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The Bead Machine

A TRUE STORY! A student told this story to the Beadwrangler during a Bead Embellishment class at the University of South Florida about three years ago.

"When I was a little girl, which was about 60 years ago, my sister and I would string beads and make necklaces, bracelets and daisy chain belts. When we ran out of beads we would run to our Mother and ask for more. She would always smile, ask to see what we made with our last beads, and then tell us she would have to get out the Bead Machine to make some more beads! We would always beg to see the Bead Machine but she said only she knew how to make it work. She said the beads had to be made without any little girls watching. That was just the way it worked. She would go up to the attic and make us stay downstairs. Soon we would hear this whirrrrrrrrr, whirrrrr, whirrrrr sound coming from above and knew we would soon have new beads! It was so exciting; we never knew what colors that machine would make each time.

"After what seemed like forever, our Mother would reappear with all kinds of beads in many colors and sizes in her hands. We would grab up the beads, thank her with a kiss, and head back to our stringing area.

"Several times when our Mother left the house on errands we ran up to the attic and looked for the Bead Machine, but never found it. All that was up there was an old treadle sewing machine and some other junk.

"Years later I realized the Bead Machine was my Mother running the old treadle sewing machine to make us think she was making beads. I often think how much she loved us to spend that time adding mystery to our bead experience and making it more exciting than just handing us some packages of beads she purchased at the store. My Mother gave us moments from her very busy life; a very precious gift."

And that is the story of the Bead Machine.