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June 25, 2015

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~POWER TO THE SHE~

The Summer Solstice Celebration at Athleta

It all started at Wanderlust, that cold and dreary day at the end of May, where Mother Nature scoffed at us for thinking it was actually turning into summer. We had our tent with Intention Beads and soon realized that we positioned next to the one and only Athleta. Our tent was almost funny in comparison to theirs. While we had a simple, small tent liable to blow away with the wind along with our hopes of sunshine, Athleta's tent was a huge, well-anchored area for them to set up not only several racks of clothes, but a hair braiding station - so cool!

We soon realized that we liked each others company and had several things in common with respect to our clientele. One of our fearless leaders then called up Athleta a few days later, and they invited us to join them for their summer solstice celebration at their Oak St location downtown! It was awesome. Our minds started working just as fast as our bead makers' hands trying to think of a set up worthy of Athleta. Soon, we had the idea to utilize our social media platforms to launch the event.

 

Everyone who would attend the Oak St store could post on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter for a chance to win a free Orbit Necklace! We used our creativity to set up a "Wall of Intentions" where the shoppers would post an intention or affirmation of theirs they wished to fulfill. The response we got was amazing! There was so much positivity flowing from those in the store and we were so pleased to be able to share that moment with them.

We hope to continue to work with Athleta in the future and bring strength, peace of mind, and positivity to our customers! Power to the She!

June 18, 2015

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Latest Festivals and Shows

Well, June has been a super busy month for us here at She Beads but we have loved it! Every now and then, we want to go outside of our studio in Wilmette and show our products at street festivals or art shows. Lately, we have been running around all over the Chicago land area bringing bracelets, earrings, etc. to brand new customers!

Back at the very end of May, Intention Beads had a tent at the very cold, very wet, very fun Wanderlust 108 festival! Watching the participants run a 5k, do a full yoga practice and follow that up with meditation all in the rain, we were inspired. We loved being a part of Wanderlust and hope to be back again soon!

       

This past weekend was a super busy one as She Beads had a tent at the Wells St Art Festival. Wells St was an awesome location and time to showcase our Blackhawks beads! With game 5 on Saturday night, fans needed last minute garnishments to their fan wear. Then on Sunday, fans were super excited to stock up for Monday's game 6 on home ice. The Blackhawks were able to clinch the series as well as bring Stanley back home!

Check out our latest blog post about how much we love our Hawks!

Sandy was present at the world famous Celebrate Your Life expo where she sold her popular Orbit Necklaces with Intention Beads during the same weekend as Wells St. It was a long four days for her, but the crowd was amazing and the speakers present were profound. Her show there was a successful one, and she was very excited to be invited to sell her products there.

"I'd Say You Have a Dynasty"

Congratulations Blackhawks!

She Beads has had a blast working with the Blackhawks and NHL to get local licensing in order to turn our customers into super fans. Our licensing started about a year ago, and the growth and support of the team we have seen as a result is amazing!

We soon realized that every time we had posted, Tweeted or emailed regarding the Blackhawks they won! It was at that point where we said, "Okay, it's time for another flash sale." Well we gave the people what they wanted, and offered a discount depending on how many goals the Blackhawks scored in game 7 against Anaheim. It was a very fast four goals and the orders came flooding in the next day. We worked effortlessly to complete the nearly 150 orders and had a lot of fun doing it, we even constructed our very own Stanley Cup out of the boxes to be shipped out that day.

  

Then...

We were finally in the Stanley Cup Finals! To have a little fun, we thought to showcase a 'She Beads Player of the Game'. We chose a player, dressed up as them in a beard, and thought of a great bio for them complete with 'Fun Facts'.

     

From left: Corey Crawford (Crow), Patrick Kane (Kaner), Teuvo Teravainen (Baby-Faced Assassin), Jonathan Toews (The Captain)

To stir up the competition among our customers, we introduced a social media contest. The person to show their Blackhawks pride and garner the most Likes, Favorites, or Retweets would be the proud owner of a $25 gift card! We received so many great submissions so it was an awesome way to show support for both She Beads and the Blackhawks!

Congrats again to the best team and best fans in hockey! We look forward to our continued relationship with the team and the NHL. Go Blackhawks!

 

May 21, 2015

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The New Apple Watch by She Beads

There is something beautiful and precious of doing things the simple way, and this is brought back to life with the new Apple Watch created by She Beads. While tech companies the world over have attempted to make hi-tech watches look stylish while simultaneously performing a function, there is something about them that just doesn't scream fashionable, until now.

She Beads has made the seemingly impossible, possible. With tons of 'useful features' included, this less expensive alternative to the aesthetically displeasing watches can do [basically] everything the same, if not better.

For instance, weather forecasting is now quick, easy, and doesn't require a Wifi password. Simply put the watch on, step outside, and you'll know what outfit will suit the current weather conditions. Additionally, there is no constant worrying about battery life, because this beauty has the life of three years, guaranteed. This means no charging, no cords, simply no strings attached.

The features don't stop with weather and battery life, however. Fitness is now infinitely improved as well! It's true that an apple a day keeps the doctor away, and what better way to remember this health-conscious mantra than to see the very fruit itself on your own wrist everyday. The Apple Watch is also your new workout buddy, just accessorize it with the latest fashion of patterned leggings and sweat deterring jacket for the cutest outfit in spin class.

Family disputes and sibling battles starting over data usage every month? Well no more! The money saved and stress relieved from this device is truly heaven sent. No data requirements mean less money out of your wallet, and a happier, healthier home life. You're welcome for that too.

While this is a humorous take on the latest technological advancement, this watch includes the same care and devotion as any other product handmade in the Wilmette studio. The double strand of small beads connect with a stainless steel watch face, and the ability to fit any size wrist is another She Beads plus that can't be beat.

Finally, if you're still looking for the perfect gift for the kids' teachers, look no further. What better way to apologize for little Johnny pulling Sally's hair than to appreciate the teachers that deal with your little angels for eight hours a day? The watch is perfect for any grade school teacher, principle or math tutor who wants to brag about an individual and unique Apple Watch.

 

FARE Spring Luncheon

Food Allergy Research and Education (FARE) is an organization that works to improve the quality of life for those afflicted with food allergies. Every year, the organization raises money through an awareness walk, and last year the walk raised about $3 million. They also push to provide life-saving allergy devices in schools to make relief easier and less expensive for students with allergies.

She Beads has been working with FARE for over six years, and we have even produced several custom clay designs for the organization. The designs show the top nine allergens that affect kids everyday. She Beads loves to help out with such a positive organization geared towards helping those with allergies, as well as their families.

At the luncheon, the Keynote speaker Carla Hall elaborated on her philosophy to always "cook with love" that is present in all her cooking, as well as her past participation in popular cooking shows like Top Chef. Carla strongly believes that food and cooking are reflections of a person's mood, "If you're not in a good mood, the only thing you should make is a reservation." Carla is currently a co-host on a daytime lifestyle show called The Chew. Her colleagues on the show are a range of people including famous restaurant owners, health and wellness experts, and an entertainment specialist. Her accomplishments do not stop there as she is a successful author of cooking books that focus on worldwide cuisine and comfort foods.

She Beads and Carla Hall have definite similarities. For instance, Carla is interested in having personality shine through in her cooking and philosophies she shares, and so is She Beads. We are a company dedicated to making the best product we can for our customers, and letting individuality shine through is just one of the benefits that come from handmade products. Our love of what we do defintiely shines through in the quality of our product, a thought that aligns perfectly with Carla's philosophy to "cook with love".

'That Bites' was a documentary featured at the luncheon, and was created by 13-year-old Jack Yonover of Wilmette. He talked of how at first, he underestimated the impact an allergy would have on his life, but also how he became stronger in spite of having a severe allergy. See this link for an article from the Chicago Tribune which expands on his fight to bring awareness of allergies to light.

Not too informed about food allergies? Here are some need-to-know facts!

  • One in thirteen children have a food allergy which translates to almost two in every classroom
  • Almost 40% of children with food allergies have already experienced a life threatening reaction
  • Every three minutes, a child is sent to the emergency room as a result of a severe reaction
  • U.S. families pay roughly $25 billion every year to care for a child with a severe allergy

How to get involved with FARE:

  • The FARE Walk for Food Allergy will be held on October 4th in Chicago's Lincoln Park! Make a team with family, friends, or even coworkers and sign up!
  • Join the FARE Advocacy Network to make your voice heard about allergies and how to either cope with having one or supporting someone who does (foodallergyadvocacy.org)
  • FARE offers amazing personalized campaigns and fundraisers for several events

 

Mother's Day Guide

She Beads' Best Gifts for Mom

If we could only buy our Mothers a gift to thank them for all that they do, still do, have done, and will do for us. WE LOVE MOMS! Half the time we forget all the wonderful/gross things that they have done for us... dirty diapers anyone? And how about all those life lessons that we've tried to get right... even today. So, consider this list a small guide to thanking Mom for all those lunches she packed. 

  

So, let's begin. Where can you always find mom?

In the garden:

Shop all the new Mother's Day flower-power designs

At the Blackhawks game:

In her new meditation room:

 

Running errands:

 

At the next fundraiser:

 

With her girlfriends:

Hmmm... She's quite one-of-a-kind: 

           Shop all One-of-a-Kind items

Our African Trade Bead Backstory

There we were in the parking lot out behind our studio on a freezing cold day in December checking out what the guy who knocked on our door was selling out of his van. Shady? Safe? Legit?

Completely safe and legit. We were more than happy to see Ebrima Sillah of Bead Paradise II in Oberlin, Ohio, who swung by with TONS of beautiful, handmade African trade beads. In the cold, we peered into the many tubs of beads in the van and picked a few to bring inside.

And that’s when the fun began! We were in hog heaven as Ebrima pulled out strand after strand of the most gorgeous beads. And, we learned so much from him about African trade beads—including those made in Venice, Italy with millefiori techniques—just like what we do at She Beads with our clay canes!

The antique glass trade beads were mainly produced in the 1600s-1800s in Europe. They were used by European merchants to trade with African peoples for palm oil, spices, precious stones, gold and ivory. However, there are even older African trade beads (called “ancient”) that were made as long as 2,000 years ago out of natural materials (such as amber, wood and coral) by tribal people throughout West and East Africa.

Newer varieties of African trade beads are made from recycled glass in Ghana and batik bone in Kenya, both of which is what we bought. We were glad to hear that Bead Paradise has long-standing relationships with many bead traders who typically run a small family business (like us) and are creating job opportunities in their communities.

Out of everything Ebrima showed us, Sandy picked out the beads in colors she used to create the Pistachio arm candy bracelets and necklaces. I picked out beads in two color sets—one for the Crème Brûlée collection and one for the Raspberry Tart collection. Inspired by the gorgeous colorful beadwork of African culture, each color story holds the history and traditions of West Africa. In each one, we were inspired to create some new, unique designs, like the Sheath necklace with 

Shop our new collections in Pistachio, Crème Brûlée and Raspberry Tart!

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