The Beads’ Knees

20 Nov

This week, in my second blog about the popular hobby of beading, we will discuss where to learn beading and important tools and materials used. It’s just about Christmas time, and if you want a new hobby or need gift ideas, this may be something for you!

Where to Get Started

I sat down again with LCCC student Kelsie, a beader, to discuss where and how to get started beading. “Unfortunately, I was never able to take any kind of classes with beading. My experience was watching YouTube videos and basically trial and error. It worked, but I think I would have Michaelsbenefited and learned a lot from beading classes.” Sometimes, Michaels holds free beading classes. It just so happens that on Tuesday, December 9, Michaels is holding a “Free Jewelry 101 Intro Class” from 6 pm – 8 pm. For a full list of events, visit the Michael’s website.

The Tools

Next, we’ll go over some basic tools a person would need to start beading. While discussing what tools you need as a beginner and what each tool does, Kelsie told me, “for a long time, I only had one tool, and it worked out really well. I still use it today, and it is one of my favorite tools! It is a combination pliers, so it has needle nose pliers, a wire cutter, and curved edges to make loops all in one. If you’re a broke college student like me, I would recommend starting out with just this tool.” Kelsie bought this three-in-one tool at Walmart.

If you want to get more tools, Kelsie suggested some tools that could be helpful. “I splurged on one tool in particular that I absolutely love. Not to sound dramatic, but it has completely changed my beading experience. You can buy eye pins, but they can get pretty expensive. With this tool, you can make them yourself. It also allows you to makes loops effortlessly, and they look super professional. Before this tool, I would get really frustrated trying to make loops look nice and round. This tool does it for you!”

The Goods

When I asked Kelsie what materials she uses, she took a deep breath and began running through a long list. “There are so many different materials to use. Just to name a few, there’s chain, leather, wire, beads, pendants, jump rings, findings, and cord. Then, there are different kinds of chains, leather, wires, etc. It’s almost overwhelming how much stuff you can make. I just recently got into making leather bracelet wraps.”

Here’s what each tool and some materials look like:

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