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June 11 , 2009

Fabulous Fabric Beads

Create Custom Beads and Art Jewelry


Don't settle for just any bead when you're creating handcrafted jewelry. Make unique, one-of-a-kind beads from silk, muslin, or hand-dyed ribbon embellished with crystals, fiber, glitter, wire, and more for show-stopping bijoux. Fabulous Fabric Beadscombines beading, scrapbooking, quilting, fiber arts, and mixed-media techniques to create lightweight beads made from rolled tubes of silk fabric and painted or embellished with stamps and other materials.

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Author Kristal Wick shares her simple and highly sought-after techniques for creating basic fabric beads, plus ideas for embellishing to achieve unique effects. Begin with a primer on supplies, materials and tools, suggestions for ideal fabrics, and how to create surface designs on fabric, including painting, dyeing, stamping, stenciling, computer printing, and foiling. How to create basic fabric beads is explained in detail, from cutting, rolling, dipping, and drying to how to create collage beads. Kristal explains how to use wire wrapping and metals and how to incorporate fibers and embellishments.

All beadmaking steps are shown with step-by-step photography and use easy-to-find materials from craft and fabric stores. Sidebars and tips plus bonus information on using successful color palettes help the reader make stunning and personal jewelry. An inspirational gallery of art jewelry pieces using the featured beads gives readers ideas to use beads in ways they never envisioned.

Projects are inexpensive and use readily available materials or fabric scraps or even materials that readers already have in their stash. No expensive equipment is needed and many beads can be made with common components. Plus, beads can be created in just a few hours, and all finished projects can be created in a few hours.

To achieve different shapes, Kristal also uses fabric to cover inexpensive wooden, plastic, and resin beads. In her finished pieces, she combines her unique beads with commercial beads, using simple stringing and wire techniques for stunning art jewelry.

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