The most basic type of beading, bead stringing can be learned in a day, but has endless variations.
crimping pliers - It has two different notches for crimping. They must both be used if you want the crimp to hold (it's a two step operation).
wire cutters - sometimes called "nippers"
chainnose pliers (optional) - Rounded on the outside, but flat on the inside where they come together. Good for making right angles when working with wire or pulling on stubborn beading wire when bead stringing.
round nose pliers (optional) - Tapered tips are round all the way around. Good for making loops when working with wire or pulling beading wire when stringing.
beading wire - There are several different types. Experiment to find out which you like best. My favorite is "Soft Flex".
beads, 2 crimp beads, clasp
(click on images to enlarge)
1. Cut a piece of beading wire that is at least six inches longer than you want the final necklace or bracelet to be.
2. Arrange the beads on the wire in the order you want.
3. Pass the wire through the crimp bead, then one side of the clasp, then back through the crimp bead. Let 1-2 inches stick out.
4. If you don't like to see the bare wire when you attach the clasp, then make a loop of beads to hold on the clasp like I did here. I used size 11 seed beads to cover the wire.
5. Use the notch in the crimping tool that is closer to the hinge to "crimp" the bead. It will make a dent in the crimp bead, getting it ready for the next step. If you stop here the wire will pull out. The dent can be seen in the photo.
6. Now, rotate the crimp bead 90 degrees and crimp a second time using the notch in the tool closest to the tip. This is the move that secures the crimp bead and prevents the wire from pulling out. It squashes it into a neat package.
If you don't like the way crimp beads look you can hide them with a Crimp Bead Cover or a bead large enough to slide over the crimp.
7. Be sure to slide the "tail" of the wire through several beads before you cut the excess away. If you trim next to the crimp bead, it is liable to pull out.
The finished necklace.
(click to enlarge image)
8. Repeat on the opposite side to attach the other half of the clasp. Be sure the beads are pushed up next to each other before you crimp the second side or you will have spaces in between. I actually hold the necklace up so that the beads all slide to the bottom, leaving no spaces.
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