Our occasional series on the best bead groups in Britain is back. This month we encounter royalty as we meet the Clacton Bead Queens.
Beading has been growing in popularity for a few years now and shows no signs of stopping. Almost four years ago The Clacton Bead Queens began their reign with just four members, now their group numbers well over twenty. They meet for a couple of hours on the second Saturday in every month at Sam’s Hall in Clacton-on-Sea. They describe themselves as a group of friendly ladies who just love beading.
Variety is the spice of bead groups
Activities are varied to say the least at the Clacton Bead Queens meetings. Each month they aim to do something different. Sometimes they try a club project or sometimes they bring their own projects in and just sit, chat and bead. They share ideas, solve beady problems and exchange ideas and information. This August they even took a break from beading and had a ‘Pimms at the Beach Hut’ afternoon. Now that is our kind of bead group! The picture featured shows a simple sieve ring project with effective results that the members tried earlier in the year. One of the royal ladies, Theresa, told us
We all made a ring and each one was different. It was a fun session and there is always someone to help you if you get stuck.
Bead my guest
Sometimes, the group has guest speakers. We always think this is a great idea. Added inspiration can soon send you off in a new beady direction you’d never have thought of before. As an example, Sandra from The Wool Cabin recently demonstrated French knitting with beads. This is a great way to use up leftover wool and odd beads. Previously the Red Hat Ladies took along their decorated hats and jewellery. At another meeting, two very experienced ladies who make the most fantastic bead sculptures paid the Bead Queens a visit.
Theresa told us:
We try to have a good mix of bead related speakers – it’s difficult to pin the speakers down as they are in great demand in the popular beading world. We also invite bead suppliers to come and sell at the club as not all our members have access to the web. Plus we organise trips to our local bead supplier Totally Beads who are based in Clacton. Nothing is better than a word of mouth recommendation i.e. if we find a good magazine or website, Beads Unlimited being one of them, we share it with the club.
Jewels in the crown
The Clacton Bead Queens are a welcoming bunch. They always encourage each other and everyone is always keen to see what has been made. When a group member brings their finished work to the table it is sure to be greeted with oohs and ahhs. The group has beaders of all levels of experience. Most importantly, there is always a royal welcome of tea, coffee and biscuits (normally chocolate)! The group charges a small fee of £3.50 a session for non-members which helps them cover the cost of the hall hire and refreshments. If you would like more info on The Clacton Bead Queens you can contact them via email on email@example.com You can also visit their Facebook site for regular updates and to see more of their lovely projects.
A prize every time!
This month a £50 Beads Unlimited online gift voucher will be given to The Clacton Bead Queens for their entertaining range of group activities! We would love the group to integrate their spoils into one of their monthly challenges and show us the results!
If you run or belong to a bead group and would like to appear on our blog please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. We would like a bit of background info – how the group began, what you do, any competitions you enter etc. plus two or three pictures including one of your group in action! Pictures should be good quality jpegs and no bigger than 5mb. We welcome any entries, whether you’re a team of two chatting about your latest purchases or a well oiled beading machine with a cast of thousands! A Beads Unlimited gift voucher could be winging its way to you for your efforts.