Vintage Bead Box Subscription Review + Coupon – December 2017
Vintage Bead Box is a monthly subscription box providing you with beads and findings manufactured between about 1930 and 1970. Choose from a themed box (limited numbers available) or a surprise mix.
My Subscription Addiction pays for this subscription. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
This review is of the Surprise Mix subscription ($25 a month).
The Subscription Box: Vintage Bead Box
The Cost: $25 a month. Save with 3 and 6-month subscriptions.
COUPON: Use code WELCOME20 to save 20% off your first box!
The Products: Beads and findings made from a variety of materials (glass, wood, semi-precious stones, metal, acrylic, etc.). Most were manufactured between 1930 and 1970.
Ships to: US (free), Worldwide (additional shipping charges will apply)
Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!
There isn’t a traditional information card with this box because owing to the nature of the contents, every “Surprise Mix” box could be a little different. This month’s card gave the details of a contest you can enter by posting your Vintage Bead Box creations on social media.
A note on prices: Because these beads are vintage, they can’t be purchased separately from any sources. Further, materials, country of manufacture, and more can be a little difficult to determine precisely. Thus, I have opted not to provide prices in this review.
Please note that no directions are given and you have to supply your own needles, stringing materials, tools, and findings.
You’ll get a lot of acrylic beads with this subscription but they are always different. This month, there were purple ones in a handful of shapes and sizes. I have a few left but I did use some of the round ones in a necklace.
More acrylic beads. You can see some of the facets in the pictures, which I think is kind of cool. I haven’t used these yet but I recently sorted my beads into trays based on color so now it will be super easy to dive into my stash and find complementary beads. These are very lightweight, which is also nice.
This is BIG! I actually have some bulky chain on order that I think will look good with this. I’ve been wanting to work with larger beads lately and this will give me a chance to do so.
This was very exciting to me. I am buying all kinds of chain lately but I have to say, the vintage chain is always the most interesting. There are styles you just don’t see very often anymore. I used the whole length of this in a necklace (pictures below).
The fun thing about vintage crystal is that there are a lot of shapes and styles that are hard to find these days. I definitely don’t have anything like these shapes in my collection, but I definitely do have a lot in this color, so I know I can come up with a great design for these.
Fake pearls are also pretty common with this subscription. I am really starting to enjoy coming up with ways to use them – more often than not, it is the pearls I reach for when I start working on a project for this box. I used some of the smaller ones to make a cluster (you’ll see what I’m talking about below) for part of a necklace.
The glass beads in this subscription are really fun. They’re just not styles you see elsewhere. These are a great color for me and I also like that there are a lot of them – I have an easier time coming up with ideas for a whole bunch of similar beads than when you only get a few.
These are basic rounds and I do believe they’re hematite (an iron-containing mineral) because they’re HEAVY. I used a few in a necklace but I have some left over for another project. I don’t have much hematite in my collection so I was happy to get more.
You’ll usually get some vintage seed or bugle beads with this subscription. I am not sure what size these are but I think I’d go with about a 10/0 (or thereabouts). Since they had a gold tone, I used them in my necklace to sort of draw things together with the antiqued brass look of the chain.
Here is a necklace I made with a lot of different components from the box. You’ll recognize the chain, but I also used the faux pearls, the purple acrylic beads, the hematite beads, and the seed beads. The cluster is permanently in place the way I constructed this, so I did cut the chin in half and added a clasp.
The pictures of this are kind of odd but this is so long (past my navel) that I couldn’t do my usual photography setup and I couldn’t use my necklace form.
Here is a closer view of the cluster.
And here are some little dangles I made for the ends of the chain with beads that match the cluster.
Verdict: I did not calculate a value for Vintage Bead Box, as explained above, but if you divide the total cost by the number of items, you are paying about $2.78 an item. This seems quite reasonable to me. If you browse Etsy or eBay, you can find similar groupings of vintage beads and findings for prices ranging from $2-$7 (and beyond). I opted for the surprise mix so there is an element of randomness, but I felt like there was a definite theme going on here (this is something I’ve been noticing more often of late), since everything coordinated really well.
For what it’s worth, everything arrives clean. I suspect at least some of it is from deconstructed vintage jewelry (but honestly, that is OK by me – I get fun beads and things stay out of the landfill). It is all clean and, so far, manufactured pretty well. Some beads show a little wear but that is part of the charm of working with vintage beads. Plus, a lot of the items are unusual and you’d have a hard time finding equivalents made from modern materials. I had fun making the necklace this month and am just amazed that it turned out looking exactly like the idea I had in my head when I got started.
What did you think of the December 2017 Vintage Bead Box? Do you subscribe to any beading or craft boxes?