When it got near 4 pm, I got into the neverending line which mercifully moved quickly. Then I was in the show floor!
Trying hard to manage my bubbling excitement (I'm here, I'm finally here, look at all the BEADS EVERYWHERE!!!) I followed my plan to start at the FIRST of the show's 12 rows, instead of the last like I've always done before. Distracted by the line of booths along the facing wall, I stopped at Christi Anderson's Elemental Adornments booth to admire her staggeringly detailed silver clay birdhouses (her impossibly blue-eyed son seemed to remember me from last year--maybe he loved my necklace too) and at Andrea Guarino-Slemmons' booth, where I always want to buy several of her signature beads, each one costing as much as my plane ticket. But a simple black feather bead on her table caught my eye.
Barbara Becker Simon of the glass-fish fame, remembered me as well, asked where my necklace had gone and when I told her it had sold, exclaimed ruefully "You didn't tell me it was for sale!" Maybe I should think up some graceful way of letting more people know upfront that my pieces are for sale.
Despite rarely using cabochons, I succumbed to the temptation of some magical-looking 'dewdrop' clear dichroic cabs from Karen Nan. I'd purchased a dreamy large piece several weeks prior at Beads on Parade, the shop where I teach, and used that as a justification for buying these. "I'll put them together in a bead embroidery piece" I told myself.
And at last, after loving chalcedony from afar, I bought my very own half-strand of irresistibly hot pink briolettes! Even though strands of chalcedony can be found on many a bead show table, historically, the price has always been too high for my cheapskate side, and I could never make a colour selection, but these bright fuschia ones hit a high note in my designer's brain somewhere--I just knew this was the right thing to buy.
More to come later!