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Stringing heishi


#1

It dawned on me the other day that right in front of me every
morning were the people that might be able to help me with an old
problem…When I first started making jewelry I strung a necklace
that has tube silver beads laying parallel with a polyester cord
recommended for stringing heishi. well the necklace turn out perfect
and my daughter wore it a couple of times.Then we noticed that the
beads were splitting and some of the cord was working through the
splits opening up the tightness…Is there some way of stringing
heishi parallel without the beads splitting?I’ve since made tube
beads by cutting tubing which doesn’t seem to have a split but it’s
just not as fine as the heishi beads. and alot more time consuming
for the number of beads I used! Thanks Lisa


#2

Hello Lisa, It sounds like you did not use the right type of
stringing material and it was probably strung too tightly. You should
restring this necklace with something different and probably pretty
soon. If the cord is stuck in the seams, it’s not going to take long
before those sharp edges saw right through it.

There are several things that should be taken into consideration
when choosing the stringing material…and it sounds like the
polyester thread you used may not have been the best choice for this
necklace, but I’d need more on the type of beads before I
could determine that. Also, how many strands? What type of clasp? How
long is is? The beads…what exactly are they? What are they made
of? Can you see a visible gap in the seam?

I could give you much more specific with more details.

Mardel


#3
   ...Then we noticed that the beads were splitting and some of the
cord was working through the splits opening up the tightness..Is
there some way of stringing heishi parallel without the beads
splitting? 

Heishi can’t be strung too tightly because the walls are too thin
and the string will eventually cut the tubes. This is why
traditionally you see the ends in a cone. The cone ends hide the
little extra space left at the ends of the string to allow a graceful
drape, and will also hide the bare string when the it eventually
stretches. String a little more loosely and figure out a termination
that will allow you to hide the little extra string at the ends.
Another thing is don’t put a crimp bead right at the end of the
heishi tubes. If you use the crimp beads to secure the ends, loop the
string through your hook loop (that’s put through the cone hole),
then attach the crimp bead, securing the thread back on itself. Of
course, leaving a little extra play in the string.

As an interest of note to others, there’s a quick way to string
heishi. Take a piece of paper or light card stock, and fold it
accordian style. Place this on top of a paper plate. Sprinkle heishi
beads over the accordian pleated paper. Tap the paper so the extra
falls off the ends. The heishi tubes will line up in the bottom of
the pleats, ready to be threaded on your long needle. The lip of the
paper plate keeps your extra heishi contained so it doesn’t roll all
over the place, and the plates are easy to roll into a funnel shape
to get extra heishi back into their storage compartment after your
stringing session.


#4
   but I'd need more on the type of beads before I
could determine that. Also, how many strands? 

Think of a log road…:slight_smile: That’s what Iv’e done with heishi beads.
instead of end to end they are laying parrallel to each other as in
111111111. the polyester thread goes in both ends… two threads
running this and go through the beads and then on to the next bead
to bring it close together. the necklace is approximately 16 inches
long with a hand wrought hook and ring clasp. yes I can see a gap
opening up in a couple of the beads and that is where the threads
are working thru. If you want to contact me offline give it a shot at
@gnmhllw

I appreciate your help
Lisa


#5

Lisa, That info helps quite a bit. Here comes a lot of assumptions:
You have a “woven” necklace, rather than a “strung” necklace and it’s
more like “beadwork” rather than “bead stringing”. You have made a
necklace from what would be a base row of a brick stitch pattern
(Your tubular heishi is just like bugle beads). You would have used
two threads weaving in through each end of the heishi tube and past
each other and back out the opposite ends OR you used a single thread
and lashed each new bead to the previous, right? I’m assuming that
you were choosing your thread for strength and so that it did not
show on the ends. Maybe you pulled it tightly so the beads were snug
against each other and also to have the least amount of thread
showing on the ends of the heishi. If all of this is correct, then
you have woven your necklace much too tight.

If I were making the necklace you describe, I would use Spiderwire,
Fireline or PowerPro. These are made of gel-spun polyethelyne. (I buy
Spiderwire at the sporting goods section of the big blue box store
for much less than the same thing packaged for jewerly). This is NOT
your ordinary fishing line. Ordinary fishing line is made of nylon
and is unsuitable for stringing of any kind. I like the GSP stuff
because it’s semi-transparent, won’t break, and has good body. You
can get this stuff in monofilament or braided type.

Because your beads are probably a flat end heishi designed to be
strung as liquid silver, they have sharp edges. Because of the way
you are weaving them and because they weigh practically nothing, the
lightest gauge you can get is going to do the job. The truth is, if
these beads really are thin gauge flat end heishi, the polyester
would probably be fine except for the fact that it was strung too
tight. See…you have to do this kind of thing not to loose and not
too tight…but just enough, plus the tension has to be consistent
throughout the piece or there would be gaps between some of the
beads. You can control the tension most easily with a single thread
weaving technique than with a double thread weaving technique. Pinch
the “base row” between your index finger and thumb as you add each
new bead and tighten only enough to snug up to the previous work. By
pinching it you are not allowing it to loosen itself up while you add
the next bead. It’s all practice on that kind of thing. Does this all
make sense? Anyway, given the details of your project, that’s my
advice. Hope it helps.

Mardel


#6

You can control the tension most easily with a single thread weaving
technique than with a double thread weaving technique. Pinch the
"base row" between your index finger and thumb as you add each new
bead and tighten only enough to snug up to the previous work. Hope
it helps. Mardel Thank you very much…this is just what I’ve done
and will do again with the better threads and looser tension. Happy
Hug your turkey day all and thank you for being there!! Lisa in cold
cold NY