Fabulous bead project ideas that don't take forever to complete. Our favorite styles are the trendy, classic, adventurous, the colorful and sophisticated. Most projects can be completed in 1-2 hours, a short afternoon or evening. You will also find information about beading techniques and helpful tips. We offer convenient online shopping at www.BeadBee.com.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Thanks for Reading!

We appreciate that you have taken time out of your day to read our blog and visit our website at www.beadbee.com.

Here is a coupon for $10 off your next purchase of $30 or more
Coupon Code: Blog30
Coupon Expires June 28, 2009

Please send us a message with any questions you have or tell us about topics you would like to learn more about.

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Sunday, June 21, 2009

Don't Let Tool Marks Ruin Your Hard Work

Have you tried Tool Magic yet? It's a gel-like solution that dries to a protective coating for your tools to protect wire work from dents and scratches. Along with good technique, Tool Magic will help ensure that your wire pieces will not be marred by tool marks. I coat my round nose pliers, flat nose pliers w/ tip and chain nose pliers. Ever since I discovered Tool Magic 5 years ago, I always keep a bottle in my tool box.

Depending on how intensive your wire work is, the coating may last through several projects. If you work extensively in wire work or work on several pieces in one sitting, it is a good idea to have two sets of tools. When you need to re-apply Tool Magic to the tools you have been using, you have a fresh set of tools to use as you wait for the solution to set (2-3 hours) and you won't miss out on valuable production time, especially if you are working on a deadline like a wedding or craft show.

Click here to see instructions on how Tool Magic works or visit Bead Bee and ask for a demonstration.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Beading Technique: Cuff Bracelets

If you are looking to make a statement, cuff bracelets are a stunning and versatile fashion accessory. We love this look because the boldness of a cuff can add interest to any outfit in a sophisticated way. Here are a few different techniques you can use to create a cuff bracelet.

One way to achieve the chunky, wide look of a cuff is to make a multi-strand bracelet. This look is simple to make and only requires that you know how to string beads onto flexible beading wire and use a crimping tool. You can choose how many strands you would like to add to make the bracelet wider for a “cuff” look. Play around with a variety of sizes, shapes and colors like mixing pearls with crystals and stones (see photo on top left). Multi-strand clasp and spacer bars can be used to join the strands together.

If you prefer a piece with more structure, create a cuff bracelet from memory wire. A multi-strand piece is joined together with spacer bars. Our example features four strands joined together with four hole spacer bars. However, you can use more or less strands depending on how you use your spacer bars. For example, you can stagger two hole spacer bars to join 4 or 6 strands. Also consider the size of the beads, which will affect how far apart your wire needs to be and which type of spacer bars to use. Using bigger beads will require spacer bars with the holes further apart, smaller beads will require spacer bars with holes closer together. Get instructions for the Summer Sparkle Cuff Bracelet. (See photo on top right)
For a simpler method, simply cut a longer coil of memory wire, and string all the beads on. You will get the width and stiffness without the trouble of multiple strands or spacer bars. (See photo on bottom right)
Our Sizzling Cuff Bracelet design creates a stretch cuff bracelet, made from connecting multiple pieces of beads strung on wire that is looped on the ends. This technique requires knowledge of wire wrapping. Wire wrapped components are strung on gossamer stretch cord so no clasps or findings are needed. The result is breathtaking and the patterns and designs are endless. Click here for detailed instructions for the Sizzling Cuff Bracelet.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Tiger Ebony Twist Beads - Bead of the Week

These elegant tiger ebony wooden beads will add personality to any project. They provide the perfect neutral backdrop for enhancing colorful beads like Swarovski Crystals, Czech Glass or gemstone beads. The elongated shape adds dimension and distinct style and works well with uniquely shaped beads or simple rounds and cubes.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Traveling to Orlando? Visit our Store!

If your summer travels are bringing you to Orlando, add our store to your list of destinations. We are located in the beautiful Baldwin Park Village which has a distinct variety of shops & restaurants.

You may be visiting the theme parks and attractions, but if you would like get a resident's view of Orlando, I would recommend downtown Orlando & Lake Eola Park. There is a farmer's market there every Sunday and a picnic on the lake is perfect for couples and families.

To make your visit sweeter, here is a Bead Bee coupon especially for our out-of-town and in-town guests! We look forward to seeing you!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Green Opal - Bead of the Week

The color of this stone is a mix of rich green and brown hues that are sure to bring out your nature loving side. Green Opal is also known to bring peace, so surround yourself in positive energy with an easy summer look.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Attaching Clasps to Fine Chain

One of my favorite chains is a fine cable chain. This chain is delicate, yet durable, and doesn't overwhelm the other beads and components of my design. However, it is impossible to get jump rings through the links to attach a clasp.
To solve this problem, you can use crimp ends which are basically like crimp beads with loops on the ends. Simply insert the end of your chain into the tube and flatten. I have also discovered a much more elegant trick. Even the finest cable chain will work with 26 gauge wire. Find a coordinating bead, such as a 4mm crystal bicone and wire wrap the clasp to the chain. The end result is much nicer than using clumsy looking crimp ends that are out of proportion or a mismatch to the style of your piece.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Green Fire Agate Beads - Bead of the Week

These green fire agate beads feature rich color and intricate veining - perfect for pieces to go with you summer clothing basics. These beads have a matte, frosted finish that accentuate the texture and soften the color. Incorporate into long chain necklaces, a chunky choker or bold bracelet.