Beading surface

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Top 150 Contributor
Posts 146
on Jan 16, 2013 7:13 PM

Where can I find a soft, durable beading surface used especially for seed bead bead woven work?

I'm looking for something larger 12 X 16, not the small 3 piece set of mats sold in craft stores.



Top 25 Contributor
Posts 1,607
D.M.Z wrote
on Jan 16, 2013 9:39 PM

Go to your local Goodwill or St. Vinnies or even a real a big size Vellux blanket and go at it with scissors. I have a lt. green Vellux here that has started to split on the edges, I'll wash it up and make a cover for the whole front of my work table (where I bead) the biggest bead mat in the world, 3' deep x 5' long..............wowser. And there will be enough left over to make doggie blankies out of the rest of it. My first bead mat was given to me by a lady who was gifted a king sized Vellux, and she didn't have a king bed, so she just trimmed to fit what she had and handed out the extra pieces when she gave classes..........I still have them, they are baby blue. LOL. Donna

Top 150 Contributor
Posts 146
on Jan 17, 2013 6:56 AM

Thanks, I'll look into your suggestions.

Top 150 Contributor
Posts 146
on Jan 17, 2013 6:57 AM

Thanks, sounds like a good solution to the problem.

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Luv2CUSmile wrote
on Jan 17, 2013 11:16 AM

You can also cover an old cutting mat- I had one that I had really used up til the outer lining was lifting off- I covered the entire thing and although it fits on my desk (I have an L-shaped large desk) It does still give me desk area on that side so I don't have to worry that my other crafting stuff will mess up my "cover"- (I added a layer of foam first before covering so I could use pins to pin things securely when needed too- I like the foam because it doesn't make it "too" soft/cushiony but still has some "give" to it.


Good luck!

Top 150 Contributor
Posts 146
on Jan 17, 2013 12:05 PM

'sounds like a good idea, thanks.

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Gyspy Mary wrote
on Jan 17, 2013 4:13 PM

I like "Cafeteria Trays" for beading. I used a bead Mat I got at Jay's of Tucson(very cheap) I masking taped it to one side. I use the rest of the tray for my bead containers.

Thanks, for the tip "Foam underneath." now why didn't I think of that! Great Tip!

A Friend of mine uses a Throw rug with a berber nap. and rolls up when she is done.(she lives in an RV, not much room)She beads at her table.

 ps. try local Thrift stores

Gyspy Mary

Blessed are those who can Give, without remembering

and Take with out Forgetting

Top 150 Contributor
Posts 146
on Jan 17, 2013 4:38 PM

.....hmm, interesting.....I need to find somewhere I can get a cafeteria tray!  I like that idea.

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Tia Dalma wrote
on Jan 17, 2013 8:49 PM

White Dog Jewelry,

I found some very inexpensive cafeteria style trays on ebay last's always worth it to look!

But I also use a small cookie sheet lined with a's about 14" x 9" I think...

And last but not least, I use gem display trays. The wooden ones that are covered with paper that's tectured to look like leather or something...I get them very inexpensively at Gems on Display .com

The display trays are awesome...they are 8" x 14"...I do have the (cheap) velvet boards/inserts that go in them but I don't like working on the velvet surface all that much so I just cut a bead mat to size and put it on top of the velvet board/insert and it works wonderfully! Plus you can stack these trays up with projects, beads, tools etc!

my old LBS sold beadmats that are a really good size...maybe 24" x 18"...big enough to cut in half and still be a good size. and they were $1 each so I bought a lot of them before I moved. Most LBS stock some sort of bead mats for good prices but you can also get them at various online bead stores.

FMG, Charlene's Beads, Beadaholique, Fusion Beads etc...

Top 150 Contributor
Posts 146
on Jan 18, 2013 6:55 AM

thanks for those great tips, I appreciate it very much.

Happy Beading in 2013!

Top 200 Contributor
Posts 108
snybee wrote
on Jan 20, 2013 3:24 PM

You might also want to check out Bead On It Boards (website is same but with no spaces). They have shown these in the most recent Beadwork magazine. I have five of them! While they are not cheap, they are great for beading -- the beads stay put and the mat doesn't creep all over the table on me like the vellux fabric ones! Seed beads will also lay hole-side up if you lightly tap the beads. And I am a user and not connected to the company in any way.


Top 150 Contributor
Posts 146
on Jan 20, 2013 4:26 PM

Actually, I just saw their ad in Beadwork, but thanks for your reply, I appreciate it.

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