May 30, 2017

Navigating Crimps, Guardians, and Crimp Covers

Successfully finishing off beaded jewelry pieces is, obviously, a crucial skill to master when beading. While some beaders prefer to use Clamshell Ends, another way to secure the ends of a beaded necklace or bracelet is by using Crimp Tubes. Which method you select is a personal preference, but it is nice to have options. With Beadshop’s new free handout Using Crimps, Guardians, and Covers, you will learn how to use crimp tubes in your beading designs. Additionally, the handout instructs you on using other components that go with crimp tubes, such as Wire Guardians and Crimp Covers

Xuron 4-in-1 Crimper
Starting with a detailed description and step-by-step illustrated instructions of how to manipulate the Xuron 4-in-1 Crimper, the downloadable instructions demystify this multifunctional hand tool. It is call 4-in-1 because you are able to use these crimping pliers to secure more than one size of crimp tube. Plus, they are also useful for covering the crimp tube with a cover, which gives an extra finishing touch to the completed jewelry item.

If you have been hesitant to add crimp tubes to your jewelry making skill set, do not wait any longer. Head over to the Using Crimps, Guardians, and Covers Skillbuilder on, where you can also view a previously filmed Facebook Live episode that demonstrates these components. 

Crimp tubes offer a way to create a unique look to a bracelet or necklace. The addition of using the covers to go over the crimp tubes and the guards to cover the loop of beading wire on the end of a bead strand produce a professionally finished element to your beaded jewelry. 

May 11, 2017

Coupons and Giveaways and Codes, Oh My!

When there's a sale or a giveaway at, you'll want to get that order placed quickly! But wait...Where does that coupon code go? And how to you get the giveaway??

Here are some helpful tips and tricks to get you through the checkout process easily, no matter what kind of device you are using.

For a Laptop or Desktop Computer:

When you have finished shopping, head to your cart. You can do this either by clicking “CART” found on the top right corner of the page.

Once there, you’ll see a list of all the items you are about to purchase. This is a great time to review your items. Have you forgotten anything? Need to switch out a color? You can delete items or change quantities here as well.

Below the list is a little box that says “Special instructions for seller” and this is where you’d write in any notes for us. We refer to these as “Order Notes” or "Shipping Notes" often, if you hear us chat about them on a live show. If you have a giveaway phrase or need to let the Shipping Team know about anything, this is the spot to type it!

Once you’ve added any notes (if needed) click “CHECK OUT” at the bottom. Coupons and shipping options are available on the upcoming pages.

So! You’ve clicked “check out” and have been brought to a new page. This page is where you fill out your information. On the right, you’ll see a box labeled “Gift card or discount code,” which is where you’ll enter one if you have one! Be sure it’s spelled correctly, with no spaces. Click the grey “Apply” button next to the box, and watch your total price DROP!

Once that is done and your information is filled out, click to continue through the checkout process. On the subsequent pages, enter all your info and select how you’d like to pay.

For a Smartphone or Tablet:

On a mobile device, you will see a small cart icon on the top left of the page, on every page. Click it! 

Now that you're in your cart, again, below the list of your products is the Order Notes box that says “Special instructions for seller,” so be sure to type any giveaway codes here! This is also the space for anything else you may need us to know, like color requests or just saying hello!

Just like with the computer version, you'll click “check out," but you'll notice there doesn't seem to be a coupon code box on this next page! Don't worry...It's just hiding. On the top, you’ll see a blue cart and the words “Show order summary,” which you will need to click, and then poof! The discount box appears. It is labeled “Gift card or discount code,” which is where you’ll enter one if you have one! Be sure it’s spelled correctly!! Click the grey arrow button next to the box to apply.

Once that is done and your information is filled out, click to continue through the checkout process. On the subsequent pages, enter all your info, and select how you’d like to pay. Once you’ve paid, you’re all set! Sit back and wait for your goodies to arrive!

May 6, 2017

Memory Wire Beading Tips

Memory Wire Assorted Sizes in Copper
We are welcoming back Memory Wire into the beadshop inventory, and to celebrate the return of this wonderful jewelry making product, Janice and Kate made it the star of one of their Facebook Live Shows: Making Magic with Memory Wire

During the show, Janice and Kate demonstrated how to work with the wire, and while they made jewelry and answered questions from a live audience, they also shared some helpful tips for creating with this product. Below are just a few gems of knowledge from the show:
  • When stringing beads on multiple loops of Memory Wire, Janice likes to tape one end of the wire to the table. Then, with the other end of the wire, she feeds beads onto the wire, allowing them to spiral down the loops of wire as she continues to add on more beads. This trick makes adding lots of beads to the wire surprisingly fast.
  • Kate demonstrated how to make loops on the end of the Memory Wire to help finish off a piece. She used round-nose pliers for this. Once you have the loops made, you can also attach dangle elements to each end.
  • Headpins and eyepins are useful for adding dangles to the loops on the ends of Memory Wire, but you can also use headpins to connect separate loops of beaded Memory Wire together to form a type of cuff-style bracelet. 
  • To work safely with Memory Wire, which is made of carbon steel, Kate and Janice both reminded us that pieces of the wire can go flying when you cut it. In order to prevent this, cover the section you plan to cut with your hand while cutting the wire.
  • Cutting memory wire is another issue discussed during the show because you can damage your good wire cutters if you use them to cut Memory Wire. Instead, it is worth investing in a Xuron Memory Wire Cutterwhich is made specifically for cutting Memory Wire. 
  • Xuron Memory Wire Cutter

You can find an assortment of free Memory Wire projects to inspire and instruct you in designing with this fun and simple jewelry making supply in the new Memory Wire Is Back project area. Beginners will love how easy it is to make these multiple loop bracelets, and seasoned beaders will enjoy how fast they can create them.

Tall Meadow ~ Sample and Project by Janice Parsons

May 2, 2017

Join us for our First Annual Bead Retreat!

St. Francis Retreat Center, San Juan Bautista, California

Please save the dates: September 15-17, 2017

We have an amazing beading and design retreat planned for 
a small community of 25 beaders. We hope you can join us. 
We're going to the rustic but beautiful 
St. Francis Retreat Center in San Juan Bautista. 

There will be lots of learning, good food, graceful surroundings 
and hopefully, the chance to meet new friends and reconnect with old. 
Come and get away and bead with us for a weekend to remember.

Kate, Janice and Emily will be sharing their three styles of Designing with Color:

Kate will teach you how to tap into your personal color intuition 
and find your inner color voice. 

Janice will help train your eye to see beading 
through color and to select palettes that reflect your "bead print". 

And, Emily, the newest addition to our Learning Team, 
will share how to create a color story 
via the process of color-staining beads.

We'll do all this while creating the most amazing jewelry!

by Kate Richbourg
By Janice Parsons

On May 15, we will be posting information with complete details 
on how to sign up. 
Until then, just pencil us in on your calendar. 

(PS- It's Kate's birthday weekend, 
so we're going to throw her a surprise party...don't tell anyone!)

Soft Flex Collection Arrived!

Soft Flex Collection
The choice of which brand of beading wire is very subjective for most jewelry designers. However, Soft Flex is a brand that has a wonderful reputation and is popular with many beaders. We are happy to announce that Beadshop now has Soft Flex beading wire as well as many other findings and tools from this company as part of our Soft Flex Collection.

Soft Flex .014 Satin Silver
Probably the most well-known Soft Flex product is the Satin Silver beading wire in .014 diameter. It is available in both 30 foot and 10 foot spools. This beading wire is made up of 21 strands and micro-coated so that it is strong but also flexible. The thickness ideally works with an assortment of light to medium weight beads such as pearls, gemstones, and seed beads, as well as glass and crystal beads

Beadsmith Double Notch Crimping Tool
While you can finish the ends of Soft Flex beading wire with clam shells (also known as bead tips), many veteran beaders like to finish off the wire with crimp beads. Therefore, you want a good tool for this, and the Beadsmith Double Notch Crimping Tool is exactly what you need to get a good seal on 2mm to 3mm round tube-shaped crimp beads. 

Enjoy browsing through this new and extensive assortment of beading wires, tools, and findings that are part of the Soft Flex Collection. You will discover simple methods for giving your jewelry pieces a finishing touch that looks clean and professional. 

Flash Sale Friday...get creative!

Last week Kate went shopping for some special strands at a local gem show, and she brought back six stone strands she couldn't live with...