Contributor post by Alicia from AliciasFindings
1. Please introduce yourself! What is the name of your shop? What city and country do you live in?
Hi! I’m Shannon Schreiber of The Bead (aka BeadyEyedBird on Etsy). I live in Albuquerque, New Mexico, U.S. You can see my photo and learn more about me (and my mom, who runs the ‘biz’ side of things) here:
2. Tell us the story of your work – what inspires you?
I love fine quality natural gemstones, precious metals, and also exotic components, focal beads and pendants. I am also awed by the skilled work of fellow artisans who make distinctive and unique items.
3. What is your creative process?
I am usually most inspired by natural, untreated gemstones, and it leads me to gather a group of matching and/or complimentary stones together to create a design that is pleasing in terms of color, balance, texture, and even a sort of ‘personality’ for the piece.
I have boxes and tins of beads and pendants that I know I want to work with, and get around to each in its own good time. And it does take some time to ‘brew’ an idea. Sometimes I have to sketch it out, and others go more easily with a quick arrangement of beads and other components on a bead board.
4. Where do your materials come from?
Both mom and I share a fascination (well, maybe an obsession) with beads, and over the years, we’ve gone out of our way to find the most special beads and pendants wherever we are in the world. The collection seems to have a spirit of its own, with each bead associated with wonderful memories or impressions of Malaysia, Africa, India, Australia, and more.
Here’s just one example of what an incredible story a simple bead can have — as explained by mom on the blog features (and bead descriptions) she writes weekly:
5. Do you take custom orders?
Absolutely! I love hearing about a vision someone else may have for a very special piece, and working with them to bring it into reality. My most recent custom piece was for a woman who wanted a stunning and bold black necklace. Working together and looking at samples, we found some gorgeous large black lampwork beads with gold highlights. We ordered a large enough supply of these from the lampwork artisan to create a beautiful necklace and matching earrings — and I’m pleased to say she was absolutely delighted — which delighted me!
6. What do you want us to know about you that is unique and innovative?
My inspirations come from things I am exposed to in my daily life, nature, and my travels. I love to look at (and touch!) interesting patterns and textures, and think about how that can be translated into a beautiful piece of jewelry.
So each of my pieces tends to be unique — definitely not mainstream! As a woman, I make jewelry with amazing women in mind — to express their special qualities, personalities and values.
Also, I pay attention to quality. I am a professional, knowledgeable, experienced craftswoman, and I pay attention to the finer details that make each piece distinctive.
I strive to use only natural, untreated gemstones and other materials from nature. It is important to me to have an ethical business and to care for our environment in the process.
Finally, I am passionate about customer service and client satisfaction. Check out our policies and also our reviews on Etsy to see that we have been highly successful in this arena.
7. What are your social media sites?
Web Site: www.thebead.net