Friday, August 14, 2009
Bead aventures in Thailand (5) - what does a girl do with 95 chokers?
Another of Bangkok’s attraction for the beaders is the number and range of its wholesale outlets for beads and cabochons, for silver and gold chains and findings and for a range of packaging and display. I saw the most wonderful array of earring stands you can imagine. Unfortunately, most of them are plastic of one form or another and I am trying to move towards more earth-friendly choices this year around my beading activities. (Many also sell made-up items such as earrings, brooches and necklaces.) I visited just a few jewellery supply shops, but looked at a lot more and I think that the ones that I visited were pretty representative of what Bangkok has to offer. Amongst all that I saw I was drawn again to beads from Tibet. I came away with yet more Tibetan shell beads inlaid with old turquoise and coral chips and in different shapes and sizes. The ones pictured here are nearly 3 inches long. Was I drawn to these large beads because of my encounter with the enormous ivory beads? I am not sure what attracts me to the Tibetan shell beads, but if you like them as well and are planning to visit Bangkok check your currency against the Thai Baht and bring a spare suitcase! Also bring extra Baht and an extra suitcase if you like chokers. Somehow, I managed to buy 40 different coloured silk chokers, 25 black leather chokers and 30 lovely black rubber chokers for the 4 peyote beaded pendants I have made to date on holiday. I blame the need to buy in bulk to get a good discount but not sure how well that works as an argument to justify 95 chokers for 4 pendants! Watch out for a burst of pendant making in the coming months. And, .... I’m still hoping to catch another look at those ivory beads before heading home later today.