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Pearl/Coral/Gold Necklace Question


Ladies & Gentlemen, I have a quick question, that I know can be
answered with the vast knowledge that the Orchid community has. I
am making a pearl necklace (8-9mm FW Pearls) that is also going to
contain approx 4mm Coral beads and 2 - 3 mm gold beads. My dilemma
is this: Originally I was going to tie knots between all the beads
(as in a typical pearl necklace) with white silk. While the final
arraignment of the beads has yet to be finalized, I know that there
will be an alternating pattern between the pearls,coral beads, and
gold beads. However, after thinking about it - I’m afraid that the
size of the knots might interfere with the overall aesthetic of the
necklace. Because the holes on the pearls are rather large - I am
going to have to use a thicker size silk which produces knots which
are also large - especially when sitting in between two gold beads.
Besides using a metal wire (like memory wire or the like) and crimp
beads, what other possible solutions are there? I was thinking
about the possibility of only knotting between the pearls, and let
the coral and gold “touch”. As you already know, however, coral is
a rather soft “stone” to begin with - should I be worried about
continued wear of the coral/coral contact or the coral/gold contact?
I know I could offset the situation by buying larger gold and/or
coral beads - but there is a price issue with that. I welcome any
and all suggestions in the matter, and I thank you in advance.



Bradley, One possible solution, providing the drill-holes of the
pearls are big enough, is to find a way to reduce the size of the
holes by using something like wood, card or even metal (?) collars
that slide into the drill-holes. Very labour intensive and probably
not worth the time with many pearls, but this technique was and still
is used in India and the Middle East to reduce the size of large
drill-holes in natural pearls! Something to think about?

Regards - Nick

 I'm afraid that the size of the knots might interfere with the
overall aesthetic of the necklace. 

Hi Bradley, Just one person’s opinion here… on the other hand, the
knots can add to the overall aesthetic. I recently strung a necklace,
alternating ~8mm red coral beads with 3mm 14k gold beads. The knot
between each bead helped establish a repetitive pattern that I found
to be quite pleasing to the eye. It kind of established a consistency
among the alternating pattern of the beads. Don’t out-think yourself
on this one! :wink:

It also forced me to learn to use the tri-cord knotting tool in
which I invested a while back… another “thread” altogether! No pun

All the best,
Dave Sebaste
Sebaste Studio and
Carolina Artisans’ Gallery
Charlotte, NC (USA)



I suggest that you use thin silk cord - something appropriate to the
size of the gold beads; and compensate for the larger holes in the
pearls by tying larger, more complex knots at those locations.

You’re absolutely right to assume that the friction between gold
alloy and coral would (over time) damage the coral beads. Don’t do
it! :slight_smile: You would encounter a similar problem (again over time) if
you were to use steel wire to string either coral or pearls.

Hope this helps!

   Are you saying that steel wire ie. Beadalon should never be
used with pearls? 

Helene, I won’t say “never” - but I will say “proceed with extreme
caution.” :slight_smile: Steel wire has an alarming tendency to abrade the
drill holes of pearls and other soft gems.