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Time to have a new year tidy up of your bead boxes and use up all your odds and ends, stray beads and findings. One way to get rid of a big variety of beads in one hit is to make a charm bracelet with a medley of different types of beads combined to make dangling charms. This works particularly well if you adopt a style such as vintage for which antique gold style findings work well combined with decorative beads such as cloissonne, dark coloured glass beads and millifiore pieces. Try blending all your citrus colour beads no matter what shape they are to create a harmonious and bright piece, using a chunky shiny chain for a great statement piece.
Here at Bluestreak Beads we sell over 4000 different beads and findings to our lovely customers. Most of the people who buy our crystal sparkly things are experienced jewellery makers and know exactly what they are looking for. But everyone has to start somewhere and understanding size is one of the areas with which aspiring beaders have the most problems. It is not unusual to have items returned to us because they are smaller than the purchaser realised. Added to that many of our more senior “silver surfer” buyers do not work in millimetres and are unable to imagine for example the size of a little bead described as “round sterling silver spacer bead 2mm“.
The problems for us are that we can’t list the imperial measurement for everything and most beads are shown larger than life size on a website, the medium through which we sell. So for bead newbies we suggest that you get hold of a collection of odd beads, measure them and glue or wire them on to a piece of card with the sizes written underneath until you have grasped the subtle differences between the sizes. Or just draw some circles of different sizes on a piece of paper and keep it handy when popping new beads in your online shopping basket.
In the old days when we sold our beads through a catalogue they were always depicted life size, but that just doesn’t work on a computer screen, and so we created a new and common complaint “The beads I have bought are not the right size”.
Of course we will always take back any product that you bought from us and try to find exactly the bead you need for the job in hand.
You can buy a bead gauge to help with measuring or simply use a ruler.
It’s the start of November and there is ages to go until Christmas but it really isn’t too early to get cracking with some Angel Wings beaded Jewellery. You can use these heavenly beady creatures as cracker fillers or tree decorations. All you need is a pair of jewellery pliers, a few silver plated findings, some glass bell-flower beads. a few fire polished glass beads for the heads and a diamante rondelle to top off the design as a halo!
The wings are the US made Tierra Cast metal castings finished in silver plate.You can make a more upmarket and slightly sparklier version using some Swarovski Crystal beads instead of the Czech Glass, but we like the look the cute little bell flower beads give the Angels in our photo!
They make great bead decorations for a miniature Christmas Tree or make your own wired napkin Rings especially for Christmas Day with a bead angel motif.
They are bright and cute, these little handmade flower beads which are used by jewellery makers to fashion brooches and bracelets, or colourful tiaras and decorations for wedding settings!
These examples are only about 10mm in diameter and are just perfect for incorporating into lots of craft projects. We supply these beads in a mixture of colours, some with leaves poking out from under the petals and some without. The hole in this bead runs through the base of the flower so they can be threaded onto a length of stretch magic elastic jewellery thread to make a quick stretchy bracelet. This could be a fun activity at a girls’ birthday party.
Or take a piece of thin silver plated wire, use the 22 guage for its easy to twist qualities. Pop the wire through the flower bead until it sits halfway along then pull the wire’s ends together underneath and twist them tightly together to gve the flower a shiny twizzly stalk. Add a glass leaf halfway down the stalk if you fancy.
Pearls are for every occasion!
Pearls have always been my jewel of choice. My obsession began when I started collecting pearls as a child. Every year my collection increased by one when I was allowed to choose the perfect oyster that housed my treasured pearl on our family holiday. Whether round or irregular, large or small, acrylic or freshwater, natural or coloured, I love them all. Being a pearl enthusiast, it’s great to be constantly surrounded by the extensive collections of pearl beads available at Bluestreak Beads.For me, pearls have marked major milestones in my life such as birthdays, graduations, and my wedding. Wearing my grandmother’s pearl necklace has become a tradition for most women in my extended family. Do you have a similar tradition in your family? Jewels passed on from generation to generation? If not, why not start now. Create a fabulous pearl necklace, earrings, bracelet, tiara, or hairband that will be worn and cherished by generations to come. We have glass, Swarovski crystal pearls, and freshwater pearls ranging in colour, size, and shape to suit your every need. Pearls are one of the most versatile jewels, suitable for any occasion. Whether you are looking for a subtle but elegant accessory or something more bold and eye-catching, we have a pearl to suit your needs at Bluestreak beads. Our 6mm and 8mm round glass pearls come in various pastel hues, while our Swarovski crystal pearls range from 3 to10mm round to twisted pearls in many colours including white, cream, cream-rose, peach, rose, black, purple and bronze. We have round, button or coin, oval, rice-grain, and baroque freshwater pearls. We’ve just had a new shipment into the Bluestreak Beads warehouse and now have nearly 20 different shades of pink, blue, and green baroque pearls in stock. Overwhelmed by the selection of pearl beads on offer? Unsure of which pearly colours to choose? No need to worry, we sell these baroque pearls in sets of coordinated colours that include seaspray, berry, and warm brown. For something unique and distinctive, why not spice up your earlobes, neck, or wrist with a splash of lime with our bright lime baroque pearls. In whatever pearl project you choose, have fun and happy beading!
The countdown is over, the Olympics are here!
Here at Bluestreak Beads, excitement is brewing as the summer has finally arrived, and just in time for the highly anticipated London 2012 Olympic games! Who will win big? Who will come out on top? Who will win gold? Best of luck to the many Olympic medal hopeful from all of us in the Bluestreak Beads office!
We haven’t got any gold medals here but we do have lots of lovely gold beads to use in your jewellery designing!
It’s time to don our patriotic colours to support our incredible athletes! Why not fashion a necklace or bracelet showcasing our vibrant blues/reds/whites? Check out these hassle-free Team GB jewellery making kits that we have created using a range of vibrant beads with the British patriotic colour scheme. You can make a fun and stylish piece in a matter of minutes. We hope that they inspire you to design something fabulous! Alternatively, you can easily fashion a pair of earrings and necklace with our Swarovski teardrops or their crystal 10mm hearts, Use a medley of sapphire, crystal, and light siam. If you are new to jewellery making, don’t worry, as there are beautiful projects for all skill levels. Please check out our instructions showcasing basic jewellery making techniques.
Just in time for the Olympics our long wait for the sun is finally over and it’s time to don our summer wardrobes and put away our brollies! Need some beady accessories for that new sun dress? Whether you’re after something bright & bold, or simple yet elegant, we have a jewelley making kits to suit all tastes, and they are simple to to make at home. Why not give our bright beady illusion necklace a shot if you like light colourful jewellery made with pretty beads and wire.
Now that school is out for the summer break, are you finding that your kids have too much time on their hands and in need a creative outlet? We have a huge range of easy starter projects to match your child‘s creative flair. I think our watches or bag charms would be fun projects for those with an artistic and imaginative spirit.
Every home jewellery maker loves a Swarovski Bead, a tiny one to use as a sparkly spacer bead, one of the designer shapes for a pendant or earring, maybe a traditional facetted round (Swarovski style number 5000) for a classic necklace design. But Swarovski do not only make beads for jewellery makers. They make stones and the settings to put them in and they make charms, plated in sterling silver with the stones already set into them, for those of us who want it already done for us. Who wouldn’t, sticking fiddly little stones into tiny little cup settings is a time consuming job.
Little charms in the form of hearts, rings and simple flowers settings are available, there is a good colour choice of the stones. We like to use them for more delicate charm bracelets and simple earrings.
Check out the sizes of the charms before you order, things always look bigger on the screen!
The 10mm flower pendant has a solid back and is silver plated, the one in the photo is peridot (light green), we also stock fuchsia, aquamarine and crystal. Use them on a charm bracelet for a bit of extra sparkle.
They look really good mixed with an array of bright beads on a chunky chain as a charm bracelet. Swarovski use different sized stones in the multiple stone settings appropriate to their size. Plating is high quality as you would expect!
Find our range of Swarovski Charms set with stones for jewellery making. here and give them a go next time you want something a little different for your beady hobby!
Tigertail, Beadalon and Flex-rite jewellery threading wires are strong, flexible, nylon-covered wires which are used for stringing necklaces and bracelets. There are stiff enough to use without a needle and hold their shape. The thicker wires are ideal when threading on heavier beads and can be finished with crimps, about which more below. The more strands a wire has the more flexible it is. So 19 strand is the more flexible than the 7 strand and slightly more expensive but gives a luxurious drape to your necklaces. I prefer to use at least 0.018″ diameter and at least 7 strands across all the jewellery wire stringing brands. Plenty of colours are available in most of the wires so they can be used to thread matching beads for floater style necklaces, where you leave the wire bare between bead stations anchored in place by crimps. A crimp is a tiny metal tube about 1.5 mm in diameter which is threaded on to the wire and then squashed closed with a pair of flat nosed jewellery making pliers or a set of crimping pliers. Other threads such as silk and nylon sometimes incorporate a needle which is snipped off after the jewellery piece is completed, but with the stringing wires a needle is not required as the wire is stiff enough to go straight through the hole, this is particularly useful when making jewellery from pearls which have really tiny holes and often cannot be threaded with a needle and the resulting doubled up thread. We stock the most beautiful sterling silver beading wire by beadalon which is just perfect for designs which are made entirely of silver so that they pass the assay test (important if you are selling your handmade jewellery designs). If you are making a special piece of jewellery as a gift, and don’t want to use the basic steel wires then opt for the silver one for a lovely touch of luxury, particularly if you are using extra special beads or just one big central bead or pendant.
We also stock a crinkle beadalon wire, which gives a wavy effect will lend body and drama to you design to your designs. It is available in gold, silver and copper colours. It’s perfect for a nice gently wavy floater necklace made with lightweight beads such as tiny crystals or seedbeads. Crinkle wire comes on a 15 feet per reel and .018″ diameter 7 strand with 4.5kg breaking strain.
Pictured above is a 10 foot reel of sterling silver beadalon ogf 7 strand flexibility.
Time to get threading those beads fellow beady jewellery makers.
Holiday weekend approaches, the flags are flying, and we have done our beady best to join in by designing some pretty jewellery making kits in red, white and blue for the royal occasion! The leather wristband is available with either a red heart bead or a nice “royal” blue pandora bead. It is so simple to make, only a small pair of flat or chain nose pliers is needed to close the leather thong clamps. The whole thing can be finished in under 5 minutes. We’ve got some nifty bead bracelets too made on stretch magic elastic so no tools at all are required for these. We have used lovely cut glass sparkly beads for them mixed with a few feature beads, other beads used include, miyuki cubes, Foiled glass hearts and sparkling stardust beads. The necklace making kits have options with a swinging tassel pendant or a regal crown charm, you can also make a patriotic stretch bracelet with three charms. If you want a new hobby for the bank holiday weekend, you could give jewellery making a go with our pretty and patriotic kits.
Since our new website has been up and running we have a little more time to get all of our wonderful new jewellery making stock up for sale! This week we have some gorgeous new swarovski findings.
We also have lots of Swarovski Charms coming into stock. Starting with these pretty heart pendants, This charm has a bail and is set with 12 Swarovski crystals, size pp24, it is also sterling silver plated. You could use it on a charm bracelet or make a pair of them into earrings or hang one on a simple chain for a delicate necklac
The headpins are set with a Swarovski crystal, size pp18 or approx 2.5mm across. They are sterling silver plated to microns. They are really lovely used with an glass oblate or cushion bead to make a glam pair of earrings with added sparkle. Swarovski Crystal Headpins are 39mm or 1.5″ long.
Prices for these headpins start from 24p
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