These days, we’re always told to follow our passion. And making stuff is (one of) my passions- which is why I started this blog, hoping to inspire people to make stuff too. (Horse riding & eating are another 2 :P) But yesterday, I read a very interesting article about how life should be about “Purpose” not “Passion”- Purpose being about helping other people vs Passion being about one’s own pleasure. Which led me to think that my blog is actually missing 1 very basic thing- a resource on where to actually get beads & other craft supplies!!! Although I try to use materials in my DIYs which are generic and easily available, every now and then you might need a specialist part.
To be honest, I dithered before deciding to write this post. After all, I do sell my own handmade creations and pricing/ finding the right suppliers is one of the competitive advantages. But, after some deliberation, I have decided to be nice and share 😛 Hope this list will be helpful to you and if I’ve missed any out, do let me know! 🙂
- Creative Beadcraft
- Has a bit of everything and is good for a starting jewellery maker. It’s super hidden inside a courtyard though so you may need to ring them to find them.
- The Bead Shop (21a Tower Street, Covent Garden, WC2H 9NS)
- This is the bead shop I think of as “posh”. It has a good range of supplies and is in fact the best I’ve found for a large variety of interesting glass work beads but don’t go there expecting bargains. They also have a basement where they display their large collection of semi-precious beads, and where you can also for quantity discounts (for all the beads). Even discounted, they’re pricey!!!
Note: there used to be Bead Aura off Carnaby – and used to have a very good range of metallised plastic beads- but that has now moved completely online.
- The Button Queen (19 Marylebone Lane W1U 2NF)
- Specialises in antique & modern buttons. Not a cheap place so probably where you’d go for standout pieces rather than your everyday craft supplies.
- VV Rouleaux (102 Marylebone Lane W1U 2QD)
- Best range of ribbons & trimmings that I’ve seen in London. If you’re a business, let them know and they do a trade discount.
- London Bead Co (339 Kentish Town Road NW5 2TJ)
- Never been as it’s rather far for me!
A lot of professional jewellers go there to pick up supplies and it’s a good area if you need sterling silver parts.
- Bellore (39 Greville St)
- Not been- yet!
- Zafar (63 Commercial St)
- Great range of semi-precious stones available here. And they do wholesale prices!!
- Generic craft store- they have a section selling beads but it’s not very extensive compared to the shops above. Not good for semi-precious supplies.