Bead&Button Show, here I come!

Now, you may have noticed a gap between my first two entries on this blog. “Why would Lesley create a blog and then abandon it so fast?” you may have wondered. Let’s just say May was a very fun and busy month, and I’ve been buried in beads for the last two weeks.

It’s almost show time (Bead&Button Show time, that is), and I’m teaching two classes this year, both based on projects from my book. I’m very excited to be part of the show as a faculty member this year (I’ve been staff at the show a few times too), but pulling together the kits has been a little difficult. It’s a challenge to pick colors for other people, even if you’ve heard their preferences ahead of time.

I’ve been lucky enough to get some advice from show veterans, but their advice is sometimes hard to apply. My friend Anna, who’s taught for years and sells instructions and kits independently, says that it’s a good idea to make a few extra. But she’s been at the show long enough that she’s a very popular teacher, and she’s had classes sell out. My classes were no where near selling out. So pulling together kits in a situation where I can’t buy bulk, want my students to have nice materials, and don’t want to go over the kit fee is going to be a challenge. I’m a little worried that I won’t be prepared for extra students who sign up at the last minute so I’ve made quite a few extra kits. The only question left is–what do I do with them if I have extras (and I will probably have extras)? I can’t afford to swallow the extra kit costs.

As far as colors, fellow beader and teacher Maggie advised me that there are two ways to do kit colors. You can either say you are a color expert and getting your colors is part of the class, or you can let the students pick the kits themselves when they arrive. She warned me that the more students you have in your class, the more likely someone will be unhappy and with the second choice there might be chaos. So I’ve assembled kits in colorways that I like (taking any student input I’ve received into account), but if I have leftover kits I might let students trade.

Show week is always crazy–lots of people to talk to and places to be. I’m excited to be taking on a new role this year, but I’m also glad I get to reinforce some of the relationships I’ve already built–talk to designers and authors I worked with, former coworkers, etc.

It should be a great week!

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