Beading the U.K. Way – Reviews

July 17, 2010

Whew! I’m back! Busy doing what I’m supposed to be doing: making stuff. 😀

Before rolling out the reviews–a little bragging:

RMBDesigns was featured on the front page of Artfire.com as a Featured Artisan. Not sure if the interview is still on the home page, but the interview is here. Yes, comments are welcome.

Now on with the show!

A few months ago I reviewed the “big three” beading magazines for the U.S.  This time, it’s the U.K.’s turn.  Here are my thoughts on three magazines from our friends across “the pond”.

Creative Beads & Jewellery:  The issue I picked up is issue #2 for this new magazine.

Like: The giveaways. I’ve never seen so many free gifts offered. The U.S. publishers don’t do anything on the same scale. Books, lamps, tools, beads, oh my!

Love: The photography makes the projects sing. They all look bright and bold. The instructions, even with the different measuring systems, are straightforward.

It’s only the second issue, but Creative Beads & Jewellery is one to pick up.

Next up: Bead magazine. The issue I picked up is #22, so this title has been around for a bit.

Like: Letters to the Editor. The editor is willing to print criticism as well as praise. A sign that this magazine will continue to grow and meet reader’s needs.

Like: Project instructions are clear and the illustrations make it easy to follow. Also, the issue theme is fun and focused. This particular issue was “color”. Several contributors discussed how they chose a palette, and what their favorite choices are.

Like: Plenty of material sources. If you need a vendor, they’re probably listed in Bead.  Very similar to our Bead & Button magazine.

Love: Again, photography rules. The projects look twice as nice because of the strong photographs. One truly wants to try them all.

Love: The “Beadmaker Profile” and “Beader’s Profile.”  It’s fascinating to discover what inspires other artists in other countries.  We forget that even though both the U.K. and U.S. are English speaking countries, we are different countries.  Again, the photography enhances the work. This makes it easy to admire the artist’s skill.

Bead has a sister video website: http://www.bead.tv

Next up: Beads & Beyond

Bead and CB&J are the “People” and “In Style” of UK beading magazines. Beads & Beyond is “Vogue”.

Love: Again, photography is luscious. The projects are set like a couture fashion shoot. Bridal jewelry (this issue’s main theme) is photographed in delicate lighting. Plenty of close ups showcase the details of both the instructions and finished pieces. Most of the backgrounds are simple white, or a very simple patterned back drop.

Love: The typeface is sophisticated. Even the “retail therapy” section is set up to entice, not just scream what’s new to buy.

Love: The projects are sophisticated (yes I keep using that word, there isn’t another to describe it properly), yet not only for advanced beaders. I tried out the “around in circles” brooch and loved it. My version is a little different (I messed up a few stitches):

My attempt at a U.K. magazine project

Beads & Beyond is definitely on my “buy again” list. All the magazines are lovely,  the different styles provide something for everyone.

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2 Responses to “Beading the U.K. Way – Reviews”

  1. ExquisiteStudios Says:

    OUTSTANDING! I read your feature on Artfire too and loved it 🙂


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