Dollar Bead Box is a monthly delivery of beads and beading products. During a given month, reorder your favorite items from the Dollar Bead Box shop for just $1. (This deal is only available to subscribers.)
My Subscription Addiction pays for this subscription. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
About Dollar Bead Box
The Subscription Box: Dollar Bead Box
The Products: Beads and beading-related items including but not limited to stringing materials, Swarovski crystals, vintage glass, freshwater pearls, buttons, and more.
The Cost: $19.50 + $4.50 shipping for the Dollar Bead Box or $8 for the Dollar Bead Bag (4 strands of 3 mm Czech Fire Polish Beads and 4 strands of 4 mm Czech Fire Polish Beads in every bag); free shipping with 3- and 6-month subscriptions (plus get an additional discount on 6-month subscriptions)
Ships to: US ($4.50 on a month-to-month subscription, free with longer subscriptions)
Dollar Bead Box December 2018 Review
You’ll get a variety of different beads with this subscription. You can count on some strands and Czech glass nearly every month, but half the fun here is seeing what other random things show up. Let’s see what we got this month:
The box usually comes with an information sheet that has a letter on one side and an item list on the back.
A note on prices: Items like this can come from a variety of different suppliers at many price points depending on how many you buy, etc. I couldn’t find a lot of these exact beads from common sources (e.g., Fire Mountain Gems) and it’s of questionable value to pick something similar because a slight difference in grading or size or material and you are looking at half or double the price (or an even greater difference). Even different colors of the same size and shape of glass beads are priced differently due to materials needed to make the colors!
Czech Fire Polished 4mm Rounds in Green Turquoise Nebulous Luster (50)
This is a good color that would have fit nicely with the other beads in my stash and be super useful in patterns, except I ended up using most of them in a bracelet and don’t have too many left…
Czech Fire Polished 6mm Rounds in Matte Bronze Hematite (20)
You’ll usually receive some larger firepolished rounds (I count 6mm and 8mm as “larger”) in Dollar Bead Box. This is a matte metallic that will work in quite a few color schemes.
16mm Czech Glass Ammonite in Jet Black (2)
These are cool. There are a lot of interesting nature-inspired beads coming out lately (trilobites, elephants, owls, leaves, and ever so many flowers) but I think this is one of the first times I’ve seen ammonite spirals in this size. Black is easy to match with other colors, too.
5 x 9 mm Chinese Crystal Cut Rectangle in Periwinkle Rainbow Iris (4)
This is an unusual bead shape (I’ve seen a small amount of other Chinese crystal in this shape as well) which I think looks nice next to the Swarovski flatbacks down below (if you don’t have a problem mixing Swarovski with less expensive items, anyway).
12mm Pewter Toggle Clasp in Antique Brass (1)
You’ll usually get a few findings and often a clasp or two in this box. This was super useful and you will see it in the bracelet I made (scroll down for the picture).
8mm Czech Glass Curved Cube in Crystal with White Opal (6)
These are of a size that I think would be best in a strung design. I think I will use them in a bracelet with some faceted firepolished beads in a similar diameter and maybe some white semiprecious beads (I’ll have to look and see what I have) and/or metal rondelles (the ones with the little crystals around the edge).
16 x 23 mm Pewter 3-Strand Connector (2)
The information booklet listed these as antique copper finish but they are clearly antique brass finish, which actually works out better for me because I was able to use them in the same piece with the clasp, which you can see below.
Czech Glass 4mm Druk in Opaque Red Gold Luster (35)
I hoard 4mm rounds for patterns and this is a fun finish. It kind of reminds me of the holidays but I also think it might work in fall designs. I do sometimes hold on to beads from this subscription for a long time (months or more) and use them later.
20mm Czech Glass Elephants in Turquoise with Gold Wash (2)
We’ve received some other elephants from this subscription but they’re always different colors. These are about at the limit, size-wise, of what I would put in earrings, but anyway, I think they are pretty neat.
3 x 5 mm Czech Glass Pinch Beads in Matte Jet (35)
This is a good, basic color for a shaped bead. I have a lot of pinch beads in my collection but I actually don’t think I have any black so these will come in handy.
25mm Porcelain Tabular Round in Olive Topaz (1)
This is pretty big (for me) and I think it is best suited to being a necklace focal. I think this color lends itself nicely to being used with some beads of natural materials (wood, shell, etc.) and goldtone findings.
22 x 29mm Porcelain Tabular Rectangle in Olive Topaz (1)
This one, for me, has similar considerations as the one above. I guess if I come up with a second design idea, I can use one in each!
Czech Glass 6mm Rondelle in Peach Rainbow Iris (45)
This color puts me in mind of spring. I don’t know of any patterns that use this shape of rondelle, but it would certainly work in delicate strung designs.
Czech Glass 4mm English Cut in Olive Luster (25)
I do know of some patterns that use English cut beads (actually they can usually substitute for 4mm rounds or firepolished beads) and I’ve been trying to build my stash of them (just ordered a ton from Etsy, actually…).
4mm Swarovski Xilion Rose SS16 in Crystal Metallic Blue Foiled (14)
You’ll often get a Swarovski product in this subscription. These are flatbacks without the hotfix glue on the back so you will need to provide your own glue (2-part epoxy even sticks them to metal, I’ve found) or embed them in air-dry clay or something. I’ve been trying to grow my collection of flatbacks so these are welcome.
9mm Beehive in Jet Black (6)
This is another shape I don’t think I’ve seen before. They seem like they would look good with the ammonites because of the shared-but-slightly-different spiral pattern.
6mm Vintage German Glass Round in Opaque White with Yellow and Blue (12)
I have a soft spot for vintage beads, and a rather large collection of them, including a lot of white ones that would look good in a necklace that incorporated these here and there for a small pop of color.
Here is a bracelet I made with three bead types, the connectors, and the clasp. I need to get some more crimp covers to make the ends look nicer (I have some but they are all stuck together and I can’t figure out how to get them apart without seriously deforming them). I had seen the advice to secure crimps a little more with some superglue and I did that, but it made things a little stiff. In the future, I think I need to take a bit more time and do that more carefully or at least get one of those superglue dispensers with the needle-like applicator so I have more precise application.
Verdict: I did not calculate a value for the December 2018 Dollar Bead Box, for reasons explained above. There were 17 items so if you divide the cost of the box by the number of items, it is about $1.15 per item. There were some interesting and unusual items this month, which I can always count on when it comes to Dollar Bead Box, but also some great, stash-building basics.
Please note that no directions are given and you have to supply your own needles, stringing materials, tools, and findings.
To Wrap Up:
Can you still get this box if you sign up today? No, but if there is an item that appeals to you, if you become a Dollar Bead Box member, you can order items from past Dollar Bead Boxes from the Dollar Bead Box shop for $1 each (plus shipping).
Value Breakdown: At $19.50 for this subscription, you are paying about $1.15 per item.
Check out all of our Dollar Bead Box reviews and the Craft Subscription Box Directory!
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What did you think of the January 2019 Dollar Bead Box? Do you subscribe to any beading or craft boxes?
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