How to Bead

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Your new beading skills can give you a sense of accomplishment after you make a necklace just like the expensive one you saw in the store. Friends will be asking you to make one for them, and you might even find you have the knack needed to start a small side-business as a bead queen. Set aside a little time to learn the craft and then start beading.

Things You'll Need

  • Beads
  • Thread
  • Pliers
  • Bead tips
  • Big-eye needles
  • Clasps
  • Spacers
  • Glue
  • Observe possible projects around you. Peruse magazines devoted to beading, such as "Bead & Button," or visit jewelry stores to see what is being produced commercially. Keep a scrapbook handy so you can collect pictures and sketches of possible beading designs.

  • Buy supplies at a beading specialty shop or a craft store. You need beads, thread, glue, pliers, bead tips, spacers, needles and clasps to get started.

  • Organize your bead storage container. A special bead box can be purchased or use a make-up organizer, hardware storage container, or even egg cartons. You'll find you spend a lot of time playing and organizing your beads, so consider splurging on the more expensive organizer.

  • Ask a friend who beads to teach you the basics or find a class. Most bead stores offer beginning classes and some community colleges also have classes. For do-it-yourselfers, grab a how-to manual from the library or check out some online instructional sites.

  • Make your first piece. Get out your supplies, find a comfortable location to work, and get started. If you don't like the way the finished product looks, disassemble the beads and start over. Once you have your masterpiece finished, start planning your second project.

Tips & Warnings

  • Don't be dazzled by all the beads available or you'll soon go broke. Instead, decide on one project and just buy the beads you need. Later, you'll have lots of beads to play with.
  • You'll need additional supplies as you become more skilled at beading. Check with the local beading supply store and they'll be happy to sell you everything you need.
  • Be careful with you bead box. If you drop it, you'll have to spend the entire afternoon reorganizing beads. Not fun!

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