BeadCrate Subscription Box Review – September 2019
BeadCrate is a monthly subscription box for beading enthusiasts. Choose from “The Enthusiast” for $18.99 a month or “The Collector” for $35 a month. You can also buy a single box to see if this subscription is for you.
This is a review of “The Enthusiast,” which is $18.99/month + $5 shipping.
My Subscription Addiction pays for this subscription. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
The Subscription Box: BeadCrate
The Products: A selection of beads curated around a monthly theme (or beads that are just cool and random).
The Cost: $18.99 a month + $5 shipping. Save with longer subscriptions.
Ships to: The US (free for “The Collector,” $5 for “The Enthusiast”)
BeadCrate September 2019 “Harvest” Review
BeadCrate is great for stash-building if you are into seed beads and Czech glass, and you’ll also usually get some useful supplies:
This letter/information sheet accompanied the shipment. This month has a lot of warm, fall colors.
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!
18 x 21mm Quest Floral Crown Toggle (USA pewter, 1)
You’ll usually get a charm or two, or a metal bead with BeadCrate. This time, we got a clasp. It was a no-brainer to use this in my project this month. I really like the details here.
3mm Amethyst Druks (Czech glass, 50)
This is a pretty basic shape and good to keep around for patterns, stitches like right-angle weave, various spiral stitches, and similar projects. This light purple goes pretty well with the color palette I tend to stick to, so there is a lot in my stash to match these beads as well.
3mm Siam Ruby English Cut Rounds (Czech glass, 50)
English cut rounds have a different faceting pattern than standard firepolished beads and can be interesting to include in projects when you want to play with texture a little. These also would work in pretty much any pattern that calls for 3mm rounds.
16 x 11mm Tanzanite Grape Bunches (Czech glass, 3)
You’ll usually receive a little bit of pressed glass in fun shapes in BeadCrate. This month, it was these grape bunches, which are perfect for the harvest theme. The color is also pretty. I haven’t used them yet but I am thinking back through all the different botanical items I know are in my stash and figuring out a way to use all of that together, perhaps in a charm bracelet.
Harvest Moon Mix (Czech glass, 36)
Lately we’ve been getting a few glass mixes that totally fit the monthly theme. These have fall colors and the moons and owls also put me in a fall kind of mood. These would be good in earrings or a bracelet (or do both and make a matching set).
6 x 8mm Topaz Nuggets (Czech glass, 25)
These are a little bit on the larger side compared to some of this month’s other beads. I see them more as accent beads in a bracelet or necklace, perhaps with some warm-toned brass metallic beads and maybe some vintage acrylic.
4 x 6mm Opaque Olive Travertine Pellets (Czech glass, 30)
Here is the first set of shaped beads for the month. You’ll usually receive one type of shaped bead and sometimes more. I am a fan of the travertine finish, of course. I like using pellets with Tee beads because of how they interlock, but this month I used these in place of 4mm rounds in a bracelet (it worked because these are about 4mm in the stringing direction).
7mm Jet/Amber Pinch Beads (Czech glass, 25)
I recently learned that these came in three different sizes (though some of the sizes, including these 7mm ones, can be hard to find in the US). If you are looking to expand your collection of pinch beads, this website has a lot (but just FYI they only ship UPS from the Czech Republic so you will want to place a large bead order to make the shipping cost worth it and you will get your order in like a week which is better than some US-based stores). Anyway, there are a lot of patterns for smaller pinch beads that I think could work with these larger ones if I moved from 11/0 seed beads to 8/0 seed beads, so I’m going to try that.
6mm Dark Amethyst Firepolished Rounds (Czech glass, 25)
These are quite pretty and would go well with the grape bunches from up above. Or just in any pattern that called for 6mm firepolished rounds. These would look nice with metal of pretty much any color, as well.
Toho 11/0 Transparent Garnet (Japanese glass, 2.5” tube)
You’ll usually get size 11/0 seed beads in BeadCrate (typically just one color, sometimes two, and sometimes you’ll get 8/0 instead). This is a lovely color and I was able to use some of these in a bracelet this month, which you can see below.
9mm Topaz Flat Squares (Czech glass, 25)
I like flat squares. I have a bracelet from a past BeadCrate where I made some dangles using flat squares and copper wire and I wear it quite often. I will probably do something similar with these.
8mm Assorted Colors Tipp Beads (Czech glass, 20)
Here is yet another type of shaped bead. Tipp beads are a challenge to use because they are 8mm and a lot of patterns call for 6mm beads (tiles, the 6mm 2-hole cabochons, candy beads, discduos, honeycomb beads, etc.). There aren’t as many 8mm beads so there aren’t as many patterns for 8mm beads. I did find a pattern that worked with these (link below) and used them in a bracelet this month. Assorted colors were possible but I got this color, which is probably called something like “white mint luster” or possibly “opaque light green luster” depending on where you go shopping for it.
4mm Light Topaz Firepolished Rounds (Czech glass, 50)
4mm firepolished rounds are easy to find uses for as so many patterns call for them and they are great in right-angle weave and they are small enough and light enough for earrings, as well. I used these in a bracelet this month.
I thought I could probably find a pattern for Tipp beads and 11/0 seed beads and I was right. This is Deb Roberti’s Pinnacle Bands pattern, which you can purchase here. I used the 4mm firepolished rounds as well. This pattern actually calls for two types of 4mm beads but Pellet beads are 4 x 6mm and the 4mm dimension was in the direction I needed, so I used those instead and it turned out well. I’d probably opt for a brass clasp if I had this to do on my own, but I used the clasp provided in the box and it worked well. This project was made entirely of supplies from this month’s BeadCrate (other than some 4 lb test Fireline and a size 12 Tulip beading needle). I made a fairly short bracelet but had a few of each type of bead left over so if your wrist is bigger than mine you could still make this pattern.
Verdict: I did not calculate a value for BeadCrate, as explained above in my note about prices. If you divide the cost of the box plus shipping by the number of items (I counted 13), you get about $1.84 per item. I started looking for patterns online and found one that I managed to make work using only beads from the box (it was low risk since I’ve tried many of Deb Roberti’s patterns before and know they are easy to follow). I love bright and saturated fall colors and also shaped beads so this was a really good box for me.
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, your subscription would start with the October box if you order by 10/1. Destash items and excess inventory (and sometimes whole boxes) may occasionally be available in the BeadCrate Etsy shop.
Value Breakdown: At $23.99 for this subscription (counting shipping), you are paying about $1.84 per item.
Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!
What did you think of the September 2019 BeadCrate? Do you subscribe to any beading or craft boxes?