Bert White, owner of the Potomac Bead Company

Bert White, owner of the Potomac Bead Company

The Potomac Bead Company, located in a spare, loft-like space at 109 West Washington Street ( in what was once part of the old Ziegler’s Department Store) opened one week ago.

Bert White, owner of the imported bead emporium said, “We are located in Medina because of the great, historic Square. Not only is it attractive, but it’s a very active place.  We like to be in historic downtown areas.  It’s an atmosphere that appeals to us as a company.”

The store is, of course, filled with beads – millions of beads in a dazzling display of shapes, sizes, and hues.  There are Swarovski crystal beads and Czech glass beads.  There is lampwork glass (intricate beads made by melting glass with a torch and wrapping it around a metal rod) and bone and wooden beads from Africa.  And there are gem stones and glass beads from every continent except Antarctica.

Which begs the question: what does one do with all these beads?

Bert White counters with a Zen-like reply, “Teach a person to fish…”

The Potomac Bead Company is a jewelry-maker’s paradise — from the professional to the  amateur. They feature custom-designed and ready-made jewelry, as well as an extensive schedule of classes, ranging from Children’s Basic Beading to Watch Making to the Swarovski Diagonal Stitch. They also sell everything required to make jewelry: findings (clasps, etc.), wire tools and books.

Classes are held upstairs in an area that features elegant tables and upholstered chairs custom-made by the Norwalk Furniture Company.  Bert White, who hails from Norwalk, is also a Norwalk Furniture Overstock Retailer, and should a customer take a fancy to any of those tables or chairs, he’d be happy to sell.

The Potomac Bead Company is a franchise founded in 2005 in Hagerstown, Maryland, with 10 shops including locations in Chambersburg, PA, Alexandria, VA, Ft. Myers, FLA, and Glasgow Scotland.

For more photos of the Potomac Bead Company, click here.

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