Recently, I visited one of my favorite bead stores: Nawbin Beads in Traverse City!
I've known the family for ages. I remember seeing Tom and Julie at the Gem & Lapidary shows in metro Detroit, and they'd bring me a little bag of cherries. It was always wonderful to talk about vintage and antique beads with them and their kids, Karl and Kathryn--they're incredibly knowledgeable, and always fun!
Their store is located in an old general store in Traverse City, and it's absolutely jam-packed with amazing treasures. They have an eclectic mix of lovely beads and beading supplies.
One of the things I love best about them is that they carry semiprecious stone from Michigan such as Petoskey stone (a form of fossil coral) and Leland blue. They also carry Fordite, made from discarded bits of paint from Detroit automobile paint factories. And if you want to polish your own Petoskey stones, you can purchase "Professor Nawbin's Petoskey Stone Polishing Kit!"
They have incredible taste in beads. Giant chunks of copal, a fantastic array of seed beads, and even finished jewelry grace every inch of display space possible. They've carried African trading beads for ages and they have a wonderful collection of vintage and antique beads.
I love a store with a touch of the past, and the beautiful ceiling and antique cash register are wonderful details.
If you're ever in Traverse City, you should stop by Nawbin Beads. You won't regret it!
Nawbin Beads is located at 925 East Front Street in Traverse City, MI, 49686. You can reach them at (231)932-9514 or by email. You can also visit the Nawbin Etsy shop and the Nawbin Facebook fanpage.