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Bead of the Week

red agateJust perfect for your Halloween creations -- these Red Agate Evil Eye beads are of stone that was formed from layers of silica from volcanic cavities. Agate is named after the Achates River (now known as the Dirillo River) on the island of Sicily, Italy, whose upper waters were an ancient source of this gemstone. Each strand offered here has 16 round faceted beads, with colors ranging from red to amber, as shown. Each bead is approx. 10 mm. with an approx. 2 mm. hole. Each strand is $10, but for a limited time, take 10% off with the code HALLOWEEN at checkout.


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organizingJapanese organizational consultant Marie Kondo has taken the idea of ‘tidying up’ to a whole new level in her book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing.

As we bead collectors (and hoarders, and sellers) know, it’s every bit as important to keep your work, storage and office spaces organized as to attend to this in your home. Just as with house/garage decluttering, Marie shows us that if you properly declutter your work areas, you’ll never have to do it again. The basic concept is to pick up, hold, and contemplate each ‘thing’ you are attached to. Then if it does not bring you happiness, let it go. There was a great little joke on Facebook that said:

 I tried that Japanese decluttering trend where you hold each thing you own and throw it out if it doesn’t give you joy. So far I’ve thrown out all the vegetables and the electric bill.

But seriously, Kondo’s quirky little manual will help you clear your mess and enjoy the unique magic of a tidy work space – and the calm, motivated mindset it can inspire.

According to Kondo, you can actually clear your mind simply by discarding all unnecessary papers. She advises us to keep our desk areas relatively clear, to arrange books and materials according to our own rules that are logical to us and easily remembered, and most interestingly, to consider adding a small ornamental plant. She says not to make your office solely practical, and that it’s important to add a playful touch precisely because it’s a work space.

Here at The Bead, our office is a spare ‘bedroom’, and there isn’t much room so we’re forced to keep it organized. All the beads are organized by type in those great snap-shut plastic organizers you can get at hobby shops, and either stacked in the closet or, for ‘higher-volume sellers’, inside rolling suitcases. We keep our files on the computer so paperwork is kept to a minimum. Larger, bulky display items for craft fairs are stored in a storage area off site, since we only need those occasionally, and they take up too much room in our limited space.

How are things looking in your work area/s? If you need a little push, May 10 is ‘Clean Up Your Room Day’, so you might want to target that date for any big cleanup/organizing projects that might be needed. The idea for this special date comes from the tradition of spring cleaning, which dates back to the time when people relied on fire to light and heat their homes through the winter. After months of being shut up with no fresh air, everything in the house would be covered in soot and ash. Spring cleaning traditionally took place on the first warm day of the season. The entire family would roll up their sleeves and move all the furniture and linens outdoors. They would then clean the house from top to bottom, scrubbing down the walls, beating the dirt out of the carpets, and dusting everything in sight.

Have you recently done something like this, for your house or your office/work space? Or do you plan to do it? If so, tell
us about it! And how will you reward yourself for all that hard work! (A glass of wine & some chocolate? An afternoon off? A special lunch with friends?) Anyway, even if it’s just cleaning up your Cyberspace on your web site or Etsy (or whatever your selling venue may be), comment below about your plans (or achievements) – and send us some photos to share if you like!

If you enjoyed this post, you might also enjoy Time, Time, Time.

Happy Cleaning, and Until Next Time,


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