Jewelry Design Inspiration: Strands

Jewerly Design Inspiration - Strands

The question I get most often is where do my design inspirations come from.  So often that I’ve started this Jewelry Design Inspiration feature to hopefully inspire you as well.

Today’s inspiration:  Strands.

Specifically bead strands.

I wrote about playing with materials previously and there are some inspiring ideas for you there about materials.

Today I want to talk about strands of beads.

When I started making jewelry even as a kid what I loved most about it was the beads.  If you’ve been following me awhile you’ve heard the story about how I had this pink unicorn bag (it was a cute little duffel bag shaped purse) where that was just full of beads.  They were all mixed up and in rainbow colors.

When I was moving many years later I found that bag again and started making jewelry again.  Then I started finding all the gorgeous beads there were and I was completely hooked.

How to make a double strand bracelet

Now you can find all shapes, sizes and colors of beads.  It’s almost overwhelming.  If you shop online you can find everything.  But for me there’s nothing like going to a store or bead festival and being able to see the beads up-close and being able to touch them.  (I have to say, I mostly shop online now.  And there is also nothing like getting that package in the mail!  LOL.)

How to Make a Stretch Bracelet

The very first thing I learned to do was to make a stretch bracelet as a child.  It’s the first thing I teach to new jewelry makers, too because you can make a gorgeous bracelet without any special jewelry making tools.

The very next thing?  Simple stringing, which is simply stringing beads on some beading wire and crimping the end to make a necklace or bracelet.  I made jewelry like this for many years before I discovered the wonderful world of wire wrapping.

How to Make a Multi-Strand Bracelet

The multi-strand bracelet above is still one of my most popular tutorials.  Once you have conquered crimp beads this bracelet is simple (that doesn’t mean easy necessarily and it’s certainly time consuming.)  It is also gorgeous.

Multi-Strand Bracelet with Button Accent Tutorial

My inspiration for that bracelet?  Those gorgeous strands of beads.  They are just seed beads.  When I purchased them they were in several strands (like you see above) and looked so beautiful.  I knew I actually wanted to keep the look of all the strands next to each other like how I purchased them.

There are many ways you can use strands in your jewelry designs.  You can simply make a single strand where the focus is the beads.

Simple Stringing Tutorial

Stringing can also free you up to make “intuitive jewelry” where you simply choose some beads and start stringing.

Intuitive Necklace

Double the strands in a Double Strand Bracelet.

How to make a double strand bracelet

Then you can start to get more creative and fun with strands.

These three projects are all from my eCourse Rediscover Your Creativity & Make Jewelry:

Loop Necklace Tutorial

Loop Necklace Tutorial

2 Strand Necklace with chains

2 Strand earrings

To learn simple stringing, click here for my free tutorial.

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