Don't forget to poke the photos to enlarge!

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Tiny Jewelry Making 101

I have been on a jewelry making kick for the last few days.  I knew that you would rather see minis, so I decided to make some simple mini jewelry. The only problem with that is finding small enough beads.  I have had better luck at mini shows than at bead stores.  Some of them go down to size 15, but those aren't really small enough.
The ones that I am using here are down to 18s and 20s.   The plier handle in the first photo is covered with #11.

As you can see, the ones that I am using are much smaller.

OK...Here goes.  First you have to locate #28 beading wire.  It used to be sold all over the place and I have a good supply, so I can't really point you in the right direction.

The diagrams in the second photo are how to start and stop on the necklace.  I usually cut a 6" Length of wire to work with. I bend a loop in the center of it by forming a small loop over the end of my bent nosed tweezers.  Then I twist one wire around the other to form the loop end of the closing.

Next I start stringing the beads on the wire. One strand at a time.  As you can see, when I finish stringing the smaller of the two strands, I twist a loop at the very end of the wire to keep the beads from falling off.

Then I load the second wire.  This one will be a little longer than the first strand. 

In this case, I did the first wire with 14 clear, 1 red, 5 clear, 1 red, 5 clear, 1 red 14 clear.

The second wire was 18 clear,1 red, 5 clear, 1 red, 5 clear, 1 red, 18 clear.

Then I made sure that all of the beads were pushed to the end with the loop and made the hook on the other end.  I twisted the bottom wire around the top one a couple of times to hold the beads in place, then I made a loop and flattened it into a hook and wrapped that with a couple more turns of the other wire.
For the earrings, I put 2 clear, 1 red, 2 clear on a length of wire and twisted one end around the other.  I formed a hook and then cut the excess wire off.
As usual, Tessie was hanging over my shoulder with baited breath. As soon as I finished, she volunteered to model the necklace.  Not the earrings though.

She has never had the nerve to have her ears pierced and refuses to let me do it. 

Mind you, the earrings are wearable too, if you have a small person with ear holes.

Tessie's a chicken.

I called her that and she flounced off.  Still wearing the necklace...

That's OK though.  She keeps trying to steal the Egyptian necklace from the Archeology Office.  I keep taking it back.  Maybe this will satisfy her and she will leave the other one alone.

Anyway, if you can find the tiny beads, you can make these in a short length of time... If you have good eyesight, you can do it. I have to do it under a magnifier.

Keep your eye out for the beads.  I don't think that anybody sells them on line.  I would love to find a source.  Let me know if you can find them. 

See you tomorrow.


Mary said...

Casey, for size 16 and smaller beads you could try They have some that are antique in the smaller sizes -- have to check out what's there to see if it's something you might like to use.

Caseymini said...

Mary, thank you so much! That site looks promising!

12Create said...

Thanks for sharing that 'how to'. I'll have to see if I have any tiny beads tucked away.

Marta said...

Hello from Spain: awesome earrings and necklace. Nice jewelry. Keep in touch

Emjay McKarney said...

What about cross-stitch beads? Would they be a good size? They come in lots of colours, both matte and shiny and metallic as well.

Caseymini said...

Cross stitch beads are too big. The place that Mary recommended above has smaller. The ones that I use are 18 or smaller.

Elizabeth S said...

Hi Casey! Your earrings and necklace are wonderful and I appreciate the instructions on how you made them.
And the necklace looks good on Miss Tessie! ( but I am sure that she knows that already) :))


Cordie Kelley said...

I have made a necklace for my smallest doll(5cm) using 2mm beads with a 1 mm hole. How does that compare in size to the beads you use? I bought czech glass beads for buttons and they were so pretty that I used really thin beading elastic to make a simple necklace. It came out like the
1950's large faux pearl necklaces.

Caseymini said...

Cordie, the beads that I used were 1mm and smaller. Think of the size of your hole as the size of the beads that I was using and go down from there.

Fabiola said...

These jewels are precious.

Cordie Kelley said...

Thank you for the information. I haven't done beading before. This website is amazing.

Caseymini said...

Cordite, I have not ordered from that site. I imagine that Mary has, or she probably wouldn't recommend it. I am going to have to go back and look some more.