Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Resource Guide Vol. 1 - Jewelry/Beading

Recently, the question was asked, "Where do you get your stuff?" As far as beading and jewelry making goes, here is a list of places in the San Antonio area that may be helpful. Now we all go the big craft chain superstores, like Michael's, Hobby Lobby, JoAnn's, etc., but in order to give your creations and extra bit of umph, and edge, one does have to delve deeper and find that strand of beads that no one else is going to have. Here are a few places that may lend a hand in that:

Local Bead/Jewelry Suppliers:
  • Beads Plus - beads and findings
2109 San Pedro Avenue
San Antonio, TX 78212-3318
(210) 733-1772
  • Rainbow Jewelers Supply - findings, boxes, tags, hardware, supplies, lost wax, sterling/GF wire
2109 San Pedro Avenue
San Antonio, TX 78212-3300
(210) 735-3366

Both Beads Plus and Rainbow are located in the same building. Beads Plus is located on street side, while Rainbow is located on the floor below. Most supplies are pretty reasonable at Rainbow. They have got a wide variety of different gauge wires that sell by the foot and by the ounce.
  • Tres Rebecca's - Studio, beads, tools, notions, fabric, retail... overall interesting place.
711 S. St. Mary's
San Antonio, TX 78205

Tres Rebecca's is one of those places that you go to in order to get some inspiration. There is a little bit of everything in there. Plus, they are just a few doors down from me!
555 W. Bitters Rd., Ste 108
San Antonio, TX 78216
210.490.ROCK (7625)

418 Villita St, Bldg 700
San Antonio, TX 78205
210.226.ROCK (7625)

Originals has got two San Antonio locations. One in historic La Villita in downtown, and the other in Artisans Alley in the north side of San Antonio.

1826 Nacogdoches Road
San Antonio, TX 78209-2216
(210) 656-2745

I was first introduced to Ann Pearce Jewelry at a bead show. The selection of her beads were quite unique.
17711 IH 10 West
Bldg 700 Suite 104
San Antonio, Texas 78257

While at Bitter Creek you will find an impressive selection of beads and findings, they are pretty pricey. Bitter creek is located in the Rim Shopping Center near La Cantera.
Ste 111, 2838 N Loop 1604
San Antonio, TX 78232-1713
(210) 651-3050

Area/Online Suppliers:
You are most likely to see Doug and Pam Larson at traveling bead shows in the surrounding areas. They have got a wide and impressive selection of glass, Czech, and crystals. They are located in NW Austin, and you can browse their collection online, or in person by appointment only. I first became acquainted with the Larson's while in college, when I would sneak off to their home between class to spend my work study money on some of their fabulous beads. Very helpful when I was new to the beading game.
The one in SA has just closed, but the one in Austin is still kicking. I worked at the Ausitn location all throughout my later years in college, and it remains very dear to my heart. While pricey at times, they do carry a great selection of semi-precious stones and lots of sterling silver findings.
Located in the NE side of San Antonio, you can call to set up an appointment to check out their stock. Sherry Fotopolis offers classes and the best quality of supplies when it comes the craft of precious metal clay. I make a trip over to her place about every other week or so.
Chain Stores:
  • Beads 2 go
  • Hobby Lobby
  • JoAnn Fabrics
  • Michaels
  • Hancock Fabrics
Touring Gem and Jewelry Shows:

Now If you are serious about jewelry making, then these shows are where you really want to go. The prices are either near or at wholesale and the quantities are immense. Now, most of these shows (especially at the Live Oak Civic Center) are open to the pubic. The bigger ones will usually have restricted areas for wholesale only, which means that you will have to show a business card and tax ID certificate in order to enter. The Parker Trade show listed below is wholesale only and NOT open to the public. Here is a list of upcoming shows and their dates.
February 27-28
Live Oak Civic Center
March 19-21
San Antonio Event's Center
(near 410&Marbach Rd.)
March 19-21
Palmer Events Center
(downtown Austin)
March 20-21
Live Oak Civic Center
  • San Antonio Bead and Orniment Society Bead Bazaar -
May 1-2
Live Oak Civic Center

More installments of our resource guide are coming, but if you feel I left anything out of the Bead/Jewelry guide, let me know, and leave a comment! Happy Beading!



  1. Thanks so much Brandy! You've given me a few more stores to hunt down now. I didn't know several of the mentioned.

  2. Thanks I hadn't heard of Tres Rebeccas! sounds like a trip to Southtown is in order!! I can hit up Pulquerios too! They has a small selection of cool beads! I love Rainbow Jeweler Supply!! they are tops on my list!!!