How to pick the perfect beads for your beadwork project

The first step to create an amazing piece of jewelry is finding the absolute perfect beads. If you start with great beads, you’re more likely to end up with a beautiful final result.

Of course, other aspects of your project like the right wire and the best jewelry findings matter, but beads are often the centerpiece of your creation.

But how exactly do you pick the right beads for your project? Let me help you:

Know What You’re Doing

Once you have a project in mind, picking out your beads will be your first step.  Since you are the one selecting the best beads for your project you can make it as funky as you want!

There’s endless types, shapes, sizes, and colors of beads out there, so to narrow it down you have to think about exactly what you want to make. It can take some time, but it’ll be worth it in the end.

Do you plan to wear your creation on a special occasion? Is it a casual piece, meant to be fun and funky or maybe a piece that’s supposed to be more subdued? Knowing this can help you visualize and be able to select the type of beads will make your piece one of a kind!

If you’re looking for a classy, high-end piece, you might want to look for Swarovski crystals, pearls, or gemstones. If you want a more fun casual look check out Czech glass that has beautiful cuts, African beads with amazing colors and don’t forget metals.

Know How Big It Will Be

After you know the overall look you’re going for on your project, you have to figure out the scale.

There’s lots of different sizes of beads, so picking the perfect one can be tricky. We have stones as small as 1 millimeters and as big as 16, and everything in between!

For sophisticated projects, we tend to recommend smaller beads like small gemstones. However, it’s important to also make sure that the wire you choose will fit the beads you use! If you need help, just ask me to help you find the best size wire for the beads you’ve chosen.

Know What’s Going to Be the Focus

Lots of beaders like to use what we call “primary bead.” A primary bead is the focal point of the project, what draws the eyes.

Many times, we will shape an entire project around a beautiful primary bead or pendant that we really love! Doing this is totally fine, but it’s very important to make sure that the supporting beads go with the focal point well. Make sure the colors, sizes, and material of the surrounding beads support and enhance the primary bead, not detract from it.

Get Beading!

The next step is to just get beading! Once you have all of these things worked out, you should be well on your way to making a wonderful piece of jewelry. If you have any questions, be sure to let me know! I’m happy to help any fellow beads on their next project!