Which stringing material should I
use to make crystal rings?
by Katie Hacker
Sponsored by: Beadalon®
Crystal rings are typically made with nylon monofilament, such as SuppleMax. It is available in a variety of diameters, ranging from .006" to .024". The thinnest diameters are perfect for bead weaving because you can pass them several times through seed beads and small crystals.
It's common to use transparent monofilament for crystal rings but there are a variety of colors on the market, so don't be afraid to choose a color that coordinates with your design. Since crystals are translucent, colors like mint or blueberry can reinforce the colors of the beads you choose. Or, you can add some metallic shine to your rings by substituting thin diameters of Beadalon wire, such as .010" or .012".
It is not usually necessary to use a beading needle with SuppleMax or Beadalon 49 because these stringing materials have enough body to allow you to pass them easily through the beads. However, if you're more comfortable using a needle, stick with #10 or #12 sharps.
Most ring patterns ask you to create the top of the ring first. Once this part of the ring is complete, then you typically make the band. Pass the stringing material through the band several times to make sure that it is strong and durable. To finish the ring, tie the ends of the SuppleMax or Beadalon 49 together in a square knot. Add a drop of jeweler's cement to the knot and let it dry before cutting off any extra stringing material.
You can use the same materials and techniques to create beaded beads using crystals and SuppleMax or Beadalon wire. When choosing your stringing material, just remember that transparent nylon monofilament allows the crystals to sparkle on their own, while silver-plated beading wire adds metallic shine.
For more ideas and inspiration visit: www.katiehacker.com