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The Arts Scene: 'Bead retreats' unite artists and friends

On a Sunday afternoon in Tieton, the day after International Sculpture Day, a group of artists working with beads gathered at 617 on Tieton Square.

The event was one of two bead retreats held by the Bead & Body store in Yakima. Janine Kingsley, owner of the shop since 2006, shares that this is a “get-together for beaders and people who are crafters.” Says Kingsley: “We all just enjoy each other’s company, eat and have fun.”

The event has been happening for about 10 years.

“It is a lot of laughing and beading,” Kingsley says. Some people work on quilting, or just like to hang out and visit. She says she can have from seven to 17 people, but this day had 19. The buffet lunch was just as colorful as the variety of beads.

During the retreat, Renee Lazorik worked on a bead-embroidered doll that will eventually go into a shadowbox frame. Some beaded touches went on a doll created by Yusuf Incetas that is headed for the Membership Exhibition at the Larson Gallery, which opens in June.

While visiting her shop, Kingsley told me there will be another retreat in October. Her shop has been in business for 26 years; Cindy Pratt began the business in a two-story house near Fiddlesticks. It moved from there to Westpark, then eventually to where it’s now located in Chalet Place. The store has been in its current spot for 13 years.

The special experience at the store is that you can see and touch the beads. Seeing the colors and size of the beads is much different than buying through internet retailers.

The store is having a trunk show until May 25 featuring beads that are shipped in for three weeks; what doesn’t sell is sent back. It’s an opportunity to buy specialty beads and hard-to-find items.

You can learn more about future retreats and classes by contacting Bead & Body at 5623 Summitview Ave., Unit A, in Yakima.

• David Lynx is executive director of the Larson Gallery at Yakima Valley College. Learn more at

Reach Tammy Ayer at or on Facebook.

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