We think these five varied yet versatile beading products will give you the extra inspiration you need to get really excited to bead.
1. Cymbals - Specialty findings designed specifically for certain types of beads
First up on our list are Cymbals, specialty components that fit perfectly with specific types of popular beads just like seed beads and the ever-popular SuperDuo. These unique, imaginative, and groundbreaking metal components were designed with the most desirable beads in mind. They integrate seamlessly with the SuperDuo®, GemDuo®, Miyuki Delica, 11/0 and 8/0 round seed beads, Tila, Half Tila, Silky Bead®, and Honeycomb Bead®.
Cymbals - officially called Cymbal™ Metal Fashion Elements™ - can have one of four different functions. They can be used as bead endings so that they finish off one end of say, a bracelet, with a clean, finished look. You could use them as side beads so that they are shaped on the outside but have a flat side in order to serve the function of building out your patterns. There are also bead substitutes, which take the shape of a particular bead you are using, like, a honeycomb. This is helpful for fleshing out your patterns with consistent shapes and for changing up the colors as Cymbals are frequently silver, gold, rose, or brass. And finally, Cymbals function as connectors by fastening the end of a piece together seamlessly.
They're especially great for experienced bead weavers because there are so many ways to customize with the way that you choose to use them. But they're also fun and versatile, so they're perfect for beginners and novices, as well!
2. Delicas - Perennial favorites for precision bead weaving
If you're looking to incorporate Delicas into your next bead design, try using a peyote stitch, brick stitch, or loom weave. That cylinder shape will give your finished piece a flat surface which glorifies any design or pattern. You'll start to notice that they form tiny rectangles which lock together, forming a perfectly uniform, elegantly beautiful surface. If you've ever bead-stalked Pinterest, you've probably seen how many talented bead artists have used Delicas to create highly-detailed portraits and sculptures with each teensy bead acting as a single pixel of color. Pretty amazing!
One thing you'll never lack for at Auntie's Beads Direct is an extensive selection of exclusive beads and beading components. And all of our beads and findings are lead-free, nickel-safe, and as competitively-priced as you'll find anywhere.
But what is pewter exactly?
Pewter, when referred to as an alloy used to form beads and jewelry findings, is simply an alloy metal made up mostly of zinc, but with trace amounts of other components like antimony, copper, or even silver. These materials lend the metal its strength. During the mining process, there are trace amounts of lead in the metal. However, this is highly-regulated, and all pewter undergoes a lead removal process when it's going to be used in jewelry-making. So, “lead-free pewter” is referring to this purification process.
Now that we know they're safe, what exactly is so exciting about these beads and jewelry findings? Well, the selection for one thing. Charms for a focal point, clasps and toggles for flair, links and connectors for durability, beautiful bead caps for practicality, crimps for finishing, links for, well, linking, spacers for breathing room, and how about a hand for round beads just because they rock!
4. Ergonometric Five-Piece Tool Set - Five essential tools
Need a beading tool or two but not sure which one to get? That's easy, get five. No, really!
The Ergonometric five-piece tool set is one of our absolute favorites and for good reason. You're going to need chain nose pliers for manipulating wire, jump rings and crimps. You're going to need round nose pliers for leverage and bending. You'll need flat nose pliers for holding beads & wire as well as opening & closing those jump rings. You'll want some bent chain nose & cutters for precision cutting and splicing. And you'll most certainly need that pair of semi-flush side cutters for smooth, neat cuts.
As you probably already realize, you get all five with this set of tools, which is an amazing value. Especially if you're just getting into beading, this set is practically mandatory! You'll have exactly what you need for every step along the way. Even for you more advanced beaders: if you're still missing one these tools from your arsenal, try one out. You never know. It might just replace your favorite pair!
5. Round Gemstones - For variety and natural connections
From the planetary marvel of jasper to the piercing mosaic wonder of howlite, these beads are positively resplendent.
If there could be anything better about them other than their sheer beauty, it would have to be their ease-of-use.
Absolutely anyone can beautify their design with semi-precious gemstone beads. And even an expert beader wouldn't dare deny the appeal of a well-placed gem or three. They can take an already special piece and turn it into something truly superb.
So dust off that bead mat (or grab yourself a bead mat - we have them), stock up on some of the five beading products we've been thinking a lot about lately, and let's get beading!