PM, Free and open to all
Sylvia Abeyta is organizing a new group for those interested in learning or improving their wirework, or just "twisting" in friendly company.   Brand new beginners welcome.  
Magic Carpet Bracelet - Tues 10/16 6-9 PM, $35
Luz del Alma Necklace - Saturdays: 10/22, 10/29, 11/5 1-4 PM, $75
Blooming Braids - Saturday 11/ 3, 1-4 PM, $35
 Do you have jewelry you no longer want?  Broken jewelry?  

Many of you know that I was a pediatrician for many years here in New Mexico.  I worked with the most vulnerable children and families and I saw tremendous need in our community.  Pegasus Legal Services, legal advocates for New Mexico's children is asking for jewelry donations for their fundraising.  This is a non-profit organization that does important work protecting the civil rights of New Mexico's vulnerable children.  

Remember - Monday night is late night - we are open til 8:00 PM

Hope to See You Soon.  Til then... Peace and Beads

Monday, September 10, 2012

Magic, Flowers, and More

Magic Carpet Bracelet by Julia Hecht
The Day of the Dead Free Wire class on Labor Day was a huge success.  Fourteen participants came in, claimed their kits, and got busy making wrapped loops.  We had a range from experienced twisters to first-time newbies.  It was a nice way to spend the holiday.  Great fun was had by all.  I've had some requests for more kits. Yes, I will make up kits by order.  I sold out of some really wonderful charms and milagros that day. The sugar skull and other charms are back in stock - including some new ones.

Some come on in, and get your favorite Day of the Dead Charms, before they're gone again.

I've been having a wonderful time with the new SuperDuo precision cut twin beads.  If you want to make something colorful that works up quick and feels really good, my Magic Carpet Bracelet class is for you (see pic above):  Tuesday, October 16th, 6-9 PM, $35. At first glance the beads seem odd, but once you get the hang of how to work with them there are so many possibilities. We are in process of getting all 70 colors tubed for you.  They are very affordable, starting at $1.80 for 10 grams.   

Tomorrow we have an Intro to Kumihimo class with Wendy at 6:00.  This is a great opportunity to learn the ancient Japanese braiding technique.  On Sept 25th, there is a fabulous beaded rope class that uses Kumihimo techniques.  Create a "Blooming Braid" with flowers that spiral around it.  I made the flower medallion using the SuperDuo beads. I will have the instructions for the Flower Medallion available on Sept 25th.  There is still time to sign up for both kumihimo classes.  

Blooming Braid by Wendy Speare
with Flower Medallion by Julia Hecht
I have been emailing my store customers almost every time I post
here.  But I am going to wean down on that and ask you all to either follow the blog as a "follower" or check from time to time.  I have over 1000 customers in my database, and it is becoming cumbersome to send mass emails.  Plus, not everyone likes having their inboxes stuffed.  So, if you want to find out about new classes, products, and offers, stay in touch with this blog.  Soon, will be a "real" website.  We are building it now and it is very exciting.  I am also now tweeting updates @PoppyfieldBeads, so follow us on twitter.  

Hope to see you soon.  'Til then I'll be blogging, tweeting, and beading.  

Remember Monday night is late night...We are open til 8:00 PM.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Follow Our Joy

We just got a few new orders in! When the UPS truck pulled up, Wendy said "It feels like Christmas!" We have new Miyuki seed bead colors in Delicas and round (rocailles) in 11 and 15's. The Super-Duo precision twin beads arrived in 70 colors. We are busy getting them priced and setting up a new display for these very cool beads. I must admit I was skeptical about these conjoined twins. Seemed like a gimmick to me. But after just one afternoon of playing, I've been won over. They fit together like a textured tapestry. I am working on a new project with them called the "Magic Carpet Bracelet". Stay tuned. I'll be posting to let you know as soon as they are available for purchase.

Speaking of posting... I've set up a new twitter account under the name PoppyfieldBeads. I encourage you all to set up a twitter account and then follow PoppyfieldBeads and get the latest news. I will be posting special offers on both the blog and twitter account that will not be in any emails. So please follow on the blog and twitter so you won't miss out. If you need help getting these set up, just ask us.
Labor Day Monday come join us for the FREE CLASS as we practice wrapped loops to assemble a Day of the Dead charm bracelet. Order your kit today before 4:30. We have 5 seats left. If you miss the kit option, but wish to come you can always show up and bring/buy wire and beads. Don't forget your tools. Class is at 12-1:30 and then the store will open at 2:00.

Stay and bead or twist, or just schmooze with friends at Studio Poppy. Open Beading on Labor Day starts at 2:00.

Remember Monday Night is late night. We are open til 8:00 PM. Hope to see you soon.

This beautiful beaded Poppy was designed and assembled by Jessica McDowell, one of my customers. She used the technique of French Beaded Flowers. Thank you, Jessica, for sharing this with us.
Beaded Poppy by Jessica McDowell

Monday, August 27, 2012

Don't Labor - Create!

Day of the Dead Charm Bracelet in Copper/Bronze

Greetings Beady Friends!  I am hosting a free wire basics class Monday, September 3rd (Labor Day) from 12 - 2,  so you can  make your own Day of the Dead Charm Bracelet. I will be teaching how to make wrapped loops and how to assemble your charms onto chain.  I have put together a beautiful assortment of colorful beads and casted charms in a kit for $25.  It includes the new Swarovski neon crystal pearls, skull and milagro charms, Czech pressed glass flowers and druks, bead caps, wire, jump rings, 9" of  chain and a beautiful Mexican style heart toggle clasp.  Everything you need, except the tools.  (Bring your own flush cutters, round nose, chain nose, and nylon jaws pliers - or purchase at Poppy).  There are two versions - Silver and Copper/Bronze, so you can choose which suits YOU! . This is the season of smiling skulls - so get a jump on it - and be ready.  Also makes a GREAT holiday gift.  Call or come by to order your kit.  

Poppy News

  • Today is Solange's last day, so come on in and say farewell to her.  
  • We are open til 8:00 tonight.  
  • Hex cut Delica beads are now available in size 11.  
  • Coming soon:  size 8 hex cut Delica's (I couldn't resist the impulse).  Size 10's will be next.  

Kumihimo Classes start in 2 weeks!  Sign up now to learn a new skill.  You will need this for the Luz del Alma necklace and the Blooming Braid flowered rope.

Hope to see you soon!  Til then....Peace and Beads.  

Thursday, August 23, 2012


Greetings Beady Friends!  Change is upon us - some chosen, some not.  As I've learned to appreciate and welcome the changing seasons, so I am "choosing" to embrace the changes that are foisted upon me.

Farewell Solange

Solange  - Always Spiritual
Our dear Solange is leaving us for new frontiers.  Solange, my friend for 7 years, has been with Poppyfield from the start, before we opened our doors.  Of the 4 ladies who helped me set up the store, Solange is the one who stayed.  From part-time employee with another job, to dedicated full-time staff, Solange has seen me through all my growing pains and my unexpected illness last winter.  We've shared a lot of laughs and a few tears.  Her mark on Poppyfield is everywhere.   Although, she will be sorely missed, we are happy for her as she begins her new adventures.  After a month of meditation and service at the Lama Foundation near Taos, Solange will travel in the US and then abroad.  We hope one day she will make her way back to New Mexico to visit us.  Solange will be at Poppyfield for her last day on Monday, August 27th, from 2-8 PM. If you'd like, stop in and say farewell.

Welcome June

Poppyfield welcomes June Malone to our staff!  June will join Wendy and me on October 1st.  June is a long-time beader, who has the distinction of being a "Bead Dreams Finalist".  She designs remarkable and striking, large pieces with Delica beads (as well as other bead creations).   She is also friendly and helpful - a Poppyfield must!  We know June will be a great addition to Poppyfield Bead Company, and we look forward to her arrival.

More Discounts at Poppyfield

As more and more knitters, quilters, doll makers, and embroiderers find their way to Poppyfield I've decided to offer a 10% discount to members of these other guilds.  Bring proof of active membership to any of these local guilds to receive a discount on beads, thread, and wire.  

Gift Giving is Now Easy at Poppyfield

We will now be accepting returns of finished jewelry, purses and other gift items.   Presentation of a receipt for gift return is not necessary, if you give YOUR name with your purchase! With our computerized database of purchases, we can locate a purchase with a customer's name. If you plan to purchase a gift, please make the purchase under your name to allow the recipient an opportunity to return it if she chooses.  (She tells us YOUR name, and we locate the invoice in our system).   For holiday shopping convenience, all gift items may be returned until 1/26/12. After that we will have a 30 day return window.  Supplies such as thread, beads, wire, etc CANNOT be returned or exchanged (sorry!).  If you want to give supplies or classes as gifts, a Poppyfield gift card is the way to go!

Poppyfield Classes

Blooming Braid - Put Flowers in Beaded Kumihimo

Blooming Braids Tuesday  9/25 6-9 PM:  Wendy took a couple of Kumihimo classes with me, and was off designing her own braids in no time.  She has created a beaded rope with colorful beaded flowers "Kumi'ed-in".  This pattern has never been seen before - Wendy figured it out.  If you want to learn the secret of putting flowers into a Kumihimo beaded braid, this class is for you.  This class will teach you how to braid with beads, as well as the flower pattern.   You must know how to do the 8-strand round braid and how to tie-off.  You can learn these skills in the Intro to Kumihimo class with Wendy on Tuesday 9/11 6-9 PM.  Each class is $35.

There is still space in Saturday's Triple D Earrings 1-4 PM.  Make a fabulous pair of earrings using Delicas, Daggers, and dripping with Dangles. This class is fun and great for beginners as well as seasoned beaders.  See the classes page for details. 

The Luz del Alma necklace class  is now open for registration.  Learn a new bezel technique for 27 mm rivolis, and learn to work with the new spike beads.  Embellish a Kumihimo rope with tiny seed beads and create beaded end caps.  Don't miss out.  See the classes page for details.

My Latest Procrastination

Julia's gaspeite cuff in the making

When I should be writing my instructions for the Luz del Alma necklace, I am working on a new embroidered cuff.  Wendy, my mom, and I made a field trip to Kameyab Imports and I got this beautiful gaspeite cabochon (among other delightful finds).  I've never done an embroidered cuff with a brass insert, so this is my first exploration.  I am using some matching teardrop beads I got a long time ago at Thomason (because I loved the color), tiny turquoise cabs from Kameyab, and tiny coral stick beads (also from Thomason).  Thomason is known for their stone beads and they are right around the corner from Poppyfield on Menaul.  Kameyab is on Alameda just east of 1-25.  Last week was my first trip and I know I'll be back.  They have a great selection of cabachons as well as stone beads.  It's like walking into a huge market.  For sure a cuff class is coming.  Stay tuned to see this bracelet progress and details about an embroidered cuff class.  

Remember - Monday night is late night!  We are open until 8 PM. 
Hope to see you soon!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Glad To Be Back

Luz del Alma by Julia L. Hecht
End Caps and Clasp

Greetings Beady Friends!  I've been away from the store a lot this summer spending time with my family.  It has been wonderful and full of precious, priceless moments.   But I've missed you and the beads.  Of course I schlepped my bead projects on travels and opened them repeatedly in my home.  But, since my last post, I have not had what it takes to transport myself into "deep beading".  Virginia Wolf, the 19th Century writer  needed "A room of one's own and lock on the door," to ply her craft.  I need good lighting, reading glasses, and a quiet place to sit still for hours.  And of course, lots of beads.

Yesterday, though, I had all that, and got down to it.  I finally finished Luz del Alma, my first exploration with tiny spike beads (see previous post).  They enhance a sparkling 27mm rivoli.  The effect is not at all spiky  or edgy. But,  rather radiant and celebratory.  Last night I finished the end caps and clasp.  They are built upon a delicate (easy!) kumihimo satin rope using a variety of bead stitches that create complexity and intricacy.  The finishing is so special, you might want to wear your hair in a bun for this one!  The class dates are set and it is open for registration:  3 Saturdays - September 22nd, 29th, and October 6th or 3 Mondays - October 22nd, 29th, and November 5th.  Additional kumihimo classes will be scheduled soon for those of you wanting a rope class.  Of course you can create your own rope for this piece.  But, why not add some new techniques to your repertoire?  Call with a credit card, or come by the store to register.

Poppy Classes

Margo's Enchanted Primrose and my Triple D Earring classes have been lots of fun!  If you missed Enchanted Primrose you can order the instructions (PDF or paper) from Poppyfield.  The Triple D earrings class on Saturday, Aug 25th still has some places left.  It is instant gratification and the instructions are easy to understand and written for brand new beaders.

Poppy Products

The results from the Delica poll are in, and visible in the upper right hand corner of the blog.  There isn't an overwhelming separation of preference.  I was surprised to find that size 10's are more desirable than size 8's, so that was helpful. I was happy to see that there is a desire for cut beads as I already have some size 11 hex cut Delicas.  As soon as we get them tubed I will have them available for purchase.  I have already ordered some more colors in 11's that I couldn't resist. (I saw a customer with them and was disappointed to discover that I wasn't carrying them.  Problem solved!!)  Size 10's will be my next addition as I believe they are not yet available locally.  So, if you are looking for more Delica beads, stay tuned.

I have also grown my selection of tiny tiny 15/0 Czech charlottes.  I have a mix of both plated precious metal and affordable "look a-likes" including nickel, brushed 24 kt gold, brushed and bright copper.  So, dispel the rumor that "no one in Albuquerque is carrying 15/0 Czech charlottes."  You CAN get them at Poppyfield, starting at $4.50 for a 5 gram tube.

Coming Soon Super Duo - The twin of Twin Beads

Several customers have asked about Twin Beads.  It looks like they are catching on!  Since they seem to be showing up in magazines and on-line tutorials looking absolutely beautiful and intriguing, I've decided to carry them.  Well, their twin anyway.  I did some research and discovered that 2 very similar 2 holed bead products are manufactured in a wide array of colors: Twin Beads and Super Duo.  Christina of Good Quill Hunting tested both. She reports that Twin Beads are more irregular in shape, sometimes do not have both holes patent, and require culling.  They are also cheaper.  However, the main frustration with Twin Beads is that sometimes by the time you find out the 2nd hole is not patent, the bead is already incorporated into your work. That sounds like an experience I'd pay to avoid.  So, I've decided to carry Super Duo - billed as uniform, precision made, and reliable.  I've got every color on order and my supplier is awaiting their arrival on this continent.  I'll keep you posted.

Remember, Monday night is late night - we are open til 8:00 PM.

Hope to see you soon!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Soul's Light Breaks Through

Luz del Alma Necklace
by Julia L. Hecht

photo by Henri Grau

This necklace is the culmination of months of work.  Several months ago, after spending time with Rachel Nelson-Smith's new book Bead Riffs, I decided to conquer my longtime fear of right angle weave (RAW).  After messing around with RAW, I had the idea to use it as a bezel for a 27 mm rivoli.  Simultaneously it would function as the base for spikes coming out of the rivoli - like rays emanating from a source of energy or light.  But, after many attempts,  I ended up with something that just said "wagon wheel".  Not what I was seeking.  I kept altering it, but I just couldn't hit it.  How to bring my vision forth?  When the new spike beads arrived I saw promise in them.  Somehow I felt, they would help me express what was brewing, but stuck, inside me.  After weeks of working with the spikes towards an earring design, I saw how to merge them into my RAW design.
The breakthrough hit.  I sat down at 4:00 PM, and finished it 9 hours later at 1:00 in the morning (minus  a 10 minute bathroom/dinner break).  I never had to back track -it just spilled forth, bead by bead.  In the end, I was tired and stiff, but satisfied.  I am very happy with my "Luz del Alma" Necklace, which translates from Spanish as Light of the Soul.  It is exactly what I had planned months ago, before I ever saw a spike bead.

I am looking forward to teaching this design.  Look for it later this Fall.

Poppy Gallery - Native American Beadwork Exhibit

I  am now showcasing the beautiful seed bead work of 3 of my Native American customers: Paulita Daw (Navajo), Elton Tosa (Jemez Pueblo), and Navada Swan (Northern Paiute).  We have earrings, bracelets, necklaces, barrettes,  rosette hair pins, and even an ID holder.  All the work is for sale and ranges in price from $10 - $95. Jewelry for men and women.  For those curious and inspired by this exhibit, I have several books on Native American Beadwork. They are informative about history as well instructive with projects and ideas.

New Poppy Products

More Delicas are now available.  I have revamped my Delica displays and added a lot more colors.  We  now have over 600 colors of size 11 Delicas available.  I have all the permanent galvanized colors and color numbers through the 1800's.  Come see!  Do you work with Delica's?  Please answer the poll at the top right of this blog.  Your responses will help guide my Delica choices as I continue to expand my Delica selection.

Kits are now available for the Triple D Earrings in 3 color ways.  
Moonlight Passion Color Way

Pink Earth Color Way

 Clicking here will take you to the classes page, where you can see prices.  These kits will be made to order and first come first served for your preferred color way. So, place your order now by calling the store.  At this time they are available only for those registered for the class, and will be provided at the class.  The benefit of a kit is that you receive what you need for the class, plus extra seed beads.  It is much less expensive than buying all the supplies in full strands and tubes.  Students will also receive a supply list with the option to provide their own beads.

More Swarovski Bicones in Double AB - I couldn't  resist Indian Red 2AB, Hyancith 2AB, Siam 2AB, Garnet 2AB, Jet 2AB, Garnet 2AB, Burgundy 2AB, Topaz 2AB, Aqua 2AB, and more.  They are doubly delicious.

If you haven't been in lately, come visit and see what's new.  We are still growing and adding new products all the time.  

Remember Monday Night is Late Night - we are open til 8:00 PM

Hope to see you soon!

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Czech Us Out

White and Copper Peacock Daggers
Matte Blue Peacock Daggers
Some wonderful Czech beads are here! Wendy and I have been busy getting them ready for you.  (Solange is on vacation and will be back July 5th). I've got a slew of new daggers including Peacock Daggers.  They look great at the end of fringe and tassels.  They are also artful enough to stand alone as a single embellishment.  Use them in the Triple D Earrings class (July 30th or Aug 25th) or create your own design.

******SPIKE BEADS******

A new bead shape is now on the scene:  SPIKE BEADS -  I have these edgy glass beads in 3 sizes and a number of colors and finishes.  Use some cute tiny spikes to embellish or make a large bead the focus of your design. If you like to try new things or "bead on the edge" come check out our spikes.  I predict these cool beads will be showing up in magazine projects soon.  I hope to spend today experimenting with spikes and size 15 beads.  Life is good!

Tinier Beads Have Arrived!  15/0 Czech Charlottes -  These are the ones that Laura McCabe made a necessity for peyote bezels. They also make beautiful, delicate 3-bead picot embellishments.   Available in Matte Silver, Antique Gold, Antique Gold Iris, and Bright Copper Plate.  Five gram tubes start at $4.50.

Size 12 Tulip beading needles from Japan now available.  Perfect for those tiny charlottes. 

Take your metal components to a new level with "patina" pigments.  You can apply them with sponges or paintbrushes.  Layer and blend them for an endless array of options.  Seal them with glaze.  Pigments and glaze by Ranger.   Find them in our Tools Department.  Mix media and surprise yourself!

Metamorphosis ID Bracelet
Brass Butterfly with "Patina" pigments by Ranger

We just wrapped up the first round of Margo's Enchanted Primrose Necklace class.  It was a jovial bunch.  One of the fun parts about hosting classes is hearing the laughter and happy chatter and seeing new friendships and connections made.  People often say that beading is their therapy. Some classes are just like that too.  Of course, I get to "color cruise" around the room and spy on everyone's color choices.  I never fail to be surprised by what combinations beaders will create and how beautiful they are. Nancy used 465A for her petals of the central flower.  It looked just great with 465C in the rest of the design.  Both are gold-lined and available in small 9 gram tubes.   Margo did one amazing color way in copper and teal (459H).  I can't wait to use those 2 together. 

 There is still room in several classes:  Enchanted Primrose (advanced seed bead) , Triple D Earrings (All levels brick stitch and fringe), Kumi Bangles (Kumihimo with Beads) , and Fun With Filigrees (cold connections wirework and riveting class).  Click on the "Classes and Shows" page on this site for details and pics.  Call with a credit card to hold your place, or visit us in person and Czech Out our new beads.

Hope to see you soon!

Please note that we will be CLOSED for 
Independence Day, July 4th.  
Have a safe and beady holiday.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Delicas, Daggers, and Dangles - OH MY!

Delicas-Daggers-Dangles "Triple D Earrings"
by Julia Hecht

Just as I am drawn to the Wizard of Oz, which I've seen so many times, I can't resist another twist of this classic and timeless earring design.  This stunning version uses Delicas, Swarovski crystal bicones, and long Czech daggers.  I'll be teaching it twice - on Monday, July 30th 6-9 PM and Saturday, August 25th, 1-4 PM. For seasoned beaders who like dangles, it is some fun, instant gratification. At the same time it is also suitable for new beaders, as the techniques are not complicated.  This is my Independence Day color way.  I've already done another one with double AB bicones that can't be beat.  Delicious.  Come by the store to check them out in person.  They'll be on display or on my ears.  I just love 'em. 

Welcome Wendy

Wendy is our newest addition to the Poppyfield Family.  Wendy has switched from silversmithing to seed beads and from computer programming to working in a bead store.  We are very happy to have her as our new sales assistant.  She's been busy learning beading and Kumihimo techniques and everything there is to know about our products.   Please don't hesitate to say hi and introduce yourself to Wendy.  

Poppy Classes

Several  classes are open for registration.  Kumi Bangles on July 9th, Fun with Filigrees - Cold connections, basic wire, and riveting on July 16th, Triple D Earrings (see above pic) on July 30th, Enchanted Primrose Necklace (advanced seed bead project with Margo Field) on August 4th, 11th and 18th, and Triple D Earrings again on August 25th.   Click on the "Classes and Shows" Page on this blog for more details.  You can register over the phone with a credit card, or come by the store.  Your payment holds your place.  

New Poppy Products

While I was away on vacation, Solange and Wendy were busy getting our  new products out on the floor for you.  We've got the Design and Go JR portable beading surface - which was requested specifically by some of our customers.  
Come see our expanding inventory of 3.4 mm drops and 4 x 7 mm long magatamas. I've got small affordable quantities of some of the most beautiful matte metallics,  and AB finishes.  These are great in micro macrame and kumihimo designs (not to mention seed bead projects). 
New Czech fire polish (3, 4 and 6 mm) are out - including matte iris finishes and lustres.  
New brass filigree

Coming Soon
New chain, Czech rondelles, tinier beads (not yet here, but soon), beginner micro macrame classes

Hope to see you soon!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Its A Small Beady World

The Cube Queen Visits

Virginia Jensen, The Cube Queen

Yesterday,  a browsing customer remarked that I don't carry 2 mm cube beads.  I happen to be very proud of my cube inventory and thought to myself indignantly,  "Who does she think she is...The Cube Queen"???   It turns out it was Virginia Jensen, the author of the new book on beading with cubes, Contemporary Cube Bead Designs.  I have dubbed her The Cube Queen and she happily autographed her books that I have in stock.  We chatted about cubes and other things.  She was visiting from Grand Junction, CO, where she lives.  We discovered that my son and her granddaughter are in school together and know each other.   Small beady world, isn't it?  

My mom had already tested Virginia's book on her last visit to New Mexico and gave it a thumbs up. She remarked that "the instructions are very clear and easy to follow".  She thoroughly enjoyed making her bracelet.  It worked up quickly and is beautiful.  It will be on display at Poppyfield soon.  Come get an autographed book and some cubes and work up your own.  

I hope Virginia will come teach at Poppyfield one day.  If she does, I may even start carrying 2mm cubes.


Some of my customers who are on the cutting edge of bead products asked me about Hybrid beads.  HUH???  Again, it's a small beady world.  In this age of global exchange, Japanese bead company TOHO and Czech bead makers have collaborated to bring us the best of both worlds:  mixed breed beads - commonly termed hybrids.   These seed beads have the best of Japanese seeds - high quality, uniform size and shape, and large holes, with the unique finishes of Czech fire polish beads. The are marbled, lustrous, and sometimes metallic,  and have finishes that are called Apollo, Picasso, and Vega.  I have 25 new hybrids out.  I am starting with size 11's and 3mm Magatamas.  These will look great in your seed beads designs.  Try the magatamas in Kumihimo braids.  Ask us where and we'll show you these new additions.  More colors, shapes and sizes will be forthcoming.  

A sample of the unique, new "hybrid" beads


Memorial Day 1:00- I will conduct an hour long free demo to illustrate the basics of metal stamping - (see the Moth and Moon on the previous post).  It is a great, fun, creative way to personalize your creations.  The store will open at 2:00 for shopping.  Poppyfield will be open our regular hours over the holiday weekend.    

Change of Plans

We have 2 upcoming Kumihimo classes open for registration through the Bead Society.
Intro to Kumihimo is on June 4th 6-9PM.  The class is $20 for members and $25 for non-members. 
I have had to change the date for the 2nd class, Kumi Bangles. It will be July 9th (Monday evening) from 6-9 PM.  Also $20/$25.  Call or come by Poppyfield to register.  Bead Society members may also register on the Society's web page.  

More Poppyfield Classes

Fun With Filagrees  with Julia Hecht, July 16th 6-9 PM - Design and Cold Connections, Basic wire and Riveting. All levels  $35
Enchanted Primrose with Margo Field - Intricate Seed Bead Necklace.  Intermediate to Advanced Level only. 3 Mondays:  June 18th, 25th, and July 2nd 6-9 PM or 3 Saturdays, August 4th, 11th, 18th, 1-4 PM, $75.

New Poppy Products

New TILA Bead Colors - yellows, pale greens, oranges, - Perfect for spring and summer
New Swarovski Bicones in Double AB's - Siam 2 AB, Jet 2AB, Amethyst 2AB, and more
Kumihimo Endcaps - Bullet Style now in Copper and Gold Plate sizes 4mm-8mm
Kumihimo Tubular Bails in Silver, Gold and Copper.  
New Swarovski Crystal Pearl Colors: Lavender, Brown, Rose Peach (toooo gorgeous)

Coming Soon
Beadsmith's Bead 'n Go Junior (The new small sized fold up bead mat and tray)
Tinier seed beads - More on these when they arrive