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Santa Fe, African Beads, and Bakai

Whenever in Santa Fe, the Santa Fe Flea Market is a must-go, as it is the Mother-of-All-Flea-Markets. And whenever I visit it, I am in heaven. Once when I got there very late, there were tables and tables of African beads, and I wanted to buy all of them. I was overwhelmed by the colors and textures of the beads.

My mantra is you can never have too many beads. People who collect beads understand this. Not only are they beautiful, but I believe I am holding history in my hand and I wonder, especially with African beads, where has this bead been, and how many hands have held the beads before they I fell in love with them and added this particular string of beads to my collection.

On one trip, I came very close to the Santa Fe Flea Market closing time and found the majority of bead traders were packing up. There was one particular bead trader, Bakai Saho, offered to unpack his beads for me. I told him that I could not take up his generous offer. I have done many art fairs and know how long it takes to pack and unpack all of your goods. I gave him my contact information and Bakai said, if he was ever in Fort Collins, he surely would look me up.

A year went by and totally forgot about Bakai until my cell rang. Bakai Saho was in Fort Collins. We finally arranged to get together and it was a start of a friendship, a collaboration and business venture.

I could tell many stories about Bakai, but maybe later. I did many markets with him selling his beads. This is where I fell with African beads and their stories. Beads are a mainstay in my jewelry. At Screen Door Studios, I have a wide selection of African beads for sale and many pieces of jewelry made from African beads, which continue to inspire me.

Stay tuned, as I plan on sharing the stories of my favorite beads and how I used them in my jewelry.

Horse and Dragon Brewery Hosts Screen Door Studios Trunk Show Saturday July 27th 2-5 PM

The owners of Horse & Dragon are hosting a trunk show of my recycled art on Saturday July 27th from 2-5 PM. Come taste their wonderful beer and see my bottle cap bead jewelry, tee shirt skirts and upcycled shirts in one of my favorite places in Fort Collins.

I love the quirkiness of Horse & Dragon Brewery. It’s so comfortable. It does not exude a corporate atmosphere. The brewery and tasting room have a hometown feeling. The tables are made from thick recycled wood, playing cards are readily available, and the music makes me want to get up and dance.

And every beer I have ever had at Horse and Dragon has been outstanding. After meeting Carol and Tim Corcoran, owners and visionaries of Horse & Dragon, I found we had a lot in common.

They have created a little brewery with a great heart. The heart of Horse & Dragon Brewery includes high quality beer, fantastic and dedicated employees that make my time in the tasting room fun, dedication to recycling and the environment, their passion for birds and bicycling, eco-friendliness and their love of international travel. It is at their patio I encountered my first bee hotel. We share many of the same values.

“We have dreamed of and planned for Horse & Dragon since our honeymoon, which we took in Napa Valley (the non-Colorado one) and during which we had every dinner at that beautiful wine country at a local brewpub.” says Tim and Carol Corcoran, owners of the visionary brewery Horse & Dragon Brewery of Fort Collins, Colorado. We are all lucky they chose Fort Collins to brew their magic.

“Thanks for sharing and caring for Earth with us.” The founders say and “its vital for people to relax and connect with each other in today’s increasingly busy, stressed, individualized, and disconnected world. Craft beer Is a fantastic and tasty way to accomplish this.”

Horse and Dragon is founded on four principles to make great beer, minimize their environmental footprint, treat everyone ethically and to be proactive members of our community.

I love birds and Tim and Carol put up a kestrel nesting box this winter. A pair of kestrels nested,and laid five eggs in the late spring. Only three birds survived due to the weather, and they recently fledged. The whole time the kestrels were in residence, Horse and Dragon live streamed their antics.

The black and red logo of Horse and Dragon speaks volumes how they feel about their beer. It’s strong, striking, unique and eye-catching. The logo is a combination of the Corcoran’s Chinese zodiac signs. Carol’s Chinese zodiac sign is the horse and Tim’s is the dragon. It reminds me of a coat of arms. I love their logo.

Before I met the owners of Horse and Dragon Brewery, I bought two half growlers of their beer at Pringles because their logo caught my eye. I coveted their bottle caps. I loved the logo that much.

I was pleased beyond belief when I walked into the Horse and Dragon tasting room. I had a meeting with Carol and showed her my jewelry. I was hoping it would be a good fit to sell in the tasting room. She immediately said, “Yes.” without blinking an eye further proving Horse and Dragon’s commitment to recycling and their commitment to being proactive members of their community. They embraced my art and passion for recycling.

A glass display case of Horse and Dragon bottle cap earrings, bracelets and necklaces are available for sale at the tasting room at 124 Racquette Drive, Fort Collins, Colorado. The tap room is open everyday twelve to six every day.