Monday, March 30, 2009

Multi-layered Bead Cap Beads

Friendly Plastic twist bead bracelet with multi-layered bead cap beads.

I've been working on Friendly Plastic beads over the weekend - gorgeous colours..... blue, turquoise and gold - colours that work so well together. But when I came to assemble the beads into a bracelet, I had nothing in my stash that worked - my gold beads were too bright and brassy looking and my blues were all the wrong shade. So it was time to get creative and think outside the square.
And this is what I came up with: use the beadcaps I'd used on the Friendly Plastic beads to create my own matching, multi-layered gold beads. Here's what I did.

Ornate gold "bead cap bead" made up of several layers of bead caps

I gathered a variety of bead caps, beads and of course, eye pins. An inexpensive way to get a selection of bead caps is with one of these bulk mixes that contain an assortment of sizes, shapes and textures.

Selection of gold textured bead caps and jewellery findings

I decided on this combination - a smooth gold metal spacer bead, a pointed bead cap to give some height, and a filigree bead for texture and visual interest. The red bed is simply to keep the two filigree bead caps in place. It's slightly visible when the bead is assembled so you'll need to coordinate it with the beads you're using.

A selection of gold bead caps arranged in order from small to large to small

Assemble the beads and caps in the order shown and then reverse the order for the other end.
Stringing the beads and bead caps from smallest to largest for the first half of the bead cap bead

Hold the eye pin in your flat nosed pliers close to the end of the last bead and bend it at a 90° angle.......
Starting to form the simple loop above the last bead of the bead cap bead

then turn a loop using round nosed pliers.
Forming a simple loop with round nose pliers above the last bead on the eye pin.

And voilà, a very unique, one of a kind bead that matches the bracelet perfectly!
The completed bead cap bead ready for including in a handmade jewellery design


If you find your bead isn't sitting quite right, add a few dabs of a metal jewellery adhesive to the bead caps - something like Beadalon's Bead Fix Gel or Beacon's Glass, Metal & More will do the trick!

Pin this for later!
Make your own ornate bead cap beads inspiration sheet

'Til next time.....

If you can't get enough of My Tutorials and you want even more inspiration, click here to find my books and printable pdfs

Would you like to comment?

  1. This is neat - you see, my solution would have been to paint something! Nothing has to stay the colour it was made. It doesn't work on everything, but that generally doesn't deter me...

  2. Good idea Pauline! It didn't even occur to me to colour something.... that would have given an interesting result - must try that next time!

  3. Love the beads, fab colours. Must have a go at those

  4. Hi Mylene,
    I love your jewellery, it looks so good. I have pinched the image of the bracelet and put it on my blog (with links)as an excellent example of bead rolling, hope you don't mind.

  5. What a beautiful piece!
    I need to learn how to do these beads!


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