Stringing materials

thread and cord Thread and cord are great options for knotted designs. All the options below come in many colors and sizes.

| LEATHER CORD | Leather is sold by the yard in jewelry and fabric stores and by packaged lengths in craft stores. Select the cord by color and thickness, gauged in millimeters. | SILK OR NYLON BEADING THREAD | This very pliable thread is used primarily for knotted designs. Thread comes in a wide variety of colors and sizes, so make sure you get the right size for the beads you use or your bead holes will eat your knots. | F I R E L I N E | This very fine beading thread has a stiffness that helps ease it through beading needles, and also gives the finished piece strength. | ELASTICITY 1 M M ELASTIC CORD | This clear heavyweight elastic makes stringing larger beads a breeze. Always treat knotted elastic cord with a dot of glue to help prevent the knot from unraveling. For a more secure connection, this heavyweight variety is substantial enough to be crimped.

gold- and silver-plated Beadalon wire gold- and silver-plated Beadalon wire

Of the many specialty tools on the market, only a few are really necessary to get started with beadwork. I strongly suggest purchasing round-nose pliers, chain-nose pliers, crimping pliers, wire cutters and a sharp pair of scissors. You should be able to make all the projects in this book using just these tools.

n y pliers and wire cutters

|R0UND-N0SE PLIERS | Round-nose pliers have two smooth, round, tapered ends that facilitate shaping wire into coils, circles or loops. |CHAIN-NOSE PLIERS | Chain-nose or needle-nose pliers are commonly used in wire jewelry projects. They're perfect for holding the jewelry while wire ends get wrapped. Serrated pliers provide a tight grip but may mar the metal findings in the process. If you're working with precious metals or doing a lot of metalwork, it's a good idea to use nonserrated pliers. | CRIMPING PLIERS | Crimping pliers have specialized grooved ends that work together to squeeze a crimping tube flat. If you're only flattening a crimp bead or a small crimp tube, you may be able to substitute a pair of needle-nose pliers. If you need to double crimp a standard crimp tube, there's no substitute for a pair of crimping pliers. It takes a little practice to get comfortable position-| j/j ing the crimping tube in the appropriate grooves, but the resulting connection is very sturdy. | WIRE CUTTERS | Save your scissors by using wire cutters to trim all your wires and link chains. It's safer to make a quick clip with wire cutters than to exert too much pressure with scissors blades. | MEMORY WIRE CUTTERS (OPTIONAL) | Memory wire is strong and its coils with-m stand stretching when it's repeatedly pulled on and off the wrist, neck or finger. Memoiy wire cutters easily snip through this heavy-duty wire, wire cutters tools and materials scissors

Any good-quality scissors will work, but my scissors of choice are Fiskars Softouch Micro-Tip. They have small, sharp points that fit easily in tight places. The built-in spring is activated by a light touch on the handgrips. The center locking mechanism and plastic sleeve make them portable and easy to stow.


I use size 12 beading needles in this book, but they come in lots of different sizes. Before you begin beading, verify that the beading thread passes easily through the eye of the needle and that the threaded needle passes easily through the smallest of the selected beads.

Bead Crimp Pliers India

chain-nose pliers

beading needles

chain-nose pliers glues and adhesives

Ideally, beaded projects are stronger if they're strung, knotted or wired together. However, glue can come in handy. It can serve as a reinforcer to make a beaded element doubly secure, and it can be a time-saver, taking the place of knots. In the few cases in this book where glue is required, I've used G-S Hypo Cement. | G - S HYPO CEMENT | This glue has a built-in applicator. To keep the applicator tip clear, a tiny wire threads in and out when the cap is screwed on or off. It's perfect for accurately inserting a drop of glue into tight spots or over small knots. | T A P E | Keep clear tape with your beading supplies. A small piece wrapped around the end of the stringing wire will help prevent accidents and keep partially strung strands secure.

felt bead mats felt bead mats

storage container

storage containers

Plastic fishing tackle boxes are ideal for bead storage. Look for boxes with tight locking lids and sealed dividers that won't let beads slide out from under them. I use several boxes to organize my beads and sort them by variety (seed beads in one, glass beads sorted by color in another, stones and metal beads in a third). If you use a variety of beads and want to keep them separated, purchase an inexpensive sectioned china dish from a bead store. As your collection grows, continue to add boxes. Adjustable-divider tackle boxes are perfect for storing metal findings, threads, cords and wires.

work surface storage container

Some people choose to purchase felted bead boards. I've found that stiff felt sheets sit better on my work surface and are easier to store. The texture helps prevent beads from rolling. Select a neutral gray or white sheet that doesn't hide the beads.

Despite the tremendous variety in finished beaded jewelry pieces, they all share the same basic techniques. Take a little time to familiarize yourself with these simple processes—especially how to shape head pins and how to secure clasps to the ends of beaded strands with crimp tubes. Once you're comfortable with the steps, you'll find assembling the actual projects very simple.

techniques opening and closing a jump ring

Jump rings are handy connectors. You can use them to extend a finished piece before adding a clasp, or to join a short length of chain to one end. Thread a jump ring through a charm before stringing it onto the strand, and it will allow the charm to face the right way. The trick is to open and close jump rings laterally so they keep their shape.

one • Hold one side of the jump ring between your thumb and index finger, just below the break in the metal. Grab the other side of the jump ring with your fingers or with chain-nose pliers and pull the wire toward you to open it. Be careful not to open the jump ring by pulling the wire ends away from each other, as horizontal action can distort the shape of the jump ring and weaken it.

two • Close the jump ring by sandwiching the wires between the pincers of the chain-nose pliers. Apply even pressure to bring the wire ends firmly back together.

linking eye pins

The straight end of an eye pin can be easily beaded and then bent to make a second loop. The loop ends can be connected to each other, to short lengths of chain or to clasps. Eye pins are very versatile, and incorporating them into your beaded jewelry gives you endless options. In fact, you can make an entire piece with linked beaded eye pins.

one • Hold the eye pin steady with your fingers and use round-nose pliers to open the eye pin loop.

two • Slide the eye pin loop onto the open loop. Use pliers to secure the opening closed again.

using crimp tubes

Use this double crimp technique when using no. 2 crimp tubes or larger. A single crimp will anchor the clasp to the strand but the second fold makes the connection even stronger. It also serves to narrow the crimp so it blends into the finished piece.

Use this double crimp technique when using no. 2 crimp tubes or larger. A single crimp will anchor the clasp to the strand but the second fold makes the connection even stronger. It also serves to narrow the crimp so it blends into the finished piece.

one • String one crimp tube followed by one part of the clasp onto the end of the strand. Position them about ^"-1" (1cm-3cm) from the end of the wire.

two • Fold the strand end back through the crimp tube. Pull the end to tighten the loop with the clasp.

three • Separate the wires inside the crimp tube so they rest against opposite sides of the tube (wires should not cross inside the tube). Clamp the crimping pliers over the outside of the tube, aligning the bumps in the tool with the center of the tube. Squeeze the crimping tool to flatten the tube's center and simultaneously trap the strings on the sides.

Precious Stones

Precious Stones

IN this little text-book the author has tried to combine the trade information which he has gained n  his  avocation,  the  study  of  precious  stones,  with  the  scientific  knowledge  bearing  thereon, which his vocation, the teaching of chemistry, has compelled him to master.

Get My Free Ebook

Post a comment