have a way of capturing
your imagination like no other. There's just something about the way a handmade
bead looks and the way it feels in your hand that connects with you on a very
deep level. The very first beads were all handmade, of course: in ancient
times, there were no large machines that could churn out hundreds and thousands
of beads. Beads were made from nuts, seeds, and shells with small holes drilled
into them. Later, as human culture developed and technological advances were made, beads were created one at a time
by skilled artisans and stone carvers, and these beads were valued as currency in
many cultures around the world.People attached mystical significance
to some of these handmade beads, believing that they would protect against evil
spirits or bring good fortune to the person who wore them.
Everyone knows that handmade beads can
be made from glass and ceramic, but they can also be made from fabric, wood, or
even stitched together from other beads! It seems that the range of materials
that can be used to create beads is only limited by our imaginations and our
desire to create these tiny treasures that can be used in so many different ways.
In a way, handmade beads embody the creative spirit of the human race in a way unlike
If you're ready to dive into the world
of handmade beads, Jean Campbell, founding editor of Beadwork
magazine, has some very useful advice for buying handmade
beads. Once you've read her Buyers' Guide to Handmade Beads, it's time to start
your journey into making and using handmade beads.
Pam East shows us how to create unique
filigree enameled beads without the use of a kiln in her Enameled Filigree
Kristal Wick shows us how to make a fabulous
Sassy Silky Bead Angel Dangle using her handmade silk fabric beads.
Why not pair handmade silk beads with novelty
eyelash yarn in Jamie Hogsett's Firecracker Necklace?
Dabble in a little bit of mixed-media bead
making with Belinda Spiwak's Text Beads project using pre-made stoneware beads
and old pages from a book.
Learn how to mimic the look of paint strokes
in Barbara Sperling's amazingly detailed Bearded Iris polymer clay bead
Making beautifully textured polymer clay beads
is as easy as 1-2-3 with Sue Ki Wilcox's Folded Raku Bead Necklace.
However you decide to use them, handmade beads will always have a
special place in the history of humankind and the development of so many
different cultures around the world. I hope you enjoy these free beading
using handmade beads and that they inspire you to make a little
history of your own with handmade beads in your beading projects!