*Important Information, Tips and Advice for Comparisons and Informed Purchases
As in any other handcrafted field, there is a range from poor craftsmanship to excellent craftsmanship. When purchasing a handcrafted piece of jewelry or handcrafted beaded bracelet, the expectation would certainly be for quality and value.
The following are some tips and advice to consider before purchasing handcrafted beaded jewelry. This information will provide the knowledge to make informed decisions to purchase both quality and value in beaded bracelets or beaded jewelry.
49 Strand Beading Wire - One of the most important quality features of a beaded bracelet, necklace or ankle bracelet is that the designer use 49 strand beading wire. This is the strongest, most flexible and most durable professional wire available. At Bead Dazzled Creations, we design with the highest quality 49 strand beading wire. The break strength of the wire that we design with is 40 pounds. This is the highest strength available.
Pictures can be very deceiving! - Another important feature would be to know the size of the beads. Otherwise, you may end up disappointed! For example, two designers can have a very similar style bracelet. One designer used 4mm beads and 4.5mm letter beads. The other designer used 6mm beads and 5.5mm letter beads. In a picture, the bracelets look the same. However, the size difference and the appearance of the bracelet on a wrist is very different.
Further Explanations :
Smooth Round and Corrugated Round Beads - The most common sizes used in designs are 4mm, 5mm and 6mm. A 6mm size round bead is just very slight under 1/4 of an inch. If a bracelet is primarily design with 4mm beads, it is going to be a relatively thin in diameter bracelet.
Letter Beads - The most commonly used letter beads are the 4.5mm or 5.5mm sizes. The smaller size letter bead is 4.5mm. This size is equivalent to .1772 of an inch or slightly under 3/16 of an inch. This is relatively small and in general, the detail in the lettering is less than perfect. The larger size letter bead is 5.5mm. This size is equivalent to .2165 of an inch or slightly under 1/4 of an inch. In general, the detail and perfection on the 5.5 mm letter bead is of a much nicer quality than on the 4mm letter blocks. The 5.5mm is also available in a premium grade with excellent detail and perfection in the lettering. If you think about how small the 4.5mm letter beads are, wouldn't you prefer the larger size, so that you clearly see the names of those you adore? At Bead Dazzled Creations, we design with the premium 5.5mm letter beads and also hand check the detail.
Ornate Beads - The fancy ornate beads are also handcrafted. Bali beads are the most commonly used ornate beads. They are more available and cost effective but can also have a lot of variation in quality and style. Turkish beads, in general, are handcrafted with much more perfection and have less variation in style and quality. However, they are not as readily available and are more costly. At Bead Dazzled Creations, we design with Bali and Turkish ornate beads. We do hand select beads for quality and perfection.
Bracelet and Jewelry Designs - Recommendations for Value:
In determining whether a handcrafted beaded bracelet or jewelry design is a good value, consider size and detail of the beads. Designs using smaller beads should be less expensive than designs using larger beads. Also, ornate beads are costlier than the smooth or corrugated round beads. So, designs with primarily smooth and / or corrugated round beads with not very many ornate beads should be less expensive than a design that has primarily ornate beads. At Bead Dazzled Creations, we offer many different bracelets designs ranging from smaller to larger designs, simple to very ornate designs. We make every attempt to keep pricing in perspective to value.
Other Materials and Notes:
With our many years of experience, we have made every effort to explain how to purchase handcrafted bracelets and jewelry with quality and value. And most importantly, to receive the handcrafted jewelry that you are looking for and expecting. Please feel free to contact us with any further questions, we would appreciate the opportunity to answer your questions to the best of our very experienced abilities.
14Karat Gold-Filled Beads and Findings - Most designers use 14kt gold-filled beads. This is because 14Kt Gold materials would be too soft for beaded jewelry and would not be durable.
Toggles - There are many beautiful toggles, but there should be a concern for quality and effectiveness. Some potential problems may be toggle strength (bends easily), may not support multi-strand bracelets and /or the bar end may not reliably stay in the circle end (bracelet will fall off). At Bead Dazzled Creations, we design bracelets with quality reliable toggles.
Grow with Me Sizing Chains for Children's Bracelets - There should be consideration for the potential risk of the chain catching on something and also the potential risk of younger children placing the chain in their mouth. We strongly feel that bracelets should be redesigned for size changes.
Multi-strand Bracelets - Each bracelet strand of a multi-strand bracelet should be perfectly aligned with the other bracelet strands. This will ensure that the bracelet will lay nicely on wrist.
Important to remember -
Even with the highest quality materials and crafting, all handcrafted beaded bracelets and jewelry need to be cared for. To maintain the quality, please do not wear your jewelry in water or use a jewelry dip cleaning solution. This can remove and/ or damage the finish of the beads and over some time, can possibly weaken the strength of the beading wire. When not wearing your bracelet or jewelry, store in a plastic bag. This will limit the tarnishing. Clean jewelry regularly. At Bead Dazzled Creations, we strongly recommend Connoisseurs Disposable Jewelry Wipes for cleaning.