This log with a bird nest is hanging on the building that houses T&T trading company in Grand Ledge Michigan. Last week the babies were getting big enough to be demanding, all you could see were tiny beaks sticking up, making little peeping sounds.
So, I was already charmed before I entered the building for my first ever visit to this famous bead shop. I have been actively resisting beads for as long as I have identified as a fiber artist. I spent years scratching the surface of weaving before I opened my yarn shop. Then, suddenly, I had to have deep knowledge of knitting, crochet and spinning. Spinning was another fiber art I had been carefully avoiding. Who has that kind of time? Well, nobody ever has time for anything new. We all find a way to carve out time for things we care about. And sometimes you have to put a bead on it.
It only took a second inside the door to see what the fuss surrounding this shop is all about. They have everything that has anything to do with beads or beading. Precious, exotic, dzi replicas, Japanese, glass, seed. Tools, findings, storage boxes, leather strips. The walls are covered in beads. But my favorite part was the map files. Drawer after drawer of semi precious beads. In about the third drawer I pulled, I found several strands of larimar, one of my favorite stones.
I might have felt a little overwhelmed. I bought some findings and tools to repair some broken necklaces. Now that I know what is there, it will be another option in the back of my mind the next time I design something.