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It’s surprising how easy it is to create fabulous jewellery with just a few tools and components. From stringing beads to make a necklace, to actually making the beads yourself, the following pages contain all you need to know to get you started.Part of the fun making your own jewellery is seeking out the materials for your chosen project: bead shops are a treasure trove of enticing beads and findings that are fun and easy to put together, and usually inexpensive too. Of course, the Internet gives access to an even wider selection.
In addition to beads and findings, there’s a whole host of specialist materials, such as air-dry clay, polymer clay, and metal clay. These versatile materials are widely available and make the craft of making jewellery particularly exciting.
If you’re looking to make a special piece of jewellery, semi-precious beads are not as costly as you may think. Also, consider taking apart old jewellery to reuse the beads: it’s a wonderful way to achieve a vintage style and give new life to a treasured but broken piece of jewellery.
Now is your chance to experiment with techniques that are now to you. If you’re a keen needle workers, the loom-woven cuff is sure to appeal, as the beads are woven with a needle and thread on a beed loom using an age-old weaving technique.
If you already enjoy modelling with clay, there are projects for making your own beads, a pendant, and brooch using a variety of clays that are a far cry from the lumpy modelling materials you may remember from a few years ago.
All the projects are very adaptable – for instance, if you’re making a necklace, you could also make a shorter version for a matching bracelet. Your own homemade beads can be strung as necklaces or bracelets, or hung from ear wires to make beautiful earrings. Be inspired to take the techniques further and create your very own designs. Handcrafted jewellery pieces are always welcome gifts and can be given an extra-personal touch by making the piece in the recipient’s favourite colours and style.

Craft techniques & Projects – Dorling Kindersley Limited

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