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Beading Q And A: Lampwork Beads (8/10/2011)

2011 August 10

Susan asks…

Lampwork Spacers by Hannah Rosner

Lampwork Spacers by Hannah Rosner


I would like to find some real nice lampwork beads at a reasonable price?

Lampwork beads are handmade beads and fancy.

BeadGal answers:

One of my  favorite Internet bead source is Rings & Things. Great selection, good service, and good prices on the beads I use. Plus, they have traveling wholesale shows which you can attend with an invitation (just call & ask for one). Http://

Interweave Press sponsors *amazing* bead shows in Portland, Phoenix, Philadelphia, and Miami. The shows usually have close to a hundred vendors, so the variety is incredible, and you can compare prices more easily.

Happy beading!

Sharon asks…

Why are lampwork beads so expensive?

Aren’t they just glass??? I found a pretty bead, maybe 1/2 inch long, but they wanted $8 for it!! And the rest were similar in price.

BeadGal answers:

They are just glass. However, each is handmade and decorated, or at least hand-decorated. The process is pretty tough. It takes a lot of practice to get them right. Also, if you’re shopping at a specialty store that mainly sells beads, don’t forget they have to pay overhead and all that kind of stuff, too, even on that one lovely little bead.

If you are planning to get into beading, I would suggest checking out the Fire Mountain website at and seeing if they have any lampwork beads you like. Save up your money and your beading needs, because they give a pretty good quantity discount. If you order a total of 15-49 units, you get about 25% to 30% off the regular retail price for 1-14 units. If you order 50 units or more, your discount can get up to 50% on many of the normal items. All the prices are listed for each item. It’s pretty easy to figure out when you’re looking at it.

Lizzie asks…

Looking for lampwork bead & pendant samples?

I am looking for lampwork bead & pendant samples. I have recently opened up my own hemp jewelry business, and it is THRIVING! I am looking for someone to go through personally to order all my beads, and pendants from all the time. Will get recognition on my website. If interested, please let me know. If anyone knows where I can get free samples from, would be greatly appreciated!

BeadGal answers:

Free samples are hard to come by.
You can do a SIMPLE web search for “lampwork beads and pendants” and write to some of the links that come up, explaining your situation and requesting samples, but most businesses, large or small, usually want to be paid, even for samples, since you will be using them to create jewelry that you will sell.

It takes money to make money. If your business is “THRIVING,” as you claim, you have the money to invest in supplies. Do so.

Ruth asks…

Will people buy lampwork art beads online?

BeadGal answers:

I’ve sold beads that I made on eBay in the past and did pretty well. I haven’t made any beads in awhile though, and from what I can see is the place to go these days to sell handcrafted goods like that, (though many, many more people still visit eBay). My artist friends who are currently active display their stuff on eBay, Etsy, and anyplace else that they can get good exposure, to build up a clientele. is cheaper to list things though, and it’s a fixed-price venue with no bidding, like eBay’s “Buy it now” feature. My friends tell me that Etsy has a great, supportive staff and sellers community, too…


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