Not Attending The Gathering? You can still swap beads and join the fun!
Don't be shy! Contact:
Domestic US & International Swapmaster: Juliet Page
-or- sign up on the Facebook Gathering Page
The purpose of this bead swap is to provide everyone the opportunity to experience the fun of swapping beads and the relationships that can be forged with fellow members.
• In order to participate you must be able to make and submit by mail TEN beads that have been properly annealed, have no sharp/dangerous edges, and are sturdy enough to survive being shipped twice and worn by a new owner should they so desire.
• In order to swap, you must be able to send U.S. funds by PayPal or a check that will be used to pay return postage.
• You must be a current ISGB member to participate.
• You will be swapping in a group of up to ten members, led by an assigned “swapmaster”. You will send ten beads and receive nine different beads made by members of all different ability levels. The tenth bead goes to the swapmaster.
HERE IS HOW YOU JOIN THE 2023 ISGB BEAD SWAP
• SIGN UP by putting your name and hometown in a reply to the SWAP post on the ISGB Gathering page. There is only one spot to do this. The post is from Juliet Paige and it says “Comment here to sign up for the Annual ISGB BEAD SWAP, only the first 100 members to sign up are eligible.”
• You will receive a confirmation that you are in the swap AND YOU WILL BE ADDED TO A PRIVATE FB GROUP CALLED “ISGB 2023 BEAD SWAP”! In that group you can ask questions and schmooze with other swappers. Swapmaster Coordinator Juliet Page will be on hand, and so will the members of the ISGB Board and ISGB staff.
• You will be assigned to a swap group with a swapmaster who is a volunteer and ISGB member who is also not attending this year’s Gathering.
• Participants will be randomly assigned to a group. You will receive the name of your swapmaster and info on where the beads should be sent.
• You will be contacted by Facebook message and also email, using the information in the ISGB membership directory. Please take a moment to check that your information on file is accurate by contacting Karyn at the ISGB home office or by email (firstname.lastname@example.org).
HERE IS HOW YOU PARTICIPATE IN THE SWAP
• Make ten glass beads. Most swappers are not “experts”. All that is required is beads you are pleased with and happy to share. It isn’t a competition! These can be ten of the same style, or ten different bead styles.
• Package each bead individually in a little bag, wrapped very, very carefully with wrapping that can be reused, like bubble wrap, tissue etc. EACH BEAD should also be labeled with your name, contact info (like email, FB or website) and anything else you care to say.
• Package all ten individually wrapped beads into one single box .
*** In the United States, a Small Priority Mail box is a good example and what most use in the US to send and receive their beads. The small priority mail box is flat rate, so there are no surprises in cost, and the boxes are free. Insurance is included for value up to $50.00. You are also welcome to create a Click-N-Ship label, to send along with your beads for the return shipping and no need to worry about including a check or send money via PayPal.
It is your option whether or not to insure the package. How you send it is how it will be returned, e.g., if you send payment for insurance, it will be insured coming back to you. Again, the small priority flat rate box is covered for value up to $50.00.
• For International Packages, these boxes can be truthfully labeled as “gifts”. BUT INTERNATIONAL SWAPPERS SHOULD LEAVE A LOT OF LEAD TIME FOR THE BEADS TO TRAVEL TO THE U.S., INTERNATIONAL MAIL HAS BEEN KNOWN TO BE PROBLEMATIC AND/OR SLOW!
• Mail the package to your assigned swapmaster to be received no later than October 7, 2023 for both domestic & International. PUT YOUR NAME AND ADDRESS INSIDE THE BOX SO THE SWAPMASTER KNOWS WHERE TO SEND YOUR SWAP BEADS!
• If your beads are not received by October 16, 2023 for domestic and October 11, 2023 for international they may not be included in the swap and returned to you.
• The bead swap will be held at The Gathering (TBD) with a special meet and greet for all participants. We would like to be able to have as many people as possible receive their beads by that night! If you are not attending the Gathering we will share on our Facebook group too so you can be part of the fun.
• At the same time that you mail your beads, send the swapmaster the amount of money you paid for postage, or include a Click-N-Ship label. They will use that money to send the swap beads back to you. You can send funds with no fee through PayPal, or include a check or money order in with your beads when you mail them. If you have any individual concerns please contact your swapmaster.
WHAT HAPPENS NEXT
• The swapmaster will create packages of at least nine beads and send them to each participating member. The beads will be mailed out by the swapmasters as early as possible. Online virtual swap members should receive their beads so they may have them at the same time as those at The Gathering are swapping beads. (It is up to each swapmaster whether they include one of their own beads in the swap, they are already devoting plenty of time to this project, so they get swap beads whether or not they participate!)
• When you receive the swap beads, open them, admire and fondle them, think about the work that went into making them and getting them into your hands.
• Feel free to write to your fellow swappers and talk about beads, techniques, glass, and anything else.
• Post in the post‐virtual bead swap thread that will be on the Facebook ISGB Gathering page after all of the beads are mailed out. Feel free to post photos of the beads you received.
• Although it is open to all ISGB members, we recognize that International members will be inconvenienced to a greater degree. This is on our radar screen, we are exploring ways in which this could be more accessible and affordable for all International members. This time around, all swapmasters are located in the U.S.
** If you have a better idea for next year, we would love to hear from you – for instance, could ISGB members swap during one of the existing European or Japanese events?
• The swap groups are randomly assigned; there is no guarantee about the level of each participant’s ability. Try to have an open and receptive attitude about the beads you receive, it is not all about the beads, it is about the connections between members.
• Only commit if you are confident you can participate. If you don’t send in your beads, you are disappointing your fellow members who will receive fewer beads. Maybe you have ten beads on hand right now? Why not set them aside and keep them as your swap back ups, in case life gets in the way?
• Keep in mind, swapmasters are volunteers with their own lives, and some of them like chocolate!