Let's talk basic necklace supplies. These will be your minimal required supplies needed to create your first piece using the crimping technique for necklaces.
The very basic supplies needed to assemble any piece of jewelry fit into two different categories:
Beads are very common and we'll talk about those in a minute.
Findings, however, may not be familiar to you.
There will be more introduced later but focusing on the basics will ensure your success to complete your first project.
There are too many to discuss here. Different type of findings will be a discussion we will have with each new project you venture in to.
For this particular project I do not list specific amounts, your basic necklace supplies will be determined based on the length you will choose for your particular piece of jewelry.
Here is a chart that provides approximates in basic necklace supplies that is based on the length of your necklace and the size bead you will be using. Take a quick look to get a feel for the amount needed.
Pictured is the diagram of the basic necklace supplies needed for our project.
Let's look at each component or finding exploring what each one is, exactly how they are used and the purpose for each.
Don't forget to visit the beading terminology page if you need a bit more insight on any new or unfamiliar words you may be learning for the first time.
It's there to help.
From the list of supplies let's begin with the most obvious component to the jewelry...the decorative beads.
Beads come in a huge variety of shapes, sizes, colors, textures, materials and the list goes on. It would be too much if I were to cover it all right here.
The basics to beads is the place to discuss this.
Follow the link, it should open in a new window and read it along with this page. Just be sure to come back here and finish
The choice is yours. It all fits together...you'll thank me later.
Next let's move on to the findings needed for the basic necklace supplies.
As stated previously, the beads are strung onto a stringing material and there are a variety of stringing materials.
Different types of stringing materials may be soft flexible stringing wire, nylon cord, elastic, leather and a wide variety of threads.
These stringing materials are all flexible allowing your jewelry to flow and move with you.
But we are not going to talk about all of the different varieties yet.
I am going to talk about the 'one' stringing material I recommend to start with.
A soft flexible beading wirewhich you can read a bit more on it here.
You may also use this remarkable beading wire for other projects as well as we move into more and more projects.
The flexibility of a good stringing beading wire is soft enough that there are many uses. Beading wire comes in an assortment of diameters and the thinner beading wire can even be used to weave jewelry as well.
But let's not get ahead of ourselves. There is much to learn so let's just focus on this one specific component.
It is important to become familiar with your materials as you progress beyond the basics to make sure you are getting decent quality.
I like to start all beginners with a specific beading wire called 'Soft Flex Beading Wire'.
Soft Flex is a nice professional grade wire that, I feel, is moderately priced for the quality you are getting. It will cost more than a lower grade wire but not as high as others. Its a good quality for middle of the road pricing.
It wears well, resist kinking and will last a very long time.
Read more on this wondrous finding that was introduced to me. I rarely use anything else since I was introduced to it.
But...you have to promise to come back and finish reading what is shared here to complete this picture.
Okay now that I have shared that treasured secret with you let's move onto the next finding needed for he basic necklace supplies list...
By definition a clasp is a firm grasp or grip, a tight embrace.
A clasp is used to open and close jewelry vs. a slide on style approach.
A clasp can also be incorporated into the design of the jewelry based on the style of the clasp.
Here are a few of the most common variety of clasp you will encounter.
Again variety is available in style, design, colors and how a clasp operates. You will hear me repeat this particular phrase quite often.
In our project we are using the small lobster claw clasp.
When we create our bracelet we will be using a 'toggle' clasp.
Up to this point we have touched on the findings that the beads are strung on and what opens and closes the jewelry, now we need to talk about the secret ingredient, the finding, that holds it all together.
The next and final finding on the list of basic necklace supplies is the...
Crimp beads are the most important component to either a necklace or bracelet for this type of closing method called 'crimping'.
Some methods call for knotting your stringing material but here we are crimping our stringing material; compressing a pliable crimp bead to hold everything together.
Here is an up close and personal view of the crimp bead we'll be using in our project.
Take a look at this example below for comparison to size.
That demonstrates just how tiny this pliable bead is and these are not the smallest crimps available.
Crimp beads play a very important role in jewelry making.
It is the glue [figuratively speaking] that keeps the beads from falling off the beading wire.
It is what holds the clasp to the beading wire that's holding the beads in place.
It is the 'secret' to the secret sauce of the crimping technique.
[Sorry, didn't mean to go over board there but I just wanted to drive home the point that this little bead has a big job. I'll try to control my excitement.]
Here's an example to help emphasize the importance.
Here is another example.
And just like all the other components we have spoken of, there is a large variety of crimps.
Colors, sizes, styles, as well as different functions crimp beads perform.
If you can't tell, this is actually one of my favorite topics and we will talk more about crimps, the varieties and the different functions.
But that will have to wait til later. [coming soon...]
For now let's continue to just focus on the basics. I'm getting rather excited to get to our project though.
I hope you are too...
This selection of basic necklace supplies and talking about findings can seem rather endless and overwhelming at times, but it's important to remember this is just the basics, for you, the beginner.
I've tried to keep this as simplistic as possible.
As you progress through and start moving beyond the basics, more findings will be introduced, discussed and examples provided for you.
Lots more projects lay ahead that will incorporate these same basic jewelry making supplies and will reinforce what you are learning here.
For now, keep this in stride and move at your pace.
That should round out our introduction to the basic necklace.
If you have completed all of this then the next step is to move onto 'My 1st Beaded Necklace Tutorial'.
Don't be concerned if you have not gotten all your basic necklace supplies and tools together, go ahead and peek how simple this process will be. You will probably want to look through it one or more times before you actually begin your project.
But once you have all your supplies then feel free to try your very first project...a necklace.
We all had to start somewhere and I am here to help you. I'll look forward to hearing more from you and look forward to seeing some of your pictures.