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BeadCrate Subscription Box Review – August 2020

BeadCrate is a monthly subscription box for beading enthusiasts. They offer “The Enthusiast” for $18.99 a month  + $5 shipping and “The Collector” for $35 a month + free shipping. 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.)

About BeadCrate

The Subscription Box: BeadCrate

The Cost: $18.99 a month + $5 shipping. Save with longer subscriptions.

The Products: A selection of beads curated around a monthly theme (or beads that are just cool and random).

Ships to: The US (free for “The Collector,” $5 for “The Enthusiast”)

BeadCrate August 2020 Review

BeadCrate is great for stash-building if you are into seed beads and Czech glass, and you’ll also often get some useful supplies:

This letter/information sheet accompanied the shipment. This month’s theme is “What’s your angle?” and all the beads had recognizable geometric shapes.

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.

10 x 8mm Emerald Antique Style Faceted Ovals (Czech glass, 3)

You’ll usually get a couple of types of “fancy” Czech glass beads; they could be any shape, really, and there will typically be 3-5 of each type. If you are looking for beads to use in earrings or stackable chain necklaces or bracelets, or on either side of a focal bead or pendant in a necklace, these are great for that. The greens here go well with some of the other greens and blues from this month, too.

12mm 2-Hole Hex Pyramids, Assorted Colors (Czech glass, 6)

You’ll also usually get at least one “shaped” or 2-hole bead. This month it was these hex pyramids. I saw these and immediately knew that I would use them this month, since I had seen a bracelet in a marketing email that used similar beads. As it happens these had a coating that matched a little with this month’s seed beads, but since they were sent in assorted colors, I’m not sure that was true for everyone.

12mm Capri Blue Picasso Drop Triangles (Czech glass, 4)

I like flat shapes (circles, squares, and triangles) so I was happy to see these. They’re also a pretty color, and unlike other beads in my stash. I think I will attempt to make some wire-wrapped earrings with these.

Tierracast 3/4″ Antique Brass Woven Disc Link (US pewter, 1)

Here is another item that would be great in a minimalist stackable chain bracelet, or you could make some simple seed bead chains for the sides. You’ll usually get one Tierracast (or sometimes other company) charm or link or something in this subscription, although this month we received two. “Pewter” these days refers to a lead-free alloy.

3mm Black Diamond English Cut Rounds (Czech glass, 50)

There are always a few strands of accent beads or spacer beads, sometimes just firepolished rounds, but these are English cut instead of the usual firepolished shape. However, they are substitutable for basically any 3mm bead in a pattern (crystal, firepolished round, glass pearl, etc.). This is a pretty versatile color, as well.

5 x 7mm Cube Beads, Assorted Colors (Czech glass, 15)

I am not disappointed to have received metallic hot pink…I actually have a lot of beads in coordinating colors. I haven’t seen too many patterns that use this type of bead so I may have to come up with my own. (Does anyone else find it funny that something is called a “cube” when the sides are different lengths?)

Toho 11/0 Metallic Iris Purple Hex Beads (Japanese glass, 10g)

These are different! Although we have received bugle beads in the past, I think this is the first time we’ve received hex cut seed beads. As it happens, these had a finish that went nicely with the hex pyramids, so I used them together. These have a bit sharper edges than other seed beads so be sure to use sturdy thread if you’re going to be doing beadweaving (I used 6 lb test Nanofil, the holes in these are large enough for multiple passes with that and possibly even with 8 lb test if you have a needle that will fit it).

25mm Backlit Vapor Round Cabochon (Czech glass, 1)

I like this and will probably use it in a bracelet, but will need to find some subset of beads to use as a bezel around it that have similar or coordinating colors, or else glue it to a bead embroidery foundation. Either would work.

28 x 19mm Tierracast Antique Brass Criss-Cross Link (US pewter, 1)

Here is another Tierracast item. I wasn’t familiar with this collection before (Tierracast releases new items in themed collections) but I’m going to have to try to figure out what it is called so I can see what other items are included. For what it’s worth, Tierracast usually provides their items in 3 or 4 different finishes so you can take your pick, although both of mine had an oxidized brass finish this month.

4mm Firepolished Rounds, Milky Sapphire (Czech glass, 50)

Here are some firepolished rounds. It would be unusual to get a subscription containing Czech glass beads without at least some firepolished rounds. This is a pretty blue color although I’m not sure how well I think it coordinates with this month’s other beads. But not to worry, I have an enormous stash and I’m sure there are at least some other blues in there. 4mm rounds are great for patterns, too.

3mm Firepolished Rounds, Peridot AB (Czech glass, 50)

And even more firepolished rounds! You’ll usually get more than one size. This is a color that’s well-represented in the glass beads in my stash and another size that’s good for use in patterns. I wonder if I can find some 3mm gemstone rounds and use those in a bracelet spaced apart by these every now and then. Will have to check, because I have several items of clothing that would look good with something like that.

6mm Crystal Crackle Beads (Czech glass, 50)

I had an obsession with crackle glass about 20 years ago and I have more of it than I could ever use but, interestingly, not in this color. 6mm rounds can be used in some patterns, and I definitely also have a lot of 6mm round gemstone beads if I just want to make something simple.

6mm Half Firepolished Beads (Czech glass, 25)

I like these and black is a useful color to receive. I have seen these a few places for sale over the years but they never really took off (at least not in the US). These could be great to use instead of 6mm rounds in a pattern if you want whatever you make to lie flatter when it is on, or if you are doing bead embroidery and want them snug against your foundation.

Here is a bracelet I made this month:

 

First I made some cubic right-angle weave tubes from the seed beads, then I strung them on beading wire alternating with the hex pyramids. I made only two at a time because until I was farther along with the bracelet, I couldn’t tell how many tubes I would need. I was basing this on a picture I had seen and I think it turned out well, and that you could make a lot of different variations by changing out the hex pyramids for square pyramids, 12mm candy beads, the larger candy oval beads, or using smaller seed beads and a 6mm or 8mm central element.

 

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 would say this was a representative month for Bead Crate — you can always expect some quality Czech glass including a few unique beads and some basics, as well as some pewter or metallic findings/components and some seed beads. I was able to try making something I’d been interested in doing for awhile but put my own spin on it, and I still have a lot of beads left to play with, so I am happy.

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? Your subscription would likely start with the September box. 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.

Check out my past BeadCrate reviews and visit the Craft Subscription Box List for more great beading, craft supply, and DIY project boxes.

Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!

What did you think of the August 2020 BeadCrate? Do you subscribe to any beading or craft boxes?

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Written by Ragan Buckley

Ragan Buckley

Ragan stumbled across My Subscription Addiction in late 2013 and immediately subscribed to way too many beauty boxes. She’s now focused on boxes for her cats and dog, vegan/vegetarian food boxes, and craft subscriptions (and she didn’t give up beauty boxes entirely).

Posted in BeadCrate Reviews, Craft Subscription Boxes, Subscription Box Reviews, Subscription Boxes for Women| Tags: beadcrate | 2 comments

Comments (2)

  1. Ragan, I absolutely love your bead work, I think you are so talented and creative. I truly look forward to seeing what you create each month with this subscription. Aside from your creations, I also love reading through your entire review as I really enjoy learning about the materials. It’s fun to see which beads you’ve used before, have in your stash, are new to you and just reading through your process of looking at what you’ve received in the sub and how you are going to use it. As far as the milky sapphire firepolished rounds, I was thinking they might look nice incorporated into a piece with the backlit vapor round cabochon bead. The light brings out a hint of a lighter blue in the cabochon that looks very similar to the little milky sapphire rounds. 🤷🏻‍♀️ Who knows though, lol. I actually am not a header and unfortunately have no artistic abilities whatsoever so I live vicariously through people such as yourself that do!!! Take care! Looking forward to next months review already! 😄

  2. I love your bracelet.

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