I string beaded designs on Accu-Flex® beading wire and finish with crimp beads. Sometimes the crimp beads stand out from the design and I'd like to find a way to hide them so they are more integrated into the overall look of the finished piece. What is available to do the job?
I use Hill Tribes fine silver tube beads to cover crimp beads.
Hill Tribes fine silver tube beads are made from a sheet of silver that is wrapped into a tube shape but not soldered closed. Due to this construction, they have a seam that can be opened and closed making them perfect to hide a crimp bead. And because Hill Tribes Silver beads are made of fine silver, they are softer and easier to open than sterling silver tube beads.
Choose a size that suits the size of your crimp bead.
To open a tube bead with a seam, place a pair of flat-nose pliers on each side of the tube's seam, with one jaw along the top and one along the bottom edges. Carefully work the tube bead open.
You can also place two pairs of round-nose pliers inside the tube, one from the top and one from the bottom, and work the tube open by working the seam apart. Be careful not to squeeze too hard as the pliers could leave marks on the silver.
Fit the tube over the crimp bead in your finished design and carefully close the tube back up by squeezing along the sides with flat-nose pliers.
There are new crimp covers available that will do the same job as the Hill Tribes fine silver tube beads. Crimp covers help to disguise the crimp to look more like an actual silver or gold round bead.
Each option offers a different finished look. Choose the one that covers your crimps best and fits in with the overall look of your design.