Who am I and what am I seeking from your bead expert community?
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Posted by: ZoeK Post Reply
11/03/2020, 02:34:09

Hi all,

I値l explain a bit what I知 trying to do:

Is this just a general quest? Probably. My grandmother Jessamine collected beads for at least several decades, as well as retraining to be a jeweller in her fifties. She lived in the UK like me, and was fascinated with all things natural, beautiful, and handmade. Her father was Bernard Leach, he was a big figure in the arts and crafts/ceramics world last century. Her beads inspired me as a child, eventually I chose to study jewellery design at university. Grannies beads have slowly been seeing the light of day again, many are still tucked away. As I take them home, I am trying to understand what they are. She never labelled them properly. She kept them in all sorts of draws in her studio, and knew where she had bought them and what they were, as much as possible. But she died six years ago with all that knowledge. It was her centenary of birth this year. She had books on ancient and ethnic jewellery, some of which I have inherited, older tones, I also have the newest edition of Lous Sherr Dublin痴 the world wide history of beads, to help me in my quest to understand her beads...

It痴 a difficult task, from scratch, to make sense of such a vast collection, I barely know where to begin. I have already used some beads in my work too. I知 not a bead expert like you guys here, just trying to do some detective work. I realise her collection could probably just be sent to an auction house and sold but that is not satisfactory to me. She shared her passion with me since I was a child and now it only seems right to try to make sense of her bead collection. I know she had friends and people who would bring things back for her from their travels, and sellers who were market based - for example Totnes Market in Devon was one place she went to and had contacts. But it must be a very different buying and selling world now to when she was collecting.

I知 adding some photos of my desk covered with some of her beads, as it is now, with her bead tray that she designed on.

I値l also post some photos of the jewellery I have made that includes her beads in the thread...

She also made silver beads, and had a specially create lathe, and I have been making beads using ceramics in the last couple of years...

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