Is there a trick to keeping multi-strand bracelets/necklaces twisted? I am fairly new at beading, and am self-taught. I see these lovely bracelets in magazines, I string the beads on 5 or 6 strings, thread them through the cones (I have done them both ways, I have twisted them before taking them through the cones and attaching them to the eye pins - I have also not twisted them before attaching them). No matter what I do, the bracelet or necklace doesn't end up staying twisted. It always ends up looking weird!! Help! I can never get it the right length, either, because it doesn't stay twisted to the length I originally wanted it to stay. Thanks now for your help, I NEED IT!!
Welcome to the forums!
I'm sorry to say I don't know the answer to your question but I wish I did. I'll be curious to see if anyone else has a good solution. I've basically given up trying them for exactly the reasons you mentioned.
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I don't know a good answer or solution to that one, too. I have a multistrand necklace and I twist it before putting it on and it stays like that while I'm wearing it.
The only success I've had with twisted strand necklaces or bracelets is to use multi-strand box clasps rather than cones. I attach one end of the first strand to the left loop on one end of a two-strand clasp, and I attach the other end of the first strand to the right loop on the other end of the clasp (i.e., opposite holes on either end of the clasp). Then, I attach one end of the second strand to one remaining hole of the clasp. After it is attached, I add a crimp tube and a wire guard to the last remaining end, and that's when I do the twisting.
At this point, you'll want to have the box clasp closed, with the first three strand ends attached, holding it up in your hand. Just loop the remaining end through it as many times as you want it twisted. Then temporarily attach the crimp and wire guard to the remaining loop of the clasp. Open the clasp and look at the necklace to make sure it is laying properly, and to see if both strands are the correct length. If not, take apart the one end and add or take away beads to make each strand the correct length. Once it lays properly to your satisfaction, then you can squeeze together the wire guard and crimp the crimp tube.
I feel like this may not make sense, but I hope my description does!
I haven't done this with anything except two-strand necklaces - I hope this helps.
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If you look closely at my avatar picture, you'll see that the necklace is twisted. There is a slight "trick" to doing a twist that stays twisted.
Get all of your strands strung and attach one end of all strands to your clasp, cone or whatever you're using. In my necklace, I attached all 3 strands to a link of the chain. Then attach the other end of one strand to the other clasp, cone or whatever. Take the second strand - which should be slightly longer (depending on the size of the beads and how tightly you twist it - you might have to experiment) - and wrap it around the first strand, as tightly or loosely as you want your twist to be and attach it to the other clasp. Then repeat with the 3rd strand, which should be slightly longer than the other 2 (again depending on the size of the beads and how tightly you want to have it twisted) and wrap it around the other 2 and attach it to the clasp. Continue the same way until you have all the strands twisted the way you want them.
My necklace is a store sample and gets handled, re-arranged and "untwisted" all the time, and all I have to do is pick it up and slightly shake it to get it back in place. I made a 3 strand pearl necklace for my mother the same way 3 years ago and it hasn't untwisted yet.
Hope this helps!
Deb - AZ Bead Depot
Excellent advice, Deb! I'll remember this the next time I want to make a necklace with more than 2 strands!
Thanks Deb, this does help!
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mamamia! I don't know how I missed this thread yesterday, but welcome here today in any case. I'm sure you will like it here.
The way I do this is the same way I learned from Barbara Elbe's and Stephanie Tomlinson's books (it was awhile ago):
After you get the bracelet or necklace strung, attach the eye pin and clamp it with a pair of hemostats and either tape those to the table or set a brick or something heavy on them so they stay put. Then take each strand individually, tie a knot or otherwise be able to hold it without it slipping, and twist it a number of times, say 20 although the number is up to you. Then clamp it to the table securely, it will want to unwind. Do this with each strand the same number of times in the same direction. However many times you twist this will be the approximate number of twists in the necklace. I like to give it a few extra twists. Then tie or crimp all the strands together keeping the twist in the strand as you do. Let go of that end and undo the hemostats and the necklace will twist on it's own and stay that way.
Heres one I made with charlottes and cloud quartz dangles last winter:
I hope it helps. Let me know if you have any questions.
I will definitely give this a shot - it sounds (and looks!!) like it works great!!)
Pam ~ Thank You for sharing your creation, I love the simplicity of it all
MelindaB ~ Juneau, Alaska USA
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Pam. Thanks for sharing you beautiful necklace. I always did love quartz. I love the way you did the bail on each piece.
a little, Note of Thanks , to all who shared their ideas. I must try that.
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Thanks Pam, that makes perfect sense! I'd never thought of twisting each strand first but I can see exactly how it would work. I've done something similar to what Deb has done which is fine if you want it loose, but not so much a tight strand, at least the times I've done it.
Please enlighten me - how do you twist the strand? I twist it and the thread inside twists but the beads just spin on the thread. What am I doing wrong? There must be some small thing I'm not getting.
Deb, it doesn't matter that the beads spin on the thread. The threads in the end are going to twist over each other because, well, because they will, and the beads will go with them.
This isn't the way multiple ply yarn or thread itself is actually made, that's made on a spindle, a wheel or a machine, but the principle is the same.
I wonder if you're twisting them enough? I find that if I don't have a good grip on the thread when I twist it it often isn't really twisting much, I'm just doing a twisting motion with my fingers and in the end the thread itself hasn't got much twist to it. That's why I like to have a knot or something else secure to hold onto and twist that. In the case of making fringe that can't happen so I just do my best but for things that don't have to go immediately back through a small opening like the seed beads for fringe it works better for me to either tie a small knot or otherwise put a piece of tape or something on it so that I know the thread is actually twisting.
Pam's method is essentially the same as the one used to make rope -- the individual strands are twisted and held securely and the group of strands are twisted. A rope making machine does both at once; for stranded bracelets you must twist one strand at a time, and when all strands are attached to the two clasps with out untwisting, the tension built in by twisting causes them to all attempt to untwist, all in the same direction, causing the clasp parts to turn in opposite directons, twisting the group of strands.
Try it with just two threads.
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