History of MrBead & Green Beads

14th May 2017

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See us today at Devon Bead Fair – or next weekend Saturday 20th May at Berwick-Upon-Tweed Bead Show or Sunday 21st at Wetherby Beady Fair. Say your a MrBead Newsletter reader for a free gift!

We will be at over 30 shows this year, all with a bigger display. Click for details: all our 2017 beads fairs.

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Content:
New Beads
History of MrBead
Green Beads – Chrysoprase & Chrysocolla
Spring Bead Fairs
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History of MrBead

I got online in 1998 in Hong Kong, and then built my first internet shop a year latter on a 10-inch laptop in a tiny Mong Kok flat. OnlineOriental.com is still trading unusual Chinese collectables. All the stock was boxed in a covered outside balcony.

GuangzhouShortly after, I shared a 20th-floor flat above the largest bead wholesale complex in the world, in Guangzhou, Mainland China.

After 18-months we wondered if it was possible to sell the beads that were everywhere below us. Knowing nothing about them, we searched AltaVista online and listed them on eBay. Picture is view from the balcony.

It went so well, within a few years an eBay representative took me out for an expensive meal and drinks in Hong Kong.

Those days I traded as BetterBead.com, until Keith in the UK came up with the name ‘MrBead’ during a late night phone conversation. I registered the domain immediately.

Bead Store RoomThis was around 15-years ago when I build MrBead.com, followed by MrBead.co.uk a few years latter. Both stores are based on Miva framework, which although very good, is starting to date. Picture shows an early MrBead store room.

Nowadays most customers visit the site on a telephone or mobile device. Hence, the new mobile-friendly MrBead newsletter. This will be followed by a mobile MrBead shop, perhaps in about another year.

Bead Fair 2010Prior to 2008, I’d never seen a customer – they only existed online! Until exhibiting with a single table at my first bead fair at Sandown Park Big Bead Show. Never being to a bead fair before, I thought it would be like the jewellery shows in Hong Kong, where customers’ placed orders, rather than actually took stock away.

First Bead FairSo, I brought a big monitor and computer to market MrBead.com. To my astonishment, the few beads I displayed as samples were snapped up faster than I’d ever imagined. I was also surprised to see many of the stalls selling our beads that they had brought online.

 

Norwich Spring 2017Living in Hong Kong, we only attended up to a dozen bead fairs a year – but now we’ve moved back to the UK, this year we’ve booked 31 shows. As there’re not enough for our apatite, I organize our own bead shows to fill the calendar. If anyone would like to join any of these for free, please email me.

Green Beads – Chrysoprase & Chrysocolla

Large Chrysoprase Trapezoid BeadGreen beads are the in colour for 2017.

The name chrysoprase (rhymes with bliss and craze) is from a Greek word meaning Golden Leek. It is the rarest of the chalcedony group of gem quartzes and its bright even colour and texture is ideal for beads.

Chrysoprase was popular in the time of the Greeks and Romans when it was cut into cameos – the Egyptians used it with lapis jewellery and even to decorate beads.

Large Shiny Deep-Green Diamond Chrysocolla BeadsIn Europe until the middle of the last century it was used lavishly, when deposits mined in Silesia exhausted and it became expensive. The Book of Revelations (21:20) describes the holy city of Jerusalem with its 12 walls decorated with precious gemstones, the tenth being chrysoprase.

Lustrous Azurite Chrysocolla Rondelle BeadsAccording to an 11th Century Byzantine manuscript, chrysoprase strengthens vision and relieves internal pain. Metaphysically, it brings a sense of grace, helping meditative, calmness and acceptance of oneself and others.

It’s believed to encourage positive outcome, helping to heal a broken heart, the heart itself, the reproductive organs, and fertility. And in the East, Chrysoprase is said to balance yin-yang and encourage the heart chakra bringing energy to the physical body. Astrologically, chrysoprase is associated with the zodiac signs of Gemini and Cancer.

Chrysocolla is very similar to chrysoprase, but usually has more blue colouring. Both stones look great beside turquoise in a necklace or bracelet – giving a bright natural appearance.

To see all our Chrysoprase & Chrysocolla click MrBead.com or MrBead.co.uk

Spring Bead Fairs

  • Sun 14th May, Devon Bead Fair, Exeter Castle, Castle Street, Exeter, EC4 3PU – Details here
  • Sat 20th May, Berwick-Upon-Tweed MrBead Bead Show, Ancroft Village Hall, Ancroft, Northumberland TD15 2TL – Details here.
  • Sun 21st May, Wetherby BeadyFairs, Bramham Hall, Wetherby Racecourse, York Rd, Wetherby LS22 5EJ – Details here.
  • Sun 4th June, Cheshire Bead Fair, Nantwich Civic Hall, Market Street, Nantwick, CW5 5DG – Details Cheshire Bead Fair.
  • Sat & Sun 10th & 11th June, Wood Green Animal Sanctuary Gem ‘n’ Bead Fair, King’s Bush Farm, London Road, Godmanchester, Cambridgeshire, PE29 2NH – Details here.
  • Sun 18th June, Cornish Bead Show, Out of the Box, Cornish Craft House, Unit 4, Woods Browning Industrial Estate Respryn Road Bodmin, PL31 1DQ – Details Cornish Bead Fair.

We will be at over 30 shows this year. Rest of bead fairs and full 2017 Bead Fair List
Rest of bead fairs and full 2017 Bead Fair List

Exhibit at a MrBead Show
We have limited space available for crafters at some of our own bead shows:
At Berwick Upon Tweed on 20th May. Location details at http://www.mrbead.co.uk/berwickupontweedbeadfair.htm
In Cornwall on 18th June at http://mrbead.co.uk/cornishbeadfair.htm
In our Oxfordshire hall on 2nd July at
http://www.mrbead.co.uk/oxfordshirebeadfair.htm
Or our Essex Bead Show on Sunday 24th September at http://mrbead.co.uk/essexbeadfair.htm

We market for beaders making jewellery, rather than selling ready-made jewellery – so to attract your customers, you may need to market yourself. However, we’re just looking for a small contribution towards costs. If interested, email Nigel at nigel@MrBead.com

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For free shipping from our bead store enter FREEPOST See our ruby zoisite beads at MrBead.co.uk or MrBead.com

MrBead Newsletter:

12 Years of Newsletters 2005 to 2017. See all at Old MrBead Newsletters.

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