I loved Jean Campbell’s post last week on the difference between Superduo and Twin beads so much that I thought I’d follow up this week with a few more of the new shaped beads. If you missed Jean’s in-depth look at two-hole seed beads, see her post here.
Here are the 6 newest shapes to come across my desk:
|BricksThese thick, rectangular, Czech pressed-glass beads are essentially smaller versions of the flat, 2-hole CzechMate Tiles-think of ½ of a CzechMate, with less rounded corners. They measure 6x3x3mm, with two 1mm-large holes that are about 2mm apart. The strands I’ve received are quite consistent in size and don’t require much, if any, culling. I love working flat herringbone stitch with these beads. The beads won’t angle to resemble classic herringbone, but a herringbone thread path quickly joins them. I also love working flat peyote stitch with these beads.|
|RullasRullas are very similar to bricks because they also have 2 holes and are similar in size. However, their cylindrical profile is what sets the two apart. Rullas are 5mm wide and 3mm tall, with the two 1mm-large holes about 1.5mm apart. As with the bricks, I’ve found they are best suited for herringbone and peyote stitches, but this shouldn’t deter you from playing around with them in other stitches. They tend to flop around a bit with flat right-angle weave, so plan on adding a few nets of embellishment beads to keep them in place.|
|BeadStuds What do you get when you sit a pyramid on top of a flat, two-hole CzechMate Tile? A BeadStud! These fun beads are 12mm square at the base and about 9mm tall. The point of the pyramid is only on one side, so be mindful of this if your design will allow the beads to flip around.
I’m sure you’ve seen the many new bead spikes on the market. Give a spike 4 sides and what do you have? A pyramid! Measuring in at 7x11mm, their bases are wide and stable, making them perfect atop a bead-embroidery foundation. The 1mm-large hole sits about 3mm above the base of the bead, so plan to bead around the base of the pyramid to hide any thread left exposed. I would expect these beads to become available in more sizes, if they aren’t already.
These new embellishment beads, designed by Beadwork Designer of the Year Sabine Lippert, are elongated drop beads shaped like a grain of rice with one hole at one end. They measure 6mm long and are 3mm wide on one side and 2mm wide on the other side. I’ve found them to be very consistent in size. They are produced in the Czech Republic.
Miyuki also has a new longer drop bead. Simply called “long drops,” these beads are 5mm long and 3mm wide. They are more bulbous at the end than Rizos. I’ve found the top width of these beads (at the base of the hole) to be a bit inconsistent, so some culling is needed.
|Want to see these beads in action?
Stay tuned for more information on my newest video workshop Beading with Shaped Beads: Tilas, Superduos, Peanuts, and More. In this DVD I discuss today’s most popular shaped beads, including those shown above, and how to use them successfully in beadweaving projects. Download the workshop starting April 8th or purchase the DVD April 30th at interweavestore.com.
Follow along as I explain and demonstrate the techniques that work best with each bead shape, plus watch me share tips for hiding threads, maintaining proper tension, and more. Discover which similar beads are interchangeable and which aren’t.
Please share your experiences with the new shaped beads here. The possibilities are endless.
Editor, Beadwork magazine
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