Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Not as simple as it might seem...

I have taught myself how to do many craft projects.  Scrapbooking, quilting, calligraphy...  But, I have always struggled with helping my children make beaded necklaces.  My knots never seem to stay!  

Needless to say, I was thrilled when I opened up an envelope a few days ago and I found 3 helpful books inside.  #1  Beaded Jewelry:  Wirework Techniques, #2 Beaded Jewelry:  Knotting Techniques, and #3 Beaded Jewelry:  Stringing Techniques.  These are fairly small books (probably 5 x 7 inches) and thin (about 1/4").  But, they are packed with great information!  Sometimes it is true that great things come in small packages...

Storey published these three books by Carson Eddy, Rachael Evans, and Kate Feld.  They answered so many questions I've had over the years, but have felt silly for wanting to ask!  I know many people like websites and youtube, but I'm still partial to books.  There are a few reasons why.  

#1  All the information is in one place--ONE place.  I don't have to click around searching for what I can't figure out.  It's all there.

#2  I don't have to sit in front of my computer.  I spend enough time in front of this thing as it is!

#3  I am less distractable...  Oh, what's that other page talking about?  Do I need to read that first?  Oh, that looks more interesting... you get the idea. There's always something else to look at on the interest and so it's easy to miss out on enjoying what's right in front of me.

Those are just a few of my reasons, but basically, I love books.  I prefer books.  And these three are great books that helped me understand how to make jewelry far better than the information I've found on the internet.  

But, back to these books.

Book #1 Wirework Techniques 
This book covers the basics about wire, basics about chain types you can use (not make yourself), findings (clasp, earrings, etc.), what you need to know about tools and then techniques.  Theses books are black and white so the pictures are drawings, but they are very clear and the directions/drawings are very easy to follow.

Book #2  Knotting Techniques
This book covers cords, clasps, tools, knotting techniques, and pearls.  When using this book (and the others for that matter), you'll want to use either a cookbook holder or a heavy object to keep the book propped open while you work.  The square knot directions were easy to follow and I was very thankful for the information about adjustable ways to end a necklace.  I had always wanted to know how to do this!

Book #3  Stringing Techniques
This was the book that surprised me the most of the three.  I had not realized how interesting it would be to learn about the different types of beads and how helpful it would be to understand them!  The other chapters explain the types of stringing materials and findings.  There is a chapter on beading tools as well as one about planning jewelry.  All of the chapters were easy to understand and full of information.  

If you're interested in beading, but don't have the time to take a class, these books would be a great place to start beyond making a simple string with beads and tying it in a knot.   I think these books are a great introduction for the crafty person who wants to start beading.  But, they will give you information and techniques that you can do an amazing amount with!

We're so focused on being entertained by what we see on the computer screen that we often miss the enjoyment of sitting and doing.  These beading books remind me of how valuable it is to get off this silly computer and do something (like my girls, who are making origami rabbits in the other room at the moment for our church's egg hunt this weekend).  

Please note that I received complimentary copies of these three books for review from Storey Publishing.

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