I’ll always have left over beads from other projects, and always be disappointed. I felt like it was a waste. But then it dawned on me that there has to be some way to make use of them, and it’s multi strand beads.
I’ve made them lots of times using an array of different beads threaded with either cotton cord, beading wire or strong elastic. Each one has turned out absolutely beautiful and all are very simple to make! You’ve gotta give this a try.
Chunky cord bracelet
This gorgeous chunky bracelet was made with beads of a similar color and tone but different shapes and sizes. I like to organize my left over beads by color, so it’s easy to do this sort of thing. But I’ve also made it with multi colored beads of the same size on many occasions, and that looks amazing as well. There are no rules in beading!
A few of the beads will need to be threaded with 3 strands of cord for this bracelet, so make sure some of the beads have fairly large holes.
What you will need
- Thin cotton cord
- Selection of chunky beads
- 2 Leather ends (I’ve used a round leather crimp but a flat leather crimp is just as good)
- 2 Jump rings
- 1 Lobster clasp
How to make it
Step 1 Cut the cord in to three 18 inch pieces
Step 2 Then you’re going to want to knot all three pieces of cord together at one end, making sure you leave sufficient cotton cord to fasten the leather end on to it. What you end up with should look like in the picture above. (See notes on fastening leather ends)
Step 3 Thread all the cotton cords though one fairly large bead, with a hole wide enough to fit all the cords. It should sit snuggly against the knot, without slipping through it.
Step 4 Separate the three pieces of cord. Then, thread a bead on to each piece followed by another large bead onto all three pieces of cord. You’ll then need to push the beads back towards the knot as you go. Just think big bead, 3 smaller beads and then 1 big bead again.
Step 5 Repeat step 4 until you feel like you’ve achieved a good length. Make sure the beads will fit around your wrist, or the wrist of whomever you’re gifting this to. Finish up with all three pieces going though a large bead and then tying a knot.
Step 6 Trim off any access cord then attach a leather end to each end of the bracelet, if you are using a round leather end push the cords in to the end and carefully squeeze the first link. For a flat leather end (See notes on fastening leather ends).
Finish by adding a jump ring to both sides and a clasp onto one side. Then wear this beautiful bracelet until your hearts content. (See notes on opening a jump ring)
Bead and wire bracelet
So let’s shake things up a bit, shall we? This bracelet also looks good as a gorgeous chunky necklace and has been made from a glass beads mix, which you can pick up very reasonably on line. Or, like the other bracelet you can make use of the left overs from your other beading projects!
I’ve used three strands for this one but threaded mainly on two as I wanted to allow the silver of the tigertail to show through. There’s no point putting something on that masks something even more beautiful beneath.
What you will need
How to make it
Step 1 Measure three lengths of beading wire about 14inch each
Thread a crimp bead followed by a jump ring onto all three lengths of beading wire. Push all three wires back through the crimp bead, creating a loop.
Adjust the size of the loop by pulling the crimp bead towards it, making it smaller, but large enough to let a jump ring move freely. Then, you’ll need to squeeze the crimp bead closed with the crimp pliers so it’s not going anywhere. (See notes on crimp beads).
Step 2 Thread all three lengths of wire through the first 1 or 2 beads, depending on preference and then separate the wires and thread a bead onto each outside wire.
Repeat the whole process again; so all three wires through the one bead then separate and thread a bead onto each outer wire.
You’ll want to repeat the sequence until you reach the required bracelet length but finish with the one or two beads though all three wires as you did at the start. If you want to make this a necklace instead of a bracelet, just keep threading until you’ve got something suitable to fit around your neck.
Step 3 Once again, thread a crimp bead followed by a clasp onto all three lengths of beading wire, and then push all three wires back through the crimp bead. This should create a neat little loop.
Adjust the size of the loop by pulling the crimp bead towards it, making it smaller, but large enough to let the clasp move freely. Then, squeeze the crimp bead closed with the crimp pliers.
Trim the beading wire leaving just enough wire to push back though the last bead. Then you have yourself a stunning little bracelet that will impress your friends when you tell them you made it yourself!
That’s all I have for your today folks. I hope I’ve showed you that beading isn’t really all that heard, and it can actually be quite economical to use up your left over beads! Use these as inspiration for your own beading creations. But you have to let me know, what’s your favorite bead color or shape combinations? Do you make bracelets, necklaces, anklets? Share your experience and ideas in the comments section below.