Not only does Halstead Bead Inc. carry an excellent selection of beads and findings for the discerning jewelry designer, but last year they began sponsoring an annual Business Development Grant. This grant targets designers in the bridge jewelry market and is intended to give fresh, innovative designers an edge in an increasingly competitive market, made so by overseas designers and mass merchant retailers.
Bridge jewelry fills the gap between costume jewelry and fine jewelry. It is characterized by moderately priced precious metals like silver and copper along with embellishments such as semi-precious stone, pearls and crystals.
You can find the application for this grant at Halstead Bead's site as well as hints and tips for preparing the application. Halstead notes that the biggest weakness they saw in the 2006 applications was a clear understanding of a designer's target market, and they include some helpful information about this topic in the Hints and Tips section.
The winner will receive a $5,000.oo business grant, a $1,000 Halstead Bead, Inc. gift certificate, a full page profile in Halstead's catalog, and press releases in relevant industry publications, as well as a plaque. Last year's winner was Ananda Khalsa whose outstanding work is featured in this post.
Good luck to all who apply!