Five Reasons To Love Your Local Bead Shop

9:00 AM

Local bead shops are vital to the wide world of beading. They're an important part of any community because they help to stimulate the local economy while spreading creativity throughout the neighborhood. There are so many reasons to love your LBS. Here are just a handful:

1. Bead shop folk are friendly folk.
Get to know the people who work at your LBS. You have something very important in common with them: a love of beads. That's a strong foundation, and who knows where it can lead. When you get to know the people at your LBS, you'll make new friends and there might be other perks that go along with it, like getting advance notice of a big upcoming sale or the arrival of new products.

The super-friendly Heidi Gore, owner of Bead Cache in Fort Collins, Colorado.

2. Your local bead shop is full of inspiration.
Every single bead shop I've ever visited has had several displays of jewelry made by the people who work there. The jewelry might be for sale, or it could be advertising a class, or maybe it's just there because it's pretty. Whatever the reason, be sure to always take a good look at it. It could inspire you to learn a new technique or you might see the perfect use for the bead that has been sitting on your work table for months.


African beadwork and necklaces, displayed at eye level, stimulate beaders’ minds.

3. When it comes to beading, your local bead shop is as close to instant gratification as you can get.
How many times have you stayed up late trying to finish a project only to learn that you're missing one or two necessary components? Your LBS is the solution. Obviously you can't run out and get what you need in the middle of the night, but you can be at the door when it opens in the morning and that's much faster than waiting a few days for something to arrive in the mail. Plus, as you go through the shop to get what you need, you'll probably find other beads and things that you never knew you needed, but absolutely must add to your stash.

A large supply of each color of seed beads ensures you’ll always have enough for a project.

4. Shop pets.
One of the perks of owning a bead shop is being able to bring pets to work. My LBS almost always has at least two sweet Australian Shepherds in attendance and I love them. When I think about it, almost all of the bead shops that I've frequented on a regular basis have shop animals. If you're an animal lover, as so many of us are, it is always nice to pet a happy dog or a purring kitty while shopping for beads. Animals make us smile, and smiling makes us happy, and to be a happy beader is a wonderful thing!

Buck and Lily, cutest shop dogs ever.

5. Beads, beads, beads (of course)!
There is nothing quite like digging your fingers through a large bowl of mixed beads. It's soothing and fun, and you never know what treasures you'll find at the bottom of the bowl. Most bead shops have a bowl like this, but even if they don't, just think of the entire bead shop as the bowl. My LBS has a huge wall of gemstones that I always have to run my fingers across. They also have dozens of trays filled with small quantities of colorful beads. Many of these beads would never catch my eye in large numbers, but when I see them in small amounts, I almost always leave with a few. After all, beads are the reason I was there in the first place and one can never, EVER have too many beads!

Strands of gemstones arranged in color order are lovely to look at and difficult to resist.

Thank you to Heidi Gore and Bead Cache for letting me take pictures in my LBS.

Written by: Jamie Hogsett

Blog contributor Sara Oehler (the original SoftFlexGirl) is the Sales and Marketing Manager for Soft Flex Company. Find her on facebook or her blog. She'd love to hear from you! So, please feel free to leave comments or email her at

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