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March 30th, 2016 at 08:52 am

Stuff In My Basic Tool Bag for Bead 5D

Like so many things in this life, the following is a work in progress. What seems “clear” to me, may need to be further clarified to make sense to you.

How to choose beads for your braid is a question often asked and so it has me thinking about how do I do that. And, will sharing that help others?

No matter which braid structure the JABber (Jewelry and Accessory Braider) chooses, some combinations will work, and some will not but it helps to know:

1: Maximum Length tip to tip,
2: Maximum Width side to side
3: Maximum Depth front to back
4. Width of bead at the opening – note: sometimes the same as 3.
5. Distance from the center of the opening to the tip.

Fitting beads into a braid structure is not unlike solving a picture puzzle.
For me, the key to puzzle is understanding how the 4th and 5th dimensions of the beads shape will integrate into the body of the braid.

Assuming your willingness to consider all available options one can usually solve your personal concept issues. Options include but are not limited to the use of different structures, bead density Continuous, Fully or Partialy beaded), combinations of bead and stringing materials (1), and the list goes on.

In summary, if you understand the materials and the considerations of the shape, then you are freed from relying on the choices of others.

Whenever possible, braiders tend to like “top drilled” shapes – not the only possible choice – but often the best at least until you have a bit more experience mixing beads into your braids.

There are several inexpensive tools while not absolutely precise, with care, accurate enough to help you plan your project, shop for the beads and stringing materials. These can be found in just about any Home Despot type store – usually for under $10 for all three (amazingly, I do not sell any of them in our store but maybe I should)

As always, your comments, suggestions, request for clarification are welcomed below and in the Facebook (non-traditional) Study Group:
Braids Beaded Kumihimo & More

Enjoy The Making


References & Strange things found in my tool boxes & Go Bag. (add images and/or link details as needed)

1. Carolyn Haulshalter: http://topcenter.typepad.com/

Empire-6in-Pocket-ruler 2. Empire 6inch Pocket Rule Item 2730 0-46609-02730-7

Pocket_ref-Thomas-GloverThomas J Glover – Pocket Ref (2nd Edition – 1997) ISBN: 1-885071-00-0

Lincoln Electric Tip Cleaner Item: KH575 7-25636-08020-1
this tool can be used to determine needle to be used for stringing, to hold the bead while measuring and other things “in a pinch” – while shopping (with floss card) to hold enough beads to get a quick Beads Per Inch count.
also to be explained Wikipedia – Drill Bit Sizes – Conversion Table https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drill_bit_sizes#Drill_Bit_Conversion_Table


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