We often hear from customers that they just don’t understand wire gauges. It is confusing,and we can blame it on “Brown & Sharpe” who established the AWG standardized wire gauge system for the American market in 1857 and was mainly used to describe the diameters of electrically conducting wire. They had no idea that jewelers would be using this slightly mind bending system.
By definition, 36 AWG is 0.005 inches in diameter, and 0000 AWG is 0.46 inches in diameter. So you get the picture, the larger the number, the smaller the wire. Other countries simply use the metric system with the wire being described in millimeters.
The nominal size of the holes in our Authentic Venetian Beads is 1mm, because as a rule we use a 1mm mandrel in our lampwork beads. We like to work with the 19 Gauge as it is strong enough for our Murano Glass Beads. For Swarovski Crystals, you will want to use about 14 Gauge.
We do make larger size holes for specific uses, like our PerlaVita line of large hole European Bracelet Beads and our beads for leather, like our Murano Glass beads for RegalizTM.
If you have any other suggestions or questions, drop us a note. We’ll do our best to answer. ;>)