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Info for the new beader
February 18, 2012 4:37 PM   Subscribe

Getting started with making beaded jewelry. Looking for tips and inspiration.

I'd like to start making beaded jewelry. I like big, bright colored beaded jewelry like this. Can you tell me about any websites, blogs or Pinterest boards that would be good for inspiration?

Also, where should I start as a new bead-stringer? What are your fave sites or books for the new beader? Any other tips or advice to impart?

Thanks!
posted by imalaowai to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (8 answers total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
 
This came highly recommended to me by a family member who sells her beaded jewelry at bazaars and bead shows.
posted by royalsong at 5:23 PM on February 18, 2012


Fire Mountain Gems has an overwhelming amount of beads you can browse and they have video tutorials.
posted by oneear at 5:44 PM on February 18, 2012


One Pretty Thing sometimes has jewelry tutorials on their site, or you can search their archive for jewelry and beading tutorials.
posted by christinetheslp at 6:54 PM on February 18, 2012


The library has shelves of excellent books on beading - many styles, lessons/ideas, and galleries of wonderful examples of the art.
posted by aryma at 12:04 AM on February 19, 2012


Seconding Fire Mountain! They're amazing to order from too...very very good prices and you always get a free gift when ordering. And customer service is awesome.
StumbleUpon is great as well, very similar to Pinterest but with specific websites rather than pictures.
I found when starting out that just working with everything a few days at my own pace helped more than anything. May not work for you, but it helped me just get a feel for everything and what worked/didn't work in my creations. =)
posted by PeppahCat at 8:57 AM on February 19, 2012


Fire Mountain is fabulous, but they have steep bulk discounts and high per-order handling charges, so you're best off using them for occasional mega-orders rather than week-to-week odds and ends. For those times when you only really need two brass leverbacks and ten swarovski bicones, I tend to use either Artbeads or Fusion Beads- somewhat higher prices, but free shipping and I know I won't end up upselling myself into like $75 worth of random pretty beads I didn't need.

For inspiration, I've been enjoying browsing Etsy lately-- it's great for finding ways to use particular materials (by searching "labradorite necklace" or whatever), and I really like that you get to see jewelry with a good mixture of difficulty and attractiveness levels. For me, it's been helpful to spend some time looking at crappy necklaces, as well as nice ones, in order to improve my sense of what works or doesn't work in general.
posted by Bardolph at 11:16 AM on February 20, 2012


Thanks, everyone! I'm going to check the Teach Yourself Visually book out of the library, and browse (if not buy from) the Fire Mountain site for ideas. Also love the idea of checking out Etsy for inspiration!
posted by imalaowai at 1:44 PM on February 20, 2012


I've also had amazing experience ordering beads (mostly swarovski and natural mineral beads) off ebay.
posted by royalsong at 11:40 AM on February 21, 2012


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