Monthly Archives: March 2012

All About Beads

Beading may be described to be as old as man himself. Some of the earliest beadwork found (which were made of shell and ivory) date back to the Stone Age and might have been used by early man to decorate their body or as necklaces, bracelets, or anklets. The Egyptians are thought to be the first people who crafted seed beads using faience seeds over 4,000 years ago. In support of this are the beadworks found by archeologists in the tomb of King Tut. In Japan, beadworks were discovered inside an 8th century palace.

Elsewhere in the world, such as in Nigeria, beaded items have been found that date back to the 8th to 11th centuries. There were also beads unearthed in Italy that came from the days of Marco Polo. The history of beadworks in North America can be attributed to the Native Americans who made use of beading to decorate sacred manuscripts.

Types of Beads Beading can be quite easy but crafting them to a work of art takes creativeness and patience. The following types should guide you on what to choose for a particular use.

Seed Beads are typically used in loom work and bead weaving. Most people start their beadworks using these since it can be inexpensive and offers an array of colors. However, you may face difficulty with them due to their small sizes, but it’s a great first step to experimentation. “H” (cut beads) has six sizes but is commonly as small as the former. The cut may be hexagonal or lopsided, while the shine reflected often comes from the flat surface.

Cut Beads come in similar sizes as the round standard seed beads although the most popular ones are: two-cut (have rounded bodies and cuts are at the top and bottom), three-cut look like gemstones and has surfaces on every side, the charlotte cuts are cut on one side and have rounded shapes.

“Bugles” have a tube shape, which may be smooth or hexagonal. “Roundels” have the shape of a donut and can be smooth or multi-faceted. Faceted beads have flat surfaces made by cutting or molding them to a standard shape. They come in a multitude of sizes and shapes. “Drops” are those with the shape of a pear and are holed either lengthwise or at the narrow end.

“Delicas” are cylinder shaped and perfectly tile together when beaded. The ‘”Roundeds” are the most widespread and you can always find something to choose from their extensive colors and varieties.

Beading is an enjoyable endeavor. Today, beading is used as part of embroidery, home decor or in the interest of jewelry making. The nature of beads makes them glamorous works of art, and is a profitable hobby as well.

Beads For Jewelry Making

Are you looking for the best accessory supplies? Saying that there are a number to choose from is an understatement. You might even be baffled by what you discover. To help you in your selection, which is actually a critical step as you begin crafting, here is a list of supplies you can utilize.

Seed beads are beads for jewelry making that have an even shape, and are smaller than a millimetre. Most of the time, you will see these items are round, and are commonly employed for off- loom weaving. These beads are also used for stringing which is simple in nature, as well as serving as spacers between other pieces in a design. Those of this kind that are large, are utilized in embellishing different fiber crafts such as crochet.

Chevron beads are beads for jewelry making that were initially produced for slave barter in the African continent by skilled artisans from Italy. They were mostly created out of successive layers of shaded glass, where the original core was molded like a star of five to fifteen points. Several coatings were allowed because it was up to the person how he or she wanted the result to appear. Right after all the sheets were covered, a lay- out was prepared depending on the desired thickness.

Millefiori beads are beads for jewelry making with patterns available in a lot of colors. These items are created out of a plain wound glass that has thin slices pressed into the surface of the material. This kind seems to be like mosaics where light can noticeably pass through the material.

Swarovski beads are beads for jewelry making that are highly prized by hobbyists nowadays. The bead contains a huge amount of lead and crystal. Lead cannot be found free in nature while crystal is rare even if it can be dug up out of the ground. These materials are very expensive because of the shades and flairs that are vintage in nature. The ones dubbed “bicones” are the most popular of the kind that are about 4mm to 6mm.

Ethnic beads are beads for jewelry making that were used in the past for trading. Most of these were imported from Ghana and Nigeria. Other items that include those of Tibetan Dzi heritage as well as Rudraksha of Indian origin, that were typically used for both the rosaries of Buddhism and Hinduism. Materials such as the Magamatam from Japan and Cinnabar from China also fall into this category.

So, are you in the mood to get started with beading and discover what your hands can fashion?

Beaded jewelry

Are you in the mood for wearing pieces of beaded jewelry? Well, the practice of using beads for self-adornment began at least 45,000 years ago, and guess what, the fabulous trend still radiates in any generation. From religious rites in South Africa to Hollywood stars, beaded jewelry can be a fashion statement of a generation, or signifies individual style.

Beaded jewelry comes in thousands of designs and creates varied looks for your. Whether you go for the classy glass beads designs or the funky fimo beads, whatever mood you want to create, beads make almost anything possible. There are several types of beaded jewelry available in the market that range in prices (from the very affordable wood beads to the expensive Pandora beads or Swarovski crystals) like bracelets, necklaces, anklets, and even earings

The history of people’s desire to wear beads began since time immemorial. At the tomb of King Tut (of Egypt) was found jewelry with beads made from semi-precious stones that adorned his slipper. This find was dates to be 4,000 years old. Moreover, a latest find from an archeological digging site includes the crude version of beaded jewelry (made from ancient shells) worn by a human ancestor, which is estimated to be 75,000 years old.

There are ready-made pieces of beaded jewelry as well as custom-made ones. Pandora jewelry allows bead-lovers to assemble their own jewelry like bracelets or necklaces to create a look distinct to you. A regular Pandora bracelet can cost around $1,800.

Moreover, there are several beads fabricated from glass, wood, seed beads, ceramic, semi-precious stones, pearls, pure gold, and diamonds. Jewelry crafted from beads also serves varying purposes. In indigenous cultures, beads are used in rituals. On the other hand, beads are also thrown on the street during occasions like a Mardi gras.

Making beaded jewelry While its fun to buy a ready-made jewelry, having your own creation is equally worthwhile. All you need is some creativity and patience. Eventually, it will grow to become a hobby. Aside from the beading necessities like beads, thread, and needle, the hobbyist can make use of other materials to come up with unique and beautiful beadworks.

Making jewelry out of beads also involves several techniques, which you may practice like stringing and wire-working. A few types of strings like nylon, metal wires, twine, and silk threads may be used. Wires are used for beaded jewelry items like necklaces, earrings, and hairpins, as well as to attach clasps. The advantage of wearing jewelry made of beads is the variety it offers. You can choose from the expensive combo of gold and silver, corals or pearls, to the inexpensive accessories fabricated from plastic and wood.

To enhance the effect of beads, different stitching and knotting techniques may be used as well. Whether wearing them for your own, or giving them as gifts, beaded jewelry items almost always enunciate self-expression and style.

Where to Buy Beaded Jewelry Gifts

Thinking of buying beaded jewelry gifts for yourself or for your teenage friends? Wondering where on the planet you can possibly find the high quality beaded jewelry gifts? Well, these beaded gift items are available in almost every jewelry and craft stores online and offline. They are sold at reasonable prices, and finding the right places can be easy with lots of them available out there.

However, if you want to stay trendy and obtain the beaded jewelry gifts easily and quickly, there’s nothing best you can do than to go directly online. Yes, you heard me right. Hundreds of jewelry and craft stores have already designed and developed their own sites on the web to allow their consumers to obtain their products in instant manner. The best thing to note about these online stores is that their services and products are available 24 hours a day. So you’re free to do your own search any time of the day or night. Aside from that, most of the online jewelry and craft stores which offer beaded jewelry gifts offer their products at the best deals. Some come discounted, while others are a bit pricey. The beaded gifts also come in different styles, colors, and designs and all of these differences are considered to suit everyone’s need.

If you are serious with your plan of buying beaded jewelry gifts on the web, start looking for the right items at the following portals:

SWCreations.net

SWCreations.net is owned personally by Stephanie White, a bead artist who designs some of the most precious beaded jewelries available online. Note, however, that the beaded jewelry gifts offered here are designed primarily for women. SWCreations.net boasts a wide selection of such items, and they are offered at discounted prices. There are also some pieces for men, but the items are limited in number. It is further important to note that all of the designs offered by SWCreations are handmade. They are crafted in the United States.

GemstoneGifts.com

Here is GemstoneGifts.com, another notable site to visit for beaded jewelry gifts and other supplies. This store is currently run and managed by a bead artist named Shirley Gordon and all of her pieces are handmade. The good thing about their products is that all are made with the finest materials, including birthstones, swarovski crystals, freshwater pearls, sterling silver, 14K gold, and other precious gemstones. The products are also designed with the customer’s desires in mind.

BeadWizardryDesigns.com

BeadWizardryDesigns.com is also out there to give you further selection of beaded jewelry gifts. You can find a wide selection of necklace, bracelets, ear rings, watches, and other jewelries made from high quality beads. Just like the above mentioned stores, the beaded jewelry gifts offered at this portal are all handcrafted. They are offered in set at reasonable costs.

There are a lot more jewelry and craft stores out there that can give you a wide selection of beaded jewelry items. But if you want to make a good start, the above mentioned sites are great enough for you to consider.

Beaded Curtains

Notably, beading is no longer confined to embroidery or jewelry making. The patience of those who have taken beadworks to a great extent conceived the idea of beaded curtains. If you want an exotic look for your living room or doorway, beaded curtains can be a chic alternative to an otherwise dull setup.

Acrylic Beaded Curtains use transparent acrylic beads that come in a variety of styles and shapes (flowers, raindrops, and Aurora Borealis). The great thing about this type is that they can be custom dyed to your choice of color. You must be warned, though, that acrylic beads can no longer be washed when the dye has dried out.

Acrylic beads perfectly replace glass beads for those who despise or are uncomfortable with the latter. They also take out the fear of breaking the glass beads but offer similar looks and styles.

Glass Beaded Curtains offer a trouble-free way to put an elegant look to any room. The glittering glass beads create the impression of raindrops reflecting light that soothes and calms anyone in the room. Some of the shapes of glass beads are raindrops, champagne bubbles, and animals, but there are others more.

This type of curtain must carefully adorn areas of a home that are less frequently used to avoid breaking the glass. Glass beaded curtains, when used as divider of a main doorway, might fracture when the glass beads brush on concrete barriers.

Wooden Beaded Curtains provide a natural touch for windows and doorways that don’t replicate the bamboo. They serve as home décor at the same time acts as an alternative to the usual draperies. The type of sound produced by the wooden beads depends on the kind of wood used for the beads.

You can make different wooden curtain patterns that suit your style. Though it takes time to create a beautiful design, your artwork will definitely stand proud wherever you desire to place it.

For Feng Shui believers, bamboo beaded curtains would be a good choice because they keep the flow of energy into a room just like wind chimes. They are also excellent home décors that offers a tropical mood. Bamboo can be dyed if you want to change its natural look or simply to add color, designs, and patterns. The light material of bamboo makes it ideal for doorways.

If used in children’s rooms, you can encourage your child to unleash his creativity so both of you can paint the bamboo. Bamboo beaded curtains are able to substitute fallen doors due to their tightly knit arrangement.

Additionally, Painted Beaded Curtains serve as artwork aside from their typical uses as curtains. You can find several images on these curtains among which, and the most popular, is the image of the Monalisa painting. Popular paintings also are tropical scenes that help set moods in your home.

Bead Supply

Are you in a hunt for accessorizing stash that will not disrupt your budget? In this article, you will read four wonderful suggestions that will put an end to your quest.

E- Bay is one the best bead supply sources available. Greatly trafficked in the information superhighway, people all over the world have been frequenting the website especially those who have the patience to wait for their orders to be delivered right in their doorsteps. Since the items first seen on the monitor are not tangible, it is a huge advantage if you are not an overly picky customer. Aside from those, if you are scouting for cheap materials, you are on the right place because you will not be disappointed to find pieces in a whole wide variety.

Flea Markets are one of the best bead supply sources available. When you head to these kinds, being open- minded is highly essential. As you go around and stumble upon items that you fancy, be willing to grab right immediately because it might not remain at a sale price for long. There are plenty of materials that are up for less such as vintage pieces that you can take apart from each other. Do not be afraid to venture into something that may seem awful but has a durable clasp because you can always play around.

Bargain Clubs are one of the best bead supply sources available. If you are not much familiar with this category, examples are the selections you can encounter in Yahoo Groups. With this novel approach, you can have the opportunity to make purchases that are individual- sized yet with bulk discounts. You can also all the more save when you acquire items in large quantities. Aside from the fact that you can save more money on the materials you need, the recommended location is conducive for getting inspirations on how to swap pieces.

Garage Shops are one of the best bead supply sources available. If you are acquainted with Lifestyle Channel’s Clean House, you can exactly recognize. On the show, second- hand items are being sold at extraordinary cut-rate amounts that will usually not go beyond a $100. Sounds like an attractive deal? It absolutely is because the materials may not be wholly fresh from your favorite stores but the condition is still excellent. There are even pieces that can be bought at more than fifty percent discount. Not to mention, you can have the luxury of asking the owner to lower even down the value.

If you cannot seemingly bridle yourself from instantly going out of the house, it only means to say that you are in the mood to discover fabulous stuff.

Bead Supplies

Can you ever imagine completing your own jewelry project without bead supplies? Well, that’s like saying that you want to eat but there is no food available. Definitely an irony which is the very reason why items for the execution of the craft are essential. However, materials you will be employing need not be first class unless you don’t mind how much you spend. But if you are conscious of your budget, you can still have an attractive beading piece even if your tools are second rate.

How to choose? If you are in a hunt for bead supplies, it is recommended that you do a lot of window shopping first so you can make assessments on which stores give the best deals. Based on the money that you have, purchase items that are considered the highest grade of their kind. The thing with materials that are not of top quality, you will end up in a repair shop more regularly than you expected. You can even pay more in the end for the damaged tool to be fixed.

Aside from looking into the various bead supplies, consider as well buying a container that will help you organize your supplies. Remember that the sizes of the beads can be very small and it would be a total mess in your space if you just hundreds of them on the table. There are plenty of boxes available that already have dividers inside, so all you have to do is assign which particular compartment is perfect for your items.

What are the sources? Bead supplies can be obtained almost anywhere such as the local stores near you. However, the concern about those items is that they are said not to be entirely first- class. Such materials are absolutely fine especially when you are still on your initial stage of the craft and you desire to venture into other interests because you are not totally committed yet. If you are serious in carrying out the art, for sure, you would only intend to employ tools that are not second rate.

Apart from the shops, you can go online to check retailers that sell various bead supplies. When you are connected to the information superhighway, the item can be all yours in just a click of a mouse. You can visit the websites of A Bead Store (www.abeadstore.com), Jewelry Supply (www.jewelrysupply.com) and Auntie’s Beads (www.auntiesbeads.com), among others, so you can narrow down your search.

With these practical information, you are now equipped to scout for bead supplies.

Bead Spinner: The Efficient Bead Stringing Tool

Bead stringing is one special task that beaders learn to do well. However, for amateur bead artists, the task can be a bit daunting especially if hundreds of beads need to be strung together for just a single piece of jewelry or art. It may take hours for them to finish a single piece and they can only use their fingertips just to slide beads onto the thread. What if you could finish a single beaded item within 5 minutes and you want to string more than a hundred beads? That’s pretty tough. But, here’s the good news, one excellent tool for bead stringing was been developed -– the Bead Spinner.

The bead spinner was designed and developed to help bead artists string their beads in just a matter of seconds without making their time and selves exhausted. The bead spinner is a tool that allows you to spindle beads without having to pick them one by one just for them to be slid down to the thread. With the bead spinner, the beads you need to string will just leap onto the line with an excellent speed.

The Structure

The bead spinner may come in two parts. First, it may appear with stand and a bowl, which spins on the spindle when triggered. Second, the bead spinner may appear with one piece that spins on its top. They may come in varying sizes and shapes, but all of them are designed for one goal – to make your beading task easier and quicker.

How to Use the Bead Spinner

The bead spinner is easy to use and operate. There’s no need for electricity, special skills, or batteries. All you have to do is to prepare a needle, a thread, and of course, your beads. Once everything is prepared, put the seed beads into the bowl and insert the needle. To make the task lighter and quicker, try to hold your needle ready with its tip curved. The curve tip of the needle should be the part inserted into the bowl. If done, spin the spindle to allow the beads to slide from the tip of the needle into the thread. But, this will only be possible if the needle is placed close to the side of the beads in motion.

Note that you can do the task successfully if you manage to hold the needle at an angle that assists the beads to slide directly into the line. This trick can be a bit difficult at first, but once you start and manage to hold the needle at the right angle, the beads will feed as fast as a blink of an eye. It is this little trick actually that makes your beading project quick and easy.

With the efficiency that the bead spinner provides, it’s no wonder that bead artists who specialize in bead crochet, French flower beading, and bead knitting are now using the bead spinner in almost all of their bead crafts.

Buying Beads at the Right Bead Shop

Do you enjoy jewelry making or bead knitting? If yes, the best part is to start with finding and collecting beads from the right bead shop. What’s nice to know is that finding the right bead shop these days is easy. You can take just a few steps to your local jewelry or craft store, or you can go online. If you prefer to do the latter, just make sure that you are willing to spend time searching for the best bead shop.

Beads are offered at bead shops both online and offline in handfuls. They come in almost all shapes, sizes, and colors and these variations provide people with a wide selection of beads for them to choose from. The beads offered at bead shops also differ according to the materials used. Some are crafted from pricey gemstones, while others are made of bone, glass, metal, plastic, wood, and even paper. Corals and shells are but another popular material used for beading, as well as seeds and other trivial objects. These materials can also be found at the bead stores you might be considering to allow you to enjoy the countless possibilities.

Aside from beads, it is also typical for the bead shops to feature other items necessary for beading. These items may include watch faces, findings, clasps, and other beading accessories. If it’s your lucky day, you can catch certain beading lessons offered by the bead shop itself. The lessons are provided to teach beading amateurs to rapidly emerging art of bead crafting.

With lots of options available, it is important to know exactly what items you particularly need. Not all beads might be perfect for you, so you need to sort through the selections available, and this is not an easy task, as you may realize. So to make everything easy, hassle-free and quick for you, it would be best if you’ll check your supplies out to identify what you lack. Make a list of those that you need or want before taking your steps to a reliable bead shop. If in case you are looking for a particular bead, bringing a sample to the bead shop you are considering could be one of the best moves to consider. That will make your task a bit lighter as with the sample in hand, finding the right bead can be done easily and quickly. Oops! Don’t just pick the beads without checking them. Some might have defects, so be careful.

Finally, when buying beads at a bead shop, don’t be shy or hesitate to ask for special sales or discounts. It’s always good to ask for it for how will you get good deals if you won’t ask about it. A meticulous and careful consumer always does it, especially when the situation calls for it.

Bead patterns

Beads are timeless pieces whether as jewelry, embroidery, or for decorative purposes on bags, belts, slippers, almost anything. The wonderful thing about this 45,000-year-old craft is that beginners can experiment with any design, using their own creativity and the following bead patterns. You can customize these beads patterns according to the style you want to emphasize or your choice of beads. Here are some bead patterns that you can work on during your free time.

Glass Bead Jewelry

This is a pretty funky piece that you can put on with your casual wear, and very easy to make. You will need: assorted glass beads, Beadalon bead stringing wire, clasp set, crimp beads or tubes, needle-nose pliers, and wire cutters.

Begin by cutting the bead stringing wire that is 6 inches longer than the intended length of the jewelry. Thread on a crimp bead and one piece of the clasp set. Bend the tip of the wire about two inches long so that it goes back through the crimp bead, and pull it close to against the clasp. Flatten the crimp bead next to the clasp using the needle-nose pliers so as to prevent it from sliding out of its place. Next, thread all your glass beads into the wire making sure that the first few beads are threaded over both thickness of the wire.

String the other crimp bead into the wire as well as the next half of the clasp, then slide the wire back to the crimp bead and few beads that follow. To finish this project, pull the wire so that the beads are snug up to each other and flatten the crimp bead. Cut the wire at the closest of the beads as possible.

Lariat Necklace

Well, how did you find that project? Once you’ll grow to love beading, it might turn to be one of your most inexpensive and creative hobbies and soon you can work on your own design. This Lariat Necklace pattern is great for casual or semi-casual wear.

You will need: glass beads of assorted colors, a 36″ chain (sterling silver or gold-plated would do), headpins or eyepins, split ring, needle-nose pliers, and wire cutters. Assemble several beaded pendants first: thread some beads on the eyepin or headpin and keep around 1/3″ of the wire then cut off any excess wire. Grip the wire extending over the beads and bend in a direction opposite to you. Next, grip the wire tip and bend it to make a loop. Remember to close the loop securely to the beads. You can opt to attach split rings prior to completely closing the loop.

For the grand finale, attach the beaded pendants to the ends of the chain. Then completely close the loops. Now, you’re ready to wear your Lariat Necklace.

There are hundreds of online bead patterns, however, you might find some bead patterns to be a bit hard to do. Don’t worry, just practice on the simpler bead patterns and you’ll get the heck of it eventually. Have fun!