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The Bead Smith - Bead Board This is a bead board where you can design your own pieces of jewellery on before you string them together. It works particularly well for bracelets and necklaces. The board itself measures approximately 9.5" by 13" and is made out of plastic. The front is covered in a felt like substance. The flocked surface helps prevent beads from rolling onto the floor. It is reasonably hard wearing however you could probably bend it if you put force on it. I always have it sitting flat on an even surface and never have had any both yet. I wouldn't advise trying to cram it into a space or cupboard. There are six compartments where you can sort and put your findings or beads. They are all in different shapes and sizes so different types of components will fit into them. It is up to yourself to decide which is best for you. There are two rectangular and they have slanted sides so it's easier for you to remove any beads. There are two triangular shapes, a semi-circle and a large rectangular space for you to use. The board has clearly marked measurements on it in both inches and centimetres. Around these measurements there are three channels so you can design 3 designs at any one time. I work in centimetres as I find this easier and usually only use the first channel at any one time. Again this is a personal choice but you do have the option to use either channel. The disadvantages of this board is that the felt part on the top eventually starts to wear off in places however I have had mine for a while and it still is useable. Once it wears off you can see the plastic underneath. I probably shouldn't of put my tools on top of the board as I feel this has done it. The advantages are that it is way easier to make up a design and change it otherwise you will have to restring your piece of jewellery too many times. I store my beads in this board and as long as it isn't knocked and is kept out of reach from children it serves its purpose well. It means that you can be more organised with the whole process of making jewellery which is a good thing as some of the beads are very small and can be annoying to try and get in order. You can see what your design will look like way before you string it up. This saves time and effort if you need to change it as it can be done in two seconds. Otherwise if you have to string it you have to take all the pieces out and start all over again. The channels are in the shape of a necklace so it's easy to visualise what it will look like. Overall I would recommend this board to anyone who wants to make jewellery. It costs £4.99 on ebay new however you can buy then second hand for less. I feel that it would be worth while to buy so you can design your pieces with ease and will not lose as many beads.
I've been making jewellery since I was about 14 or so, and when I was in my teens, my uncle made me a wooden tray that was about 3ft long, and had a slot along one edge and little dug out dips all the way along above that. Basically it was a home made bead tray because back then, this sort of thing wasn't available to buy. I gave up jewellery making when I was in my early 20's and only recently came back to it, of course my own wooden bead tray was something that was long gone by then, and I have to admit I've not replaced it having got more into other types of jewellery making. I have however just made a set up to start my niece on the way with her own jewellery making and I've bought her one of these boards as I remember how useful the one my uncle made me was. Having recieved it now, I think it will do her very well, it's reasonably sturdy though I doubt it will last the years my wooden one did. The flock covering on it is an excellent idea, it makes it less slidey than plain plastic would be and easier to pick up beads and put them down without them rolling. I paid just just over £6 for the one I've bought, and I'm quite happy with that price, mine came from ebay. I have seen them for £10+ in some places, so I think you have to be a little careful where you buy them to be honest. I like that there is more than one chanel to put beads in. This means you can design more than one thing at a time, or you could make several identical items together, or to match such as bracelet, and necklace for example. The open spaces that are dipped in are also nice because they give space to tip beads into put bead pots etc. which will help avoid spills. I suppose my only complaint about the tray is that it's designed only for beads up to a certain size - by this I mean that the indents which you put the beads in while designing your necklace or bracelet are all the same width. If they'd made one wider it would allow it to be used for making chunkier jewellery with larger beads. Also possibly it might be nice if it came with a lid so that work could be set aside with more ease part way through the making process.
If you're into making bead jewellery, I would seriously recommend that you get yourself one of these incredibly useful bead boards made by Beadsmith (if you can't find a beading supplies shop near you, try popping 'Beadsmith bead board' into a search engine, or eBay, it's usually pretty easy to find their stuff online). As any jewellery maker knows, it's really frustrating when all your carefully arranged beads and findings get knocked onto the floor (usually meaning you lose some in the process, which is annoying to put it mildly when you only just had enough to begin with, or they're tiny but expensive!). That's why you need a bead board. This board has three channels for you to lay your beads out in (great for multistrand jewellery), and these have measurements marked on in both inches and centimetres to make planning your pieces even easier. The flocked surface of the board stops beads from rolling about, and there are other compartments for you to store all the bits and bobs you're using (or even considering using). Best of all, when you lay your necklaces, in particular, out in this way, you get a much better idea of what they'll look like when someone is wearing the finished article.
I make a lot of jewellery. It's my favourite hobby. Mostly I make glass necklaces and earrings. I also repair quite a lot for friends. I used to lay the beads out in the pattern I was going to string them, onto a folded towel. I would fold the towel so it had a ridge to hold the beads still, whilst I got them the way I wanted them. (All very high tech stuff!) This system worked after a fashion. However, I still spent more time than I wanted to, chasing beads around the table and floor. On one memorable occasion I managed to catch the towel in my bracelet when I stood up to answer the door. As you can imagine, the beads went everywhere! (The Postman was a bit alarmed because he thought I was swearing at him!) One day about four years ago, I was pottering around a craft shop and came upon a 'Beadsmith Jewellery board'. It cost me £7.00 then. I would have paid double for it! The young woman in the shop probably thought I had gone potty because I got so excited about it. I had never seen one before. This simple little beading tray made everything about the process of stringing beads so much easier. Honestly. Nowadays you can pick them up for between £5.00 - £8.00. The version that is being sold now is covered in a soft greeny grey flock which I imagine holds the beads more firmly and gives a bit of friction when you are trying to pick them up on your threading needle or wire. My earlier model is the same basic shape but without the flock. It has payed for itself many times in the time it has saved me in making necklaces. It looks a little battered now and it has a crack along one edge where the plastic has gone brittle but it still does it's job well. It was obviously developed by a person who knew some of the problems of threading beads. There are three long indentations around the tray to lay out necklace or bracelet designs in. There is a very handy measure around these indentations so that you can see instantly how long your necklace is going to be. The measure radiates out from the centre of the board so that you can use it whichever indentation you use. You have to lay the beads out first if you are using a mixture of beads in order to get the patterns and colours and length looking just right. There are five little 'trays' built into the board to hold spare beads and findings and a larger 'tray' to hold your pliers and snips etc. This means that they are all immediately to hand when you are working. It also enables you to pick the lot up in one go if you need to use your work table something else. (Like feeding the family who have got fed up watching you and want their dinner!) The tray is quite light but rigid and has the capacity to hold enough beads for a few projects at once. It measures 34x23x1.5cm. (Or in English, 13.5x9x0.75 inches.) I have found it very useful to be able to lay the beads out and leave them for a bit, then come back and fiddle with the patterns until they look right to me. The fact that the tray holds them in just the positions I leave them in, makes design a whole lot easier. I hardly ever make mistakes now in the sequences in which I thread the beads because it is so easy to see what the necklace will look like before assembly. Anybody who has ever made a necklace will know how aggravating it is to finish one off, hold it up to admire your handiwork, then discover that one of the Blooming beads has gone for a wander in the middle of the necklace and is in the wrong place, or another one has sneaked itself in whilst you weren't looking! Beads do that just to annoy you, but they find it much harder to do it when the beading tray has got them all under control!! It's true! Some beads are more bloody minded than supermarket trolleys! The only difference I would make to the design would be to vary the depth and width of the indentations where the beads are laid out. This would make them more suitable for different sized beads. Sometimes the larger beads are reluctant to stay still and roll down the tray. I would also like a clip on cover to keep the dust and little fingers out. Those are the only suggestions I could think of to improve this Beadsmith beading tray. If you spend any time making necklaces or bracelets, (or if you have given up because it is too fiddly) I suggest you invest in one of these beading trays and see how much easier the job is made for you. They are stocked by most good craft shops but are probably cheaper to buy on eBay.
I love accessories especially necklace and bracelets. I use to buy accessories every now and then especially from Accessorize. The necklaces and bracelets are so lovely and intricate, I am often wonder how are thes jewellery put together. Four years ago, I enrolled in a weekend jewellery making course in West Dean. It was very informative, helpful and hands on. Suddenly, all the amazement I had about how a piece of necklace is put together appear logical. I was so drawn into creating and designing jewellery, purchasing diiferent kind of beads, learning the jargon for beading and jewellery making, I even try to make some money out of it. Sorry for the long start, this review is about the Bead board for jewellery making. Beads, crystals and findings are all part and parcel of jewellery making, they are lovely to look at but not easy to handle. Often I loose beads and findings as they slip from my hand and fall off the table. Sometimes it just disappear and become untraceable. This bead board was my lifesaver, not only does it keep me organised, it also help prevent loss of beads and findings. This is a great tool to keep those troublesome beads in check. The bead board is rectangle, measuring at about 9.75" by 13.25".The grey colour flocked moulded surface help prevent the beads from rolling around. There are 3 channel with measurements which will help you plan the length of the jewellery, especially necklace length. The channel also allow you to create and plan your design, arrange the beads before threading them together. There are 6 tray of various sizes to hold your beads. After I have a design, I will assembe the various type of beads needed plus the findings ( eg.eye pins and crimp beads ), taking only the required number and organised them on the individual tray. Sometimes, it is difficult to see your creation especially when no one is around to model the jewellery for you. The bead board enable you to view your design before you put the final seal on the jewellery. Simply placed the finished jewellery on the board, the grey coloured board will give you a good perspective of your design. The Bead board costs about £3.70 and is available at most beads shop and online beads site. I have this bead board for a few years now and it is still in good working condition. I would recommend this to anybody who want to have a go on beading and jewellery making.
this grey flocked bead board makes designing stunning beaded jewellery easy. Simply lay out your design on the board before stringing.