The Knotted Necklace and Bracelet
One of the more elegant presentations of beads or pearls is the single strand with each bead or pearl individually knotted. Many, but certainly not all, of the beads sold in the finest jewelry stores have been prepared this way.
Individually knotting has both visual and functional advantages. Visually, the knots serve to separate each bead, allowing you to see more of each bead. This gives each bead the look of an individual ''work of art.''
Functionally there are two advantages: First, with softer materials such as pearls or malachite, it keeps the beads from rubbing against each other and wearing excessively. Equally important, when using valuable beads, is the consideration of what happens if the strand should break while you're whirling around on the dance floor. With knotted beads you can't lose more than one bead or pearl.
Stringing material: Choose a silk thread that matches the color of your bead and is of sufficient thickness that a double strand of the silk will fit snugly through the bead hole. Not too loosely or your knots will pass through the bead hole. You will need a length of silk approximately six times longer than the length of the finished strand. For an 18-inch (1-1/2 foot) finished necklace start with 9' of silk.
Attach your stringing needle to the double silk and tie the ends together in a simple knot, loosely, to prevent the beads from slipping off. Leave about 6 inches of silk hanging free, this is to allow the French wire, clasp and final knots to be added later.
Add on 4 beads. The knotting begins after the fourth bead on the strand.
||Make a loose overhand knot in the cord.
||When the knot is near the bead, gradually tighten the knot around the tweezer points, (which are against the adjacent bead), then remove the tweezers.
||Place the tweezers or a pair of pliers to the side of the knot furthest from the bead, and press gently, but firmly, to tighten the knot securely against the bead.
Add a bead and repeat Steps 4 - 6 until all but the last four beads have been strung.
Add the last four beads.
Cut a length of French wire to about 1/2 inch and thread it down so that it rests against the edge of the last bead. Add the clasp.
Pass the thread down through the last bead, causing the wire to form a loop around the attachment or the clasp.
Make a knot between the first and second beads.
Pass the thread through the second bead and knot, then the third bead, and knot again.
After the last knot between has been made between the third and fourth beads, pass the thread through the next bead, and cut close to the edge of the bead, concealing the end of the strand inside of the bead.
Apply a small drop of glue to each of the knots just made.
Remove the temporary knot on the other end. (Some bead stringers use an alligator clip instead of a temporary knot).
Repeat Steps 9 - 14 on the other end.
Put on some sharp clothes to wear with your elegant creation and take yourself someplace really nice for lunch, you deserve it!
The separator serves to hold the strands parallel to each other, and add to the visual impact of the overall design. When working the separator into the pattern, the strands are beaded then passed through the individual holes of the separator simultaneously.
When using round or oval style, three-strand clasps you may find the top and bottom attachments are closer to the center of the clasp then the center attachment. To get the beads to line up, start and finish the top and bottom strands with a 2 mm bead.
Divide each strand as follows:
7 of the beads
11 of the beads
7 of the beads
Lay the strands out, side by side one above the other, to ensure that the corresponding beads in each strand are in identical alignment. If not, switch beads around until they are.
Attach a bead tip to one end of each strand following instructions for Using Bead Tips.
Thread on a bead, and following steps previously given, tie a knot.
Repeat Step 5 six more times, for a total of seven beads with knots after each bead.
Pass the thread of one strand through one of the holes in the separator. Repeat with the other strand. Knot each strand to secure the separator.
Thread 11 beads onto each of the strands, knotting after each bead.
Repeat Step 6.
Thread on and knot seven beads to the end of each strand.
Attach a bead tip to each strand.
Attach the bead tip at the end of each three strand to the corresponding loops on the three strand clasp.
Repeat with the bead tips on the other end of the strands, making sure that both sections of the clasp are facing the same direction, either up or down and all four bead tips are facing downward, towards the wrist of the wearer.
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