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Simple Tips

Whenever I see a picture of something I'd like to "re-create," I cut the picture out and place it in an extra photo album (three photos per page type) for safe keeping until I can get to it. I also use them for the free project ideas I pick up at my local craft stores. That way, I don't have little pieces of paper floating around the house or in my trays of tools, findings, etc. (I also put my tips and tricks sheets in there.)

Simple Tips

I used to work at Ritz Camera and was able to take home a good amount of Fujifilm canisters to store my beads in (my husband uses them for his chain mail too). Each canister can hold about a hank of beads and the Fuji brand is nearly clear so you can see the beads' color. Then, I printed out labels on my computer to put on the canisters with a description of the contents. An added bonus to these canisters is that the lid can double as a little sample palette when working on a project. You can go to any place they develop film and ask for their canisters, they'll give them free because they're usually thrown away anyway!

Simple Tips

Cut thread on an angle for easier threading. This will make it easier to thread through small needle eyes, as well as prevent it from fraying.

Simple Tips

Save lids and caps with unusual sizes and textures and use as molds for clay projects. Cut uniform shapes or press the textured side of the lid into clay to create unusual patterns.

Simple Tips

I purchased several old lunch trays like those used in school cafeterias. When working on projects, I put everything I need in the various cup/dessert/vegetable areas and put a bead mat in the middle. I can work on several projects without confusion and just stack them when I can't :( bead.

Simple Tips

When buying components online to match a component I already have, I like to take a picture of the one I have, then upload the picture onto my computer to compare it to the one I want to buy, incase my monitor isn't displaying colors correctly.

Simple Tips

When struggling with a needle that's too snug to get through a bead easily, grab the needle with a deflated balloon and pull. The balloon allows you to grab the needle without slipping.

Simple Tips

When multiple projects are taking over your work station, it's possible you'll run out of bead trays for the different colors and types of beads you are using all at once. This is the time to pull out the deviled egg tray you usually save for special occasions. It's the perfect size for holding beads and has an average of 12 additional compartments.

Simple Tips

I keep a chunk of regular wax around not just for keeping my thread from fraying, but heat it up just right, thread the wax like a bead, and it's a great bead-stopper! Just make sure it's cooled off enough not to melt to your needle!

Simple Tips

Use a sponge roller for your needle and thread to transport a project. Snap the roller shut to hold the thread in place so it doesn't tangle.

Simple Tips

Keep your sterling silver components tarnish-free with moisture absorbers. Simply save the tiny silica gel packets, found in handbags and shoe boxes, and place them into the air-tight plastic bag with your sterling silver items. Just remember to keep the silica gel packets away from children and pets, as the contents are harmful if ingested. Tape or glue a yardstick to the bottom edge of your work table. This creates a lip to catch rolling beads and provides a permanent measuring tool right at your fingertips.

Simple Tips

Adding 5 to 6 drops of ammonia to liver of sulfur in water helps to dissolve the liver of sulfur evenly and give you a broader range of oxidized colors.

Simple Tips

Instead of a knotting tool I use a bead-tipped straight pin. After inserting the pin through the knot I push the end into a small piece of soft wood, gives great control and tight knots.

Simple Tips

Use a 2-inch piece of tubing to help guide your needle through a thick beading base. Simply slide the tubing over the exposed needle (sharp end) and use it to power-grip the needle through the project. Take care not to twist your wrist while doing this, or you could bend or snap your needle.

Simple Tips

If you love the look of layered necklaces, but have a hard time experimenting with this latest trend, you are not alone. Try wearing multiple individual pendants, such as graphic pendants, art deco, large bead dangles, and multiple chains in a layered and overlapping arrangement for an eclectic, tailored look.

Simple Tips

This is from my friend Barb, who does jewelry appraisals: Never use rubber bands (or any rubber) near silver or silver plating. The chemicals in the rubber will actually burn through the silver (or SP) and leave nasty black marks--permanently ruining the piece.

Simple Tips

Tiny crimp covers are slippery. To control them, try making a long loop of fine thread, wrap the loop around some fingers and use your index finger and thumb to pinch the thread tightly up against the crimp cover, which you have draped over the front end of the loop. Maintain the tension. Now push the cover over the crimp and close it. If the fit is too tight to withdraw the thread holding the cover, just trim it closely and leave it there.

Simple Tips

On the go with your beads? While portable bead totes are great for the car, they can make for cumbersome airline carry-on luggage. For a travel-size alternative, recycle a portable CD case to tote your beads. They stuff into even the smallest spaces, are easy to grab and provide a stable work surface. Remove the plastic inserts and cut two pieces of cardboard to fit inside the front and back cover pockets. Cut two pieces of thin foam to fit inside the case and press a into the bottom piece of foam. Fill the dish with beads and zip the case closed. The top piece of foam will fit tightly against the bead dish so your traveling beads will stay in place. When you're ready to work, the open case will provide a small but sturdy work surface.

Simple Tips

After spilling more than a few saucers of unstrung beads, I began using a new Saran Wrap product to cover my bowls when they're not in use. Quick Covers are plastic lids that look like small shower caps. They keep the beads in and the dust and cats out.

Simple Tips

For earring makers: I use an ice cube tray to store beads for earring projects. As I find pairs of beads in my bead boxes, I toss them into one of the compartments of the ice cube tray. When the tray is full, I have all the materials ready to go to make 16 pairs of earrings at one time.
382 Resource(s) Found
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