Swabian knitted beadwork – a long-forgotten, once flourishing branch of the textile industry. Production followed on a state measure in the early 19th Century to generate work for a poverty-stricken population in southern Germany. This cottage industry, with an ever-expanding range of products, reached its peak around 1925: its specialty luxury items. In the 19th century, the articles were delivered to the Netherlands and in the twentieth shipped overseas to the USA.
The 102 exhibitors – manufacturers, vendors, artisans and bead artists – from 18 countries* had come – some from afar (one team of exhibitors even drove 3,000 km/1,864 miles by car from the middle of Russia). The visitors, whether new to beading or old hands, were professionally interested and ready to buy. Everyone had been excitedly waiting for this event; many from abroad among them (including Japan, Switzerland, Austria, Poland, Slovakia, England, the USA, Holland, Belgium, Italy and France, to name a few).