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Video:How to Use a Bead Board

with Tammy Powley

If you love making jewelry with beads, then a bead board might make your projects easier. See how to set up and design pieces of any length on a bead board.See Transcript

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Transcript:How to Use a Bead Board

Hi, I'm Tammy Powley for about.com jewelry making. I'm going to show you how to design beautiful beaded jewelry using a bead board.

What Is a Bead Board?

Bead boards come in different configurations, sizes, and finishes. Most often they are either made of plastic or will have a flocked finish over the plastic.

Bead Board Basics

The basic bead board will have one grooved area for making single strand jewelry pieces. The extra slots allow you to store beads as you work on the board. However, you can also find bead boards configured to allow you to design multiple strand pieces. No matter what type of board you use, all of them include incremental markings, 1 inch and ½ inch. These marks are helpful for determining the length of the finished piece. The center is marked as zero, and then the increments expand from there, 1, 2, 3. So if you wanted to make a 20 inch necklace, your beads would need to fill the groove until the 10 inch marks on either side of the board.

Design Jewelry on a Bead Board

To design on a bead board, place your beads in the groove and start moving them around until you have arranged them in a pattern that you like. Once you have determined the pattern, arrange the beads so that you have the length you desire. Remember to also include the length of a clasp when you are trying to figure out the finished length of your jewelry piece. At this point, you may be ready to string up your beaded design, but what if you aren't 100% satisfied with the design? In that case, set your bead board aside and come back to it a day or two later with a fresh eye.

When you come back and look at your bead board later, you may decide to make a few minor changes to the design. In fact, this is one reason why it is a good idea to have a few bead boards around so that you can let one sit for awhile but still continue to make more jewelry.

Thanks for watching. To learn more about jewelry making, visit me at About.com.
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