State of the Onion

Inside of the StoreNo new stuff this week – so we thought we’d do a little recap of last
year and give you a peek into the future as to what is coming up
in the new year!

About this time last year, we were madly packing – as we were moving
into new premises. We doubled our floor space, increased our back office/counting/packaging/shipping
area, and added a big classroom, a metal-smithing studio, and a redesigned,
state of the art lampworking studio.

Around the middle of the year – we installed a new point of sale
in the store for faster and more accurate checkout,
and which finally, finally, talks to our website, which
means that our incidence of items showing as being available online,
but actually being sold out has dropped right off. Less frustration for

We also saw some new ideas in jewelry making, like the
, Regaliz
the Mirrix looms,
and the Soutache.

We added over 3200 products this year – all individually
photographed and described.
We don’t believe in using stock photos
that show you “one bead,” or worse – show
all the sizes as the same bead, enlarged. We also believe in supporting
the small wholesalers, who aren’t in a position to provide photos, or have
one-of-a-kind items that you just won’t see anywhere else!

We show you actual pictures of the
beads – so you know that we really do have them. We measure them and
list the dimensions, show you the backs of items, and give you the same
amount of information that you would get if you came into the store and
handled the beads yourself. Sorry – until we all get robotic arms with
tactile feedback – we can’t simulate rolling the beads around in your hands!
(That would be pretty cool though!)

This coming year – we’re going to be giving the website a major
that will give you modern features that we have
all come to expect from websites – like better search function, more
consistent navigation,
choice of sort order, zoomable pictures, saveable shopping cart,
(and easier to use!), access to previous orders, view status
of orders, and a bunch of other friendly features that we don’t want
to say anything about until we test them!

We’ll be doing some online re-organizing – because it’s just time! We
could use a few on-line testers – if you want to drop
me a line
and volunteer. 😉

As for new beads – in the immediate future, well – more
Swarovski’s. That’s a given. I see Freshwater Pearls in the near future.
More metal, ooo and some vintage beads that we don’t want to reveal the
nature of yet. Spoil-ers! And that’s just January! Our buyer is already
planning her trip to Tucson in February to pick up fabulous goodies for
you, and plotting and planning to find the greatest and most inspiring
So – while 2012 was fabulous – we’re really excited about 2013. It’s going
to be Awesome! 

Holiday Hours

straight through until the new year
– re-opening
on January 2. This gives everyone here a chance to have some quality
time with their family, reacquaint themselves with the strangers
with whom they live, and generally just recharge their batteries.

However – we are carrying
on our tradition of giving you 12
inspirations over the 12 days of Christmas
This year – Stephanie has agreed to do the 12 days of Christmas jewelry
– with the theme of “Bling in the New Year.” We await her creations
with breathless anticipation!

So – from all of us – to all of you – we wish you a wonderful and happy
holiday season, and may all your wishes come true!

As always, wonderful, wonderful things
– all over the site. I leave you to explore at your leisure. Click
on a link or an image to go straight to the item mentioned above, or
go to our massive
list of everything
, or if that page seems overwhelming – which we freely
admit it is! – then try for bite-size portions by checking out these
categories: Firepolish, Pressed
, Swarovski
, Seedbeads, Stone
and Pearls
, Preciosa
, Metal
, Other
Cool Beads
, Findings, Metal
Clay & Supplies
or Books,
Kits, Tools

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