Without jewelry, pearls would be nothing but oyster gallstones and treasure chests would contain nothing but dirty back issues of The Economist. Embrace the power of bling with today's Groupon: for $20, you get $40 worth of finished jewelry at Bead Me by Linda Minor.
As a former jewelry buyer for major department stores, Linda Minor summons her passion for fashion and sparkle toward bedecking bodies in eclectic, handcrafted designs in her own boutique. Adorn bare ears with a pair of soldered sterling earrings, which capture glimmering flecks of sunlight and runaway trains of thought ($35). An imperial-turquoise bracelet commandeers unarmed wrists ($30), and a copper-wire-wrapped ring drapes delicate digits in glinting strands of 16-gauge copper wire ($20). Bead Me also vends a shining medley of copper and silver watches, which make reliable replacements for inconvenient wind-up sundials ($50–$75).
Shimmering strands of brightly hued beads line cloth-covered display tables in this softly lit, intimate boutique. In addition to hand-strung jewelry, the gallery also displays paintings, fabric designs, and woodturning designs created by local and international artisans and egotistical trees. Visit the jewel shop during the South End Gallery Crawl on the first Friday of each month to view wearable artwork while munching refreshing comestibles.
Bead Me by Linda Minor
Linda Minor, a member of the North Carolina Society of Goldsmiths and a former fashion buyer for J.C. Penney and Belk department stores, sells handmade creations within Bead Me’s spacious shop. Her first designed jewelry, which has been recognized as American-made by Martha Stewart, was chosen to be given to First Lady Michelle Obama on behalf of the city of Charlotte, NC. She draws from her style expertise to create necklaces, earrings, and bracelets with pearls, coral, turquoise, Swarovski crystals, and semiprecious gemstones. Many of her pieces incorporate copper, an antimicrobial metal that resists fading. During fun, BYOB jewelry-making classes, Linda imparts her beading know-how to students of all skill levels, giving them hands-on practice with metal-manipulation techniques such as fold forming and reverse psychology.