This lariat pictured was created for a Bead and Button monthly design challenge. Chosen as a winning design, a photograph was included in the August 2019 magazine issue.
Every December finds me searching for beading contests that will take place in the upcoming year. One of my favorites, Bead Dreams, is no longer being held, but there are still plenty of other options. Fire Mountain Gems offers seed bead and metal contests and there is no fee to enter. New this year is the Museum of Beadwork challenge. They have a call for entries for the Wings and Stings competition. They are also asking for beaded squares measuring 6"x6". A "quilt" made from the assembled squares is planned. The beaded square project will be a permanent display in the new museum.
More information on entering can be found on their website.
Another place to check is your local bead store. Some offer monthly design challenges. Many times the only requirement is the purchase of the beads from their shop. This is a great way to support your local store while expanding your design abilities.
I mentioned Bead Dreams earlier; it was sponsored by a magazine that is no longer in publication. There are still other magazines and bead shows, and they also sponsor contests. Beadfest is held in August at a venue outside of Philadelphia. This show is connected to Beadwork magazine. 2020 was the first year since 2014 that they held a formal contest and going forward I hope that they will continue to do so.