Monthly Archives: April 2012

Handmade Beads

Do you want to make your own beaded accessories? If you find handmaking beads for jewelry relaxing in your free time, then it makes sense to develop the required ability. World- renowned artist Daniel Lopacki is a great example of a person who went out of his way to discover and grow, which led him to where he is right now.

Below is a list of some techniques for creating handmade beads which Daniel Lopacki compiled in his 25 years in the industry.

Selection

The first step in handmade bead jewelry is when you choose the materials you are going to use for your design. Lopacki suggests opting for stones that do not bear any cracks because when you begin your to shape your beads, it will be frustrating to work with flawed items. Plus there’s the risk they will shatter into bits ending up in disappointment for you. Look for internal blemishes in transparent materials, and a minor defect in lucent gems can be distinguished by the shape.

Cutting

If the material you have bought for your handmade bead jewelry is really huge, you can always slice it up into different sizes. Lapocki does this by facing the coarse side that will generate the biggest blob blank. As a trick, he often leaves some areas with ordinary depressions since it allows for the thickest gem possible.

Drilling

In this method for handmade bead jewelry, Lapocki determines the middle of each piece of raw material before a hole is created. Usually, the result will allow for the maximum dimension of the finished stone.  This is particularly important when the item costs two hundred dollars per gram. Use dial calipers to work out the rough dimensions of the bead, then halve this to find the mid point.  Do this in two directions, vertical and horizontal, Draw lines from midpoint to midpoint in each direction, and the point where they cross is the centre.

So, are you ready to create your own handmade beads for your next jewelry project?

Halloween Beads

Halloween is a popular occasion celebrated by millions of people all over the world. Both children and adults celebrate it once a year and many spend a great deal of time preparing for it, not just with costumes, but for everything associated with it.

Being so popular, it’s no surprise to find people crafting Halloween beads for the public to use. They create different designs and styles of Halloween beads before, during and even after Halloween. The beads are designed for several good purposes, either for gifts or just for keeps, and just like other beading items, they come in different colors, sizes, shapes, and designs. The designs, however, are all based on what is relevant to the occasion. It is typical for the Halloween beads to feature images of pumpkins, bats, spider webs, spiders, ghosts, bones, or skulls.

The question now is where can you possibly find Halloween beads that are crafted from high quality materials? Well, finding high quality Halloween beads is a not a big problem. Many jewelry and craft outlets have a great selection of beads appropriate for Halloween. These beads are offered at varying prices, however, so visiting the sites in person to shop around is a good idea.

If you want to know exactly where a number of Halloween beads can be found, then consider the following sites:

CraftsNScraps.com

CraftsNScraps.com is a website which features a number of well-designed and well-crafted beading materials for Halloween. The designs are generally created for trick and treaters of all genders and ages. The beads are made from glass, polymer and acrylic materials. The ones made from glass are crafted with lampwork designs. It is also interesting to know that CraftsNScraps.com offers Halloween beads that can be customized to suit your own individual design.

JuJeeBeads.com

JuJeeBeads.com currently features a gallery filled with beads of Halloween designs. The Halloween beads highlighted at this site are all well-crafted and are created from quality materials, making each piece precious and priceless. The items are offered in assorted sets, but there are also others that are offered by design. They also come in different colors and shapes, and each varies in price.

ShipwreckBeads.com

ShipWreckBeads.com is another website worth visiting for Halloween beads. At this site, you can find jewelry and craft beads that are designed for Halloween and other special holidays, like Christmas, New Year, St. Patrick, and Hanukkah. In their Halloween line, you can find around 60 items available for purchase. And, perhaps the nice thing to know about this site is that they offer all their items at a low price.

To find out more about the above mentioned bead stores and their services and products, just visit them online.

Gold Beads

For many centuries gold has been considered a treasure, especially when people colonised a land far from home. Stories of the Pirates and Spaniards on the Caribbean Ocean make it clear how highly gold was prized.

Taking Care of Gold Beads

If you have any gold beads stashed away in your cabinet, take them out and check for stains. If you see any, it means you need to do something to restore them to their natural beauty. If you have beads that come in a variety of colors and styles, the procedure for each is the same.  After all, they’re all created from the same mineral. If you carefully follow the guidelines below, the original luster of your items will be regained in less than hour.

* There are several products available on the market that are designed to clean gold beads. However, don’t need to buy a bottle because mild detergent and tap water is enough to remove stains on your necklace, earrings or bracelet. A brush is essential, especially when you are washing a delicate filigree stone. There may be times when the beads should be soaked for about a minute in a solution consisting of six parts water and one part ammonia.

* Polishing with a cloth is also a huge help in preserving the glitter of gold beads. Not only does fabric help eliminate the smudges, it also makes your jewelry appear like  new.

* It’s important to avoid getting your jewelry in contact with household chemicals like chlorine because this substance can actually fade, or worse, damage the gems mounted on the item.

* Appropriately storing your gold beads is also essential for protection. When you place them inside a box, prevent the pieces from rubbing against each other to avoid scratches. It’s a good idea to make small partitions that separate each item from another. You can also use individual pouches.

So, are you prepared to delve into your drawer and begin the necessary steps to bring back the glitter in your gold beads?

Glass Pony Beads

No, they’re not hairy beads! Pony beads are made of either plastic or glass. Pony beads have smooth surfaces, are slightly oval in shape, generally bigger than seed beads and smaller than crow beads. Typical sizes for pony beads are 5mm, 6mm, and 9mm.

Immersed in various finishes, these beads come in many different colors in transparent, opaque, marbled, or Aurora Borealis finish. The beads, which may also come in a heart-shape available in its plastic version, are great for simple single strands such as bracelets and necklaces.

To give an idea of the possible designs you can make from glass pony beads, this project creates a 20″ necklace using glass pony beads. The following materials are needed to make this necklace: 2 ounces of glass pony beads (choose between two and nine colors), 2 sterling silver crimps, 1 sterling lobster clasp, 1 sterling jumpring, 22 inches of C-Flex Beading Wire, a pair of pliers, a crimper tool, and a pair of wire cutters.

The first step is to thread the first crimp into one end of the beading wire, then string the clasp on after that. Hold the other end of the wire and slip it back through the crimp to form a loop that secures the clasp. Snug the loop close to the clasp so that there is about ¾” tail of beading wire left, making sure it’s not larger than the crimp. Using the crimping tool, fold the crimp so that the two strands of wire are flattened.

String one bead into the beading wire. Pull the ¾” tail to make it longer to be able to string all the beads together. Simply use the pliers if the beading wire is hard to pull out. Next, cut off the tail so as to secure it on the first bead. The glass pony beads that would follow should snugly fit against the first bead. Continue stringing the beads onto the beading wire until the length is 19 ½”. Experiment with color patterns or simply string any color variation onto the wire to suit your style.

After all the desired beads are stringed on the wire, string the second half of the sterling crimp then the jumpring on, and bend the beading wire back into the crimp to form a loop so that the jumpring is secured in it. Same with the procedure on the other clasp, give a little space from the last bead and insert the tail of the wire into it. The pliers will help you grip the wire better. Next, slowly snug the crimp and the last beads to the rest of the beads while the end loop should not be small enough so that part of the jumpring is still loose. Lastly, use the crimper to flatten the crimp tightly to the wire then cut the tail of the wire so that it will be hidden inside the beads.

This project should give you an idea of how glass pony beads will look when made into a piece of jewelry. You can also add a pendant or other beads to give a variation to the glass pony beads.

Glass Beads

Want to give jewelry as gifts but can’t afford precious stones? You’ve found the right article to give you an idea of glamorous, elegant gifts which fit your budget. Glass beads come in a kaleidoscope of colors, sizes, and shapes that will definitely earn the adoration of your loved one. Aside from gifts, glass beads have been used as currency, works of art, and even status symbols.

These trinkets have been worn by women, created and traded since the earliest of civilizations, from Egyptians, Romans, the Indians, and Vikings. Their great variety makes them suitable for any occasion and purpose. You can name any color on the spectrum and you’ll find it in a glass bead design.

The most popular origin of glass beads is the Czech Republic. Beading using glass is an age-old cottage industry and the Czechs have perfected making them by employing premium glass materials. You can select from several types of Czech beads like Bicone beads, Fire-polished beads, Druk Beads, Cathedral beads, Flat backs, Montees, pressed glass with Aurora Borealis finish, Fancy Finish pressed glass, Natures Splendor pressed glass, opaque pressed glass, transparent pressed glass, and many more.

You’ll be hard-pressed to choose from the enormous range of styles and colors you can find online. Well, one tip in selecting or creating your own design is to follow what color complements what, or simply select one color. Then unleash your creativity by combining different shapes or go for a mono-shaped piece. Some of the best designs add more soul to the glass bead jewelry. You can go as far as adding feathers for an ethnic look, mix rounded and cubed beads, big and small, simple to extravagant, etc.

Understanding glass beads

Dichroic glass is handmade by fusing glass layers on top of one another to provide dramatic effects of form and colors. Oftentimes, a layer of black or crystal clear glass is fused over a dichroic glass or the other way around to achieve an effect.

East India Glass beads are likewise handmade by employing the lampworking process. These types of beads can be very inexpensive, however, their durability may not be as good since Indian lamp-workers do not give much attention to the process called annealing. But if it’s the design you want, lampwork beads are great value.

Chinese lampwork glass beads as well as pendants are very chic. Although some styles have been copied from American designs, you can find the differences in durability, craftsmanship, and artistry in the details. There is also a notable difference in prices since Chinese lampwork beads are a lot more inexpensive compared with their American counterparts.

Czech Crystal Drops have the shape of teardrops made of leaded glass crystal. There’s a horizontal holes drilled at the narrow end of the glass bead. Austrian crystal beads are quite dazzling and you can find them cut perfectly. They are more brilliant compared to the Czech fire polish bead (which offers quite similar effects), and colors are more vibrant with sharper edges. Clear goes for “crystal” while “jet” is for black. An Aurora Borealis finish provides multiple color-shine to a bead.

Gemstone beads

For a lovely present without having to spend a fortune, gemstone beads can be used in place of precious stones. Trust your instincts, your loved ones will definitely love them. – Apart from serving as ornaments and jewelry, the earliest uses of gemstone beads included being used as currency, or because of their metaphysical characteristics.

The advantages of using gemstones in jewelry is their colors never wear out and are created by Nature herself.  The durability of gemstone beads that will certainly ensure they last a long time. Gemstone beads found thousands of years ago in many places around the globe are still in perfect shape. The many kinds of gemstones will allow you to choose your favorite color and incorporate them in a design.

Where art thou my gemstone?

Different traditions all over the world have acknowledged the metaphysical properties of gemstones and crafted them as jewelry to provide effects on the physical, spiritual, and even on financial aspects of life . Here we’ve listed popular gemstones used as beads for jewelry, their origin, composition, and metaphysical properties.

Aventurine is said to be a good luck stone, especially in the area of finance. The stone is believed to stimulate creativity, perceptiveness and intelligence. For ages, the stone was used to provide a sense of well-being.

Agate comes in a variety of colors and even stripes. Agate pebbles are worn to promote overall protection and healing. The stone is also believed to enhance courage, confidence in oneself, energy, and promote longevity. This is also the stone for gardeners.

Amber is believed to have healing properties, attractiveness, energy, and protects from negativity.

Amethyst has a dark purple color and is believed to increase vivid dreams, promote calmness, spirituality and serenity, and relieve depression. It helps with stress and forms of addiction.

Appatite gemstone beads have a shiny finish and are sought by people who wish to relieve stuttering or hypertension. It also assists with grief and feelings of guilt.

Aquamarine is the birthstone for March. Aquamarine gemstone beads help improve sight, attain a sharper mind, and soothe troubled emotions.

Emerald’s color is green and it is a mind stone. People wear emerald gemstone beads to help achieve better memory and enhance nimble thinking to come up with the right decisions.

Garnet helps balance the natural energy of a person. It is known as the stone that protects, increases security and confidence.

Hematite gemstone beads are grinding stones that help calm, reduce stress, soothe, and lower blood pressure.

Jade is a stone for wisdom, humility, generosity, mercy, peace, and harmony. Wearing jade as jewelry helps protect a person and brings luck. You can place some jade underneath your pillow for invigorating dreams.

Gemstone beads make good fashion jewelry. You can wear them on ordinary days or special occasions, or mix and match them with your clothes. Experience their power and beauty for yourself.

Fossilized Coral Beads

Got a necklace or a bracelet with fossilized coral beads? Wondering how the stones are made or where they come from? You may be thinking of collecting fossilized coral beads for your own jewelry project.

Well, beads made of fossilized corals have been around for a number of years now. More than a thousand people have already used the stone in their own beading projects, thus it’s no surprise to find a wide selection of these items out there on the market these days.

Fossilized coral beads are generally known by the name Indonesian Jasper or Indonesian Coral. They are said to be fossil remnants of coral reefs that are silicate in nature. It is named Jasper as Jasper itself is silicate. Unlike the other stones on earth, fossilized coral beads are noted for their unique pattern that show off little starbursts.  There are believed to be left from the corals itself and make its millefiori-esque texture possible.

Speaking of patterns, the fossilized coral beads look like small flowers trapped inside a stone. They come in different shapes and sizes, depending on the cuts and slices considered. They also come in varying colors, with some fossilized coral beads boasting reddish hues, or a combination of brown, gray, white, black, and yellow. It is worth knowing that these different shades or colors of the fossilized coral beads are made possible by the degree of their exposure to the ground water where they are mined. The colors are also determined by the iron content and other minerals present in the water where the fossilized corals are crafted. Well, these beads can now be found in almost every area in the world, with most samples mined in the United States, Thailand, China, and other countries in Asia, Australia, Africa, Europe, and the Americas.

Now, the question is where can you possibly find fossilized coral beads?

Fossilized coral beads, as implied earlier, have been made available in the market for people to buy. They are now available in almost every specialized craft and jewelry store, so finding the right beads can be easy and quick. You can also find them in your local neighborhood jewelry stores, or online. The best thing about online stores is they are available 24 hours, seven days a week. You can access the sites from the comfort of your own home. That makes your search a lot easier, obviously. However, with lots of fossilized coral beads available out there, you need to spend enough effort and time searching for the right material.

Fashion Bead Earrings

Overview

Open the pages of any stylish magazine and you will not fail to find a wide display of fashionable bead earrings. As you become familiar with this gorgeous fashion accessory, you will learn there are plenty of designs you can choose. You can even discover how to create your very own meaning, an integration of your personality into a single piece.

Many of the fashion bead earrings nowadays consist of a small bar at the tip while there are also those that are connected with a thin chain on the end. If you are interested in beginning your own project, you can put together any sort of charms and trinkets you desire. When you go shopping for supplies, you will never run out ideas because there are so many stores selling materials catering to your needs. You can even rummage through your drawers and find stuff that you are no longer be using, and recycle them as ornamentation.

Suggestions

If you are serious about creating your own fashion bead earrings, the easiest to use are said to be threads that have a 3mm ball on the tip. This is because charms and trinkets can be slid into place within a matter of minutes. If you are thetype of person who always works on complementing a total wardrobe, you can still do that with your bead earrings. You can change the stones in order to match the color of your blouse, pants, belt, shoes, or bag. However, this advice is only feasible for individuals who have the luxury of time!

Another thing you should consider when crafting fashion bead earrings is to keep your leftovers. These are the items you didn’t use in your current piece, but in the future, may be very helpful. To make things easy for yourself, prepare a box that has several dividers. Remember, you are dealing with very small elements, throwing everything in one big container would result in a huge mess.

Door Beads as a Home Furnishing Tool

Door beads are rapidly gaining popularity in the home interior and decorating industry. Homes and offices are using them to add a certain effect to their environment, and it is so nice to know that since the first inception of door beads, they have already satisfied homeowners and even interior designers with the brilliance and elegance they give to a particular setting. It is for this reason door beads remain as one of the hottest items on the market.

Door beads first came out as a home furnishing tool in the 60s. They continue to attract consumers even today. They are becoming more and more popular with the growth of the feng shui decorating concept, which originates from China and was brought to other areas in the world by the Chinese merchants and travelers.

However, with the massive production of door beads these days, finding the right product can be a bit daunting. As you may know, door beads now come in all styles and designs. They vary according to shape, size, and even color. They even vary according to price and, of course, materials used. Because of this, proper and careful selection is highly recommended.

Want to know what types of door beads are available for sale nowadays? If so, then consider the following:

Wooden

Wooden door beads are one of the best known door bead materials in the industry. They are preferred by most homeowners as they are stronger and tougher than bamboo, one of its main competitors. Wooden door beads are also easy to manipulate, and come in natural colors, but can be painted to your desired shade.

Bamboo –

Bamboo door beads are the most popular type of door beads available on the market. Specifically, they are lightweight, and add an audible element, which is the whooshing sound they produce when touched or blown. They can also be colored in just a matter of minutes.

Glass

Door beads also come in glass. However, it is important to note that the glass beads used on a doorway or entranceway are the most expensive type available. The beads are typically made from true glass and just like the bamboo option, they add an audible dimension. They are more susceptible to damage or breakage, however, so care is required when passing through the beads. Since they are made of glass, glass door beads scatter and reflect light across your room for a beautiful effect.

Door beads may also come in PVC or acrylic materials. With these, it’s be best if you look at the right product based on your own preference, as well as on your budget. Also consider your own style and the effect the door beads of your choice may provide. And, whatever you may get, just be happy with it.

Finding Discount Beads

When people hear the word “beads”, they often think of something that is pricey. They commonly associate it with authentic jewelry beads that are really precious and priceless. But, in today’s highly competitive world, finding beads that cost less isn’t impossible. Fact is, they are now available in almost all jewelry and craft stores. So if you are searching for the right beads for your own jewelry or art project, then don’t lose hope. Discount beads are out there.

There is a wide range and selection of discount beads available. The beads offered are equally as lovely and impressive as the pricey ones. However, the price of these discount beads varies depending on who is selling them and where they are sold. The quality and features of the beads also affect the price. Some come with less discounts, while others can be considered as really cheap beads. In addition, not all jewelry and craft stores carry these items, and this is what makes your search a bit daunting.

So to find the right discount beads, you need to exert some time and effort searching for the right places to go. The good news is that there are a lot of ways you can to find the right places. You can start searching offline through the craft and jewelry outlets in your neighborhood. You can ask your friends or someone you know about where you can find discount beads. You can also search newspapers or magazines for ads. The bigger jewelry and bead stores will be advertising their products offline. This is even possible even for the small ones.

If you want to follow today’s most popular method of finding discount beads, then go online. Several sites are operating on the net these days which offer you a wide selection of discount beads. The best thing about searching online is that you can it from the comfort of your own home. There’s no need for driving to all of your local jewelry and craft stores to wait and stand in line just to get the right beads. The transaction can be done in just a matter of clicks. However, when searching for discount beads online, remember to read and understand any purchase or ordering policies maintained by the site you are considering with. Also look for certain guarantees, and make sure the company you are considering is reliable and can be trusted. You will also be making your payment according to their requirements.

Once you’ve found the right store, focus on the features and quality of the discount beads they stock. Note that just like the rest of the beads available, they differ significantly in their color, shape, size, and texture. So when making your choice, pick up the ones you think are best for you. Although they are low in price, discount beads can definitely help you express yourself artistically.