One of the question often asked about making necklaces, other then techniques, is about the correct length for various styles. This image shows the standard length you will need to adjust to ensure that it will fit the wearer perfectly.
|Guidelines for necklace lengths|
Your work surface can vary based on personal preferences, portable and cost. Here are some that Maria uses; bead on it boards have a contained surface and lap trays can allow you to bead as a passenger on road trips. But Maria's personal favourite is Chinet plates. They contain the beads, are inexpensive and portable (dessert-size will fit into a medium ziploc).
|Bead on it Board in use|
|Lap tray is use|
|Multiple Chinet plates in use|
Tools you will need for basic beadweaving are thread trimmers and various size needles.
Beading threads are generally nylon based. Picture below are the various threads including nymo, C-lon, One G, and Fireline.
|various beading threads|
|Thread colour matters|
Getting the needle onto the thread can be a challenge due to the very small eye of fine beading needles. Try needling the thread. Hold the thread between finger and thumb with just a small end showing. Move the needle onto the thread. If you still have trouble flip the needle as the eye of the needle is punch and one side is smoother than the other.
|Needling the thread|
Create a slipknot 8-10 inches from the end of your new thread. Slip it onto the old thread. Tighten and slide down on the old thread to the work. Tie the ends with a surgeon's knot (a square knot with an extra twist).
|Adding new thread|
You will need to secure the ends into the work using circle knots.
Circle around the woven thread between beads, pull end thru the small loop created and pull tight. Repeat a few times for each end.
|Toggle work well for bracelets|
|Tubular clasp are available in different sizes for wider designs.|
|Ball & Socket closures are very secure|
|Auditioning pearls & crystals for a bridal necklace|
|Auditoning various clay and Tagua nut beads for two different styles|
For a more finished look you can use crimp covers over the crimps which hides the crimp within a hollow bead. Another great finishing component is a wire guard. It will protect the wire as it goes thru the finding.
|Detail of crimp covers and wire guard|
|Classic dangles added to a larger crystal to make different earring styles|
Watch for the highlights of Maria's other presentation "Simply Beadweaving" on the weekend.