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About Stringing Materials & Beading Supplies

Buy your jewellery stringing supplies online or at the craft shows. Whether you need to string with flex wire, wrap with rigid beading wire, knot with silk cord or leather we have something for every project design.

Flexible Jewellery Wire: (tigertail)

Flexible beading wire is available in different thicknesses, brands, quality and colours. All consist of very fine wires twisted together and covered with a smooth nylon coating. It is easy to use requiring no needle or super glue & only the use of a crimp.

Flexible wire comes in different strand quantities- for example 7, 19 etc. This refers to the number of wires entwined to compromise the diameter. The more strands, the more pliable the wire and the less likely it is that the wire will kink. The fine threads of wire are twisted together & covered in a thin layer of nylon.

  • Tiger tail: 42×7. The most economical wire. Made in Japan.

Rigid Craft Wire: (beading wire)

This is often confused as a basic stringing wire but it is too stiff to string your beads.

If you use this to string your beads they will not have the fluidity or motion more flexible wire gives. It is available in many thicknesses (18 – 32 gauges).

Rigid wire can be bent, coiled, twisted and manipulated to form different shapes and link beads together. Wire is available in different gauges, hardness, shape, finish and colour. The thinner the wire, the higher the gauge numbers. We stock a German plated non-tarnish wire which is half hard. This means the wire has been treated by annealing or heating, making it strong whilst preventing brittleness.

Do not be tempted to purchase copper alloy from the hardware. It is cheaper which makes it attractive initially but it is a dead soft wire, which offers no resistance when working with it.

SWG or Standard Wire Gauge. (SWG* standard wire gauge is used in USA)

SWG Thickness in mm Use
18 1mm Make Bracelet Cuffs, Brooches and Findings.
20 .8mm Make Dangles etc for earrings
.65mm Wire Wrapping, Freeform. Most popular all purpose gauge.
24 .5mm Twisting or Weaving.
26 .4mm Wire Wrapping & Weaving.
28 Wire Weaving, Crochet and Knitting
32 .2mm Crochet and Knitting.

Memory Wire

A thin tempered stainless steel wire. It is rigid & retains its shape. It is Quick & Easy to use. Simply loop the end of the wire using round nose pliers, thread all beads onto it & secure the end by forming a loop.

You do not need to use a clasp.

Tip: use industrial strength pliers to cut this wire.

Cords & Leather

Use an array of fibres including thread and leather, especially knotting randomly. It is a great way to add texture

  • Waxed Cord: A cheaper substitute to leather. Avail in .8mm
  • Hemp: An eco-chic alternative and bursting with a huge range of colours. Small .5mm diameter which makes it ideal for stringing gemstones and other beads with smaller drill holes.
  • 100% Silk is the traditional way to string beads & feels incredibly smooth & soft.  Silk has good tensile strength and little stretch so therefore can be easily worked with & knotted.   Necklaces made with silk drape naturally around the contours of the body and always portray a look of elegance and beauty.
  • Leather Thonging: Round 1.5mm. Gives an Ethnic appearance to your jewellery. Use to string beads with large holes.
  • Elastic: Stretchy Bracelets. Simply secure with a double knot.

Needles

  • Split or big eye needles Those of you that struggle to thread a needle may love these. The whole length of the needle opens up for easy threading. Essentially they are two fine needles joined together at each end. This obviously makes them a bit thicker than the other needles, but great if you don’t want to work with very small beads.5.4cm long with a 3.5cm eye. Stringing size 11/0 on thread for crochet, knitting or strung necklaces. They are not recommended for bead weaving.
  • Fine Metal Needle: Use Size 10 for Bead Embroidery or Weaving.

Threads

  • Nymo Thread: “D”. (USA Sizing) Use in Bead Weaving, Loom work & Embroidery. It is a multi strand industrial polyester thread, slightly waxed & twisted.
  • 100% Silk Cord. Natural silk is the traditional stringing material used by beaders for centuries. Avail in .7mm (thread size 6) in a range of colours on a card of 2 mtrs with a needle attached. Silk cord is best for stringing valuable pearls/gemstones when a knot is required between each bead. Silk thread is soft and is easier to make knots with than any other thread and which creates the most beautiful drape. Silk will fray, become dirty and stretch over time (therefore regular re-stringing is recommended) 

TIP: Thread Thickness

The thickness of the thread needs to be matched to the bead holes to avoid loose beads rubbing against it, which will cause the thread to fray and eventually snap. A double strand of a thinner thread is more than secure than 1 thicker thread.

Chain

Chains are not just for bracelets or necklaces. Use chain lengths to add texture or make tassles. We stock a range of steel and brass base chains in belcher, curb and cable styles. Also avail are pre made chains secured with a bolt ring (16”, 18” and 24”) and our best selling fob chain bracelet. It makes a perfect base for a charm bracelet.

What makes brass chain so great to work with?

  • Brass is highly durable
  • Brass is polished easily
  • Brass is corrosion resistant
  • Brass is green: a highly machinable material makes it able to be accurately manufactured with less scrap, less rework and less energy than other materials. Products made from brass generally have good “cradle-to-grave” characteristics as not only do they show good durability but brass is also readily recycled at the end of the products working life.
  • Brass is lead and nickel free
  • Brass has a soft muted colouring which makes it the most complimentary of all metal finishes.
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