Whether bead stringing is a new hobby for you or if you want to turn it into your Etsy side hustle, you should invest in specialized beading tools. Custom designed beading tools don’t just make the work process easier. Using proper tools will also help make your bead projects as high-quality as possible, which helps gives your work a professional look and set your work apart from average bead art projects. While they’re often similar to the pliers and wire cutters that many people already own, you aren’t going to find the best beading tools in your garage, though many of our tools were originally designed for the electronics industry.
Take a look our our design center in the VenetianBeadShop. We have an abundance of tools, like you will have after you have been doing this for the 27+ years we have. And we all have our favorite, but for sure you need a good pair of side cutters, crimping tools, a variety of pliers, and wire looping pliers. On our desk you can also see that we have glued a tape measure, we have a computer handy to double check our work to the finished product. We always work with a dremel, that helps us smooth end ends of our lampwork beads and sometimes we need a wee bit more space. You can also see our parts list because we don’t make one of a kind, we keep the parts list nearby to update it if we need to make any changes.
Do I Need Special Bead Tools?
Bead stringing is a delicate, precise art that will reward you for using suitable tools. When it comes to wire cutters, pliers, and the like, several key characteristics separate common tools from specialized craft-oriented ones. While you might not want to spend extra money on new equipment, the cost is small compared to the improvements in quality and user comfort. When you choose the right tools for your bead projects, you’ll enjoy the following benefits:
Industrial tools tend to look like super-sized versions of what you’d use for beading on. As a result, they end up being unwieldy and awkward. When you’re attempting to tie narrow bead wire, you need tools that are a bit smaller. A delicate craft requires delicate tools.
Having tools that will spring back open automatically is a great convenience and a practical boon, as well. Having to pry pliers or wire cutters back open creates some risk of error in your work. Additionally, the slight resistance to your hands squeezing the grip makes it easier to apply specific amounts of pressure that are conducive to good beading. Choosing specialized tools with a built-in spring action may save you effort and improve the quality of your work.
Cushion grips serve a similar purpose to spring systems in that they improve comfort and have practical merits. When you’re working with tools for hours, this kind of comfort is important to keep your hands from growing sore and tired. Additionally, cushion grips will give a little when caught between the pressure you’re applying and the wire you’re working with. This extra bit of control is extremely useful.
Most industrial pliers have ‘teeth’ that are designed to increase friction and grab onto metal. When you’re working with copper wire in the home, there’s no concern about leaving surface-level scratches, after all. This scratching will take away from the metal finish of your beads, though, and make your hard work look worse. Custom-designed smooth jaw pliers and crimping pliers allow you to get the job done while preserving the pristine appearance of your beads. Craft wire cutters also have jaws designed to allow you to produce clear, even snips for your bracelets and necklaces. And don’t make the mistake of one tool for all cutting wire. If the gauge is heavy it will ruin your side cutters you want to use with smaller gauge.
Beading Tools and Materials
Having the right equipment is indispensable when it comes to your bead projects. This includes purpose-built pliers, wire cutters, and similar items. However, it also extends to crimp beads, knotting tools, beading glue, and much more. When it comes to choosing the right tools for bead stringing, you can always count on Venetian Bead Shop.
Wubbers is one of the most respected brands when it comes to producing specialty tools for bead stringing. Our selection of Wubbers tools includes dozens of unique pliers and other pieces of equipment designed for a specific bead-art job, such as crimping. While it’s possible to squeeze some crimp beads into place by hand, the result you get from crimping pliers is unbeatable.
Crimp Beads and Covers
Craft wire can be difficult or borderline impossible to knot by hand. This is why you need a technical solution such as crimp beads, which squeeze a section of wire and keep a piece of beadwork together. Good crimps also take some of the pressure off of the ends of the wire and make your work more durable. When you add a crimp cover, it gives a more professional and seamless look to your design. You can also use knotting tools and beading glue to keep a bracelet together.
Beading glue is a versatile adhesive purpose-designed for holding narrow craft wire and common decorations together. If you use a knotting tool to secure the ends of your craft wire, beading glue will help make sure that the knots stay intact. There is a wide range of glues available that are optimized for specific tasks, such as attaching a bail to a glass pendant or connecting wire ends.
Choosing a high grade of craft wire that’s durable and reliable is essential when it comes to your bead stringing endeavors. After all, the wire is the foundation that your beautiful jewels and beads rest upon. We believe that Softflex and Beadalon carry the finest thin beading wire and choose to carry their brands.
Once you’ve chosen good-quality beading wire, the remaining concern is thickness. While most beads have fairly narrow holes, some are larger and heavier. If you’re working with large hole beads, then you need to choose a suitably thick diameter of wire that will be able to support them.