Beads and Embellishments

Beads and embellishments will add another dimension of style, color, and texture to your pieces. The possibilities are limitless. But the huge array of beads on the market can be delightful or just plain overwhelming. Almost any type of bead can be iispH in micro -macrame jewelry as long as it has a hole that is large enough to accommodate one or more strands of the cord. 4 - ply Waxed Linen tends to be thicker than l<Sg. nylon and has irregularities which cause the cord to be thicker in some places than others. For most beaded projects I prefer the nylon cord.

The following is a brief list of beads and embellishments that work well with micro - macrame cords.

1. Seed Beads and Pony Beads - Size 10° and 11 seed beads are usually the smallest seed beads that can be used with 18g. cord. Size 8C and 6° also work well. Keep in mind that when choosing seed beads, the larger the size number, the smaller the bead. For example, a size 10° seed bead is smaller than a size 8° seed bead. Bugle beads are also a good choice.

2. Czechoslovakian Glass Beads - I find that most of these beads have a hole that is large enough to accommodate 18g. cord. 1 especially like the "fire polish" beads in sizes 4 mm, 6 mm, and 8 mm. Swarovski and other crystal beads are similar but of a finer quality than fire polish. Vintage and new glass beads come in a wide variety of colors, shapes and sizes.

3. Bone Beads These beads look similar to ivory and usually have large holes that can accommodate heavier cords like waxed linen and hemp.

4. Heishe - Shell, reconstituted stone, and metal. Heishe comes in long skinny strands comprised of uniform flat discs.

5. Metal Beads - Gold, Silver, Bronze, Brass, as well as base metals and plated metals.

6. Semiprecious Stone and Pearl Beads - Their beauty is undeniable but be advised that these beads often have ver)' small holes that are unsuitable for macramé cords, so check the holes first before purchasing them for a project. Some holes can be enlarged with a bead reamer.

7. Specialty Beads - There are many other types of beads made from such materials as polymer clay, wood, organic materials, paper, shell, and more. Check out gem shows, bead fairs, and bead shops for the latest designer beads.

8. Embellishments - In addition to beads, designs can be enhanced with components such as stone donuts, metal charms, cabochons, old coins, buttons, dangles, and wire. Shaped arid/or hammered wire can make an interesting armature for a necklace or a brjoch.

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