September 19, 2011


Do you "meetup"? When I first encountered Magpie Gemstones, owner Szarka talked about meetups and I thought that was just her Canadian adaptation of some other word. Then I learned that meetups are a good thing.

Sometimes people bring new beads to a meetup and query how others think they might use them in designs. It's a great way to get ideas and gather enthusiasm for a project. For example, have you seen the fetish necklaces at Magpie Gemstones? I've gathered all manner of ideas for how to use the fetishes from the necklaces for new designs. One year a meetup buddy suggested I use them for key fob embellishments. I shudder to think how many of those I made and sold. Now I'm repeatedly taking them apart to make multistrand necklaces like the one shown below. Just think of all you can do with these. You can, of course, just leave the necklace alone and wear it! You'll get many comments about it! They are temporarily strung on string so one day they will probably come aprt but that's ok since then you get to make something new!

How about showing your meetup friends what you can do with beads from the multistones strand? These are rather inexpensive and can stand alone in a piece or be divied up into multiple designs. They are especially nice in earrings because the variety of stones makes the earrings quite versatile. I like to dangle several different stones from a jump ring and simply attach that to an earwire. Why not put several on a piece of chain and hang that from an earwire?

Unplanned learning also often occurs at a meetup. Perhaps one person brings a "show and tell" piece and people wonder how in the world it was created. This may lead to an impromptu explanation/demonstration of a particular weaving or other technique followed by attempts by others to recreate it. If you want, you can "meetup" with Magpie Gemstones right there at your computer and watch an online tutorial or read and view photos in one of our "how to" articles." Don't forget to send us a note if there's something you would like to see added to our collection of tutorials and information. We'd prefer to write about your interests rather than our own.

Meetups can be at a person's home, a craft store classroom, the corner coffee shop or most anywhere. You just need to set a date and time and invite folks. From two to 20, a meetup is a purposeful way to socialize and share ideas. Don't forget to take along some Magpie Gemstones to your next gathering! (and Szarka always brings her big cup of coffee!)

I'm still wondering if "meetup" is Canadian. What do you think?

. . . meeting up to support your bead needs, we are Magpie Gemstones.

September 12, 2011


Woo Whoo! We're having a BIG SALE. I don't know what we're celebrating, but who am I to question this great phenomenon? If you're a regular Magpie Gemstones customer, you already know that ordering $200 in merchandise warrants a 20% discount. This week, however, placing an order of $100 or more gives you a 20% discount. That, of course, means we can buy $100 worth of beads for only $80! (I secretely believe that the owners of Magpie have just been working too hard and didn't realize what a great deal they're giving us. SHHH - don't tell them!)

If you want to sale-abrate with us, you might consider some of the beautiful new coral beads that just went in the online store. The colors are super!

OR . . . If you aren't in to red right now, think about these blue lapis beauties. The chips will work nicely by themselves or mixed with other beads and who wouldn't want a lapis briolette?
It doesn't even have to be a sale-abration to reap the rewards of watching Szarka's new video on how to make wire clasps and jumprings.

It's free! Creating your own findings is another way to save money and Szarka makes it look easy. At the very least, you should watch the video just to see just how long her finger nails have gotten!

If you happen to be around Enid, Oklahoma next weekend, please go by a say hello to Kateri. She will have Magpie Gemstones at the Enid Gem and Mineral Society show September 16-18. This is at the Oakwood Mall.

Also, she will have the beads in place at the Hill Country Bead Society Retreat, September 23-24, in Wimberley, Texas. This retreat offers multiple classes as well as excellent bead shopping at the Magpie Trunk Show. Let us know if you want further information about this event.
This Sale-abration won't last long; so it would be a good idea to hustle over to the Magpie Gemstones website before it's too late to save all this money.
. . . Sale-abrating for you, we are Magpie Gemstones.

September 8, 2011


Writing beside my office window, I can't help noticing the strong wind pushing through the trees. The leaves are still hanging on, but it won't be long before the winds of Fall will push them off the branches. In a few weeks it will be time to get outside and notice the Fall colors that are abundantly displayed in the leaves. I think those colors provide great inspiration for creating beautiful jewelry for the upcoming season.

Magpie Gemstones just happens to have leaves available for us in clay. These are made by Clay Genie and if you don't know about her work, you can read about her at the following link: It's always a treat to use some of the art created by this woman. Don't leave these behind too long or they'll be gone!

Speaking of leaf colors, you can see some of them in one of the photos in this week's article. It is the second part of creating multistrand jewelry and focuses on using connectors and separators. I hope you'll take a chance to try some of these necklaces. They have certainly been doing well with my customers.

I'd like to suggest you "leaf" through the jasper section of Magpie Gemstones on line. Many of the colors in the jasper stones are reminders of the vibrant Fall spectrum coming our way. I think you could find some great stones that would work well alone or with the leaves from Clay Genie.

Although there are many other ways to talk about leaves, I wouldn't want to be corny and ask you to "turn over a new leaf" by trying a stone from Magpie Gemstones that you have never used before. It would also be pretty silly to stretch this and say you don't want to be left "leafless" without any beads at the great prices Magpie offers. So, I'll just leaf on out of here.

. . . "leaving" the best for you, we are Magpie Gemstones.