Monday, May 11, 2015

Slide Connectors - a Neat and Quick Way to Finish a Beaded Bracelet

Have you seen the new Slide Connector Clasp Sets from Beadalon? 
Beadwork and Loom Design clasp set

These barrel-shaped connectors are a huge timesaver when it comes to finishing stitched beadwork and loom designs because there is no stitching required to secure the design to the clasp. Sound intriguing? Then read on to learn more about them!

Slide Connectors come ready to use with a clasp and extension chain already attached. They're available in gold and silver and come in three sizes: 13mm, 20mm and 26mm. I'm working with a 13mm set which will fit a beaded bracelet that I started two years ago - this was just the push I needed to finish it! So let's see how it works.
barrel connector with attached clasp
Looking closely at the fitting you'll notice a slit that runs the entire length of the barrels. At each end is a round disk which acts as a stopper. One end is already closed and the other is ready for you to feed your work into.
slit runs length of barrel

To use the fitting, insert the last row (or the last two rows for smaller beads) into the slit and begin sliding it into the tube.
Insert stitched beads into slit

Continue gently feeding it into the slit until it's fully inserted.
Feed beadwork into slot of Slide Connector

Press the open disk down onto the cylinder until it's completely closed. You can use chain nose pliers to help you with this if you find it too difficult with your fingers. If needed, press the disk down onto your work surface to close it further. Finish the other end of the bracelet in the same way.
Close disk on top of barrel

And here's my finished bracelet - the Slide Connector Clasp Set took only minutes to attach and it gives the bracelet a very neat and professional finish!
Beadalon Slide Connector Clasp Set

As you can see, Beadalon Slide Connectors are excellent for finishing beadwork designs. But it doesn't stop there; they also work well with designs made from multiple strands of beading wire (just crimp the end before sliding each strand into the fitting), ball chain, rhinestone cup chain and any other stringing material that can be anchored inside the tube.

Apart from being timesaving, Beadalon Slide Connectors give your designs a professional finish and they make your design more visually appealing because the loops that are usually required on a barrel fitting have been done away with - that's the thing I like most about these connectors!

How to finish your beaded jewellery with slide clasps inspiration sheet

'Til next time.....

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