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Becky's Bead Blog

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2/1/2012

Wow, I can't believe we are into February already. Today I wanted to share a great product with you, Beading Wire.

I use Accu-flex's Beading Wire which is available from Beadin' Mon!. I usually keep two colors in my tool box, pearl for lighter color projects and classic which looks like steel color for darker projects. Try to coordinate your color of wire to the color of your beads. Usually you don't want the wire to show between your beads, unless of course that is part of your design.

Accu-flex is available in 4 different strand counts; 7, 19, 21 and 49. Each number refers to the number of strands (or tiny cables) that make up the wire. The smaller the number the stiffer the wire. The higher numbered strands are also coated with clear nylon. This coating helps protect the wire from wear and from tarnishing.

Another great feature about beading wire is there is no need for a needle. You simply use the end of wire to pick up your beads.

I have only used 49 strand wire, so I can't tell you from experience what the differences are. I mostly make necklaces and bracelets with smaller beads so weight has never been an issue. Wire with 49 count is the softest drape, which means it is more pliable and will lay nicely around your wrist or neck.

So, to stock your tool box stop by Beadin' Mon! to pick up your beading wire and any beads that may catch your eye. Have a great Thursday and Happy Beading. See you Friday.



Beading Wire



1/30/2012

I hope you all had a great first day to the week. Today I thought I would show you a tool.

The Crimping tool.

This is actually one of the first tools that I ever bought for jewelry making. At first I had no idea how to use it, luckily someone showed me along the way. So here are the steps. First you have to have your beading wire go through the crimp bead, then a jump ring and then back through the crimp bead.

Crimp Tool Step 1 Step 2
Crimp Tool Step 1 Step 2
  Insert Crimp bead into back cradle of jaw. Turn kidney bean shape onto its side (vertical) and place into front cradle of jaws.
  Before Gently squeezing the jaws closed make sure there is a wire on each half of the kidney bean shape. Gently squeeze, folding the kidney bean in half.


That's it and your done. But, unfortunately I still have problems with this when I get to step 2. Instead of my crimp bead being nicely folded in half twice. My step 2 sometimes comes out deformed. BUT, we do have an easy way to bypass this problem. There are special crimp beads that are simple to use called twist crimps. You slip them onto the wire as before, but instead of using the crimping tool, you simply squeeze it tightly with jewelry pliers. These are my favorite, because they are so easy and available at Beadin' Mon!

1/25/2012   •  Bead Mat

Welcome back. Since I don't know what experience everyone has I have decided to start at the beginning.

Today I wanted to start with the very first thing that I do when I want to work on my projects. That is to prepare your work area with our very first tool. Well, not sure you would actually call it a tool, but it certainly is helpful, at least I think so. This tool is your bead mat.

I like to think of my bead mat is my active work zone. I put all my beads and needed supplies right on the mat, that way I'm all in one spot. I sometimes tend to spread out, and my bead mat keeps me confined and organized.

Another great thing about the mat is it keeps all your beads from rolling around and off the table. Nothing like spending your precious bead time looking for the crystals that rolled off the table. I sometimes use the mat to layout my pattern for my project.

One more thought about the mat and I'll leave you to your creations. I have two mats in my tool box. I have a light colored one that I use for darker projects (this is the one I use the most). And I also have a dark colored one that I use for my projects that contain lighter colored elements. The contrast of the mat to supplies is easy on the eyes, therefore letting your work longer.

If your in need of a bead mat stop by Beadin' Mon! and pick one up. They are inexpensive and a great tool to use.



Bead Mat

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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