Jenny La Fleur
beading questions - Jenny La Fleur — LiveJournal
adventures in costuming
beading questions
I'm so glad you guys liked the beading video! I'm having trouble shooting the second one, I need to go buy a tripod to get the right angle, so look for the second video next week sometime. In the meantime I had some questions come up so I thought I would answer them all together:

- How exactly do you have your fashion fabric attached to the cotton?
It is stitched on with a machine basting stitch 1/8" away from the edge and then finished with a zigzag stitch along the edge. I took pics of the process of mounting the fashion fabric - now buried deep in the dress diary - here is the link!

- Are you using metallic or wire thread?
I'm using a gold machine sewing thread from Coats & Clark, which is sadly discontinued (I stocked up!). You don't have to use metallic thread for gold/silver beads though. You can use a gold/gray or clear thread. Just remember you want the thread to match/blend with the beads, not the ground.

- Are there certain threads for beading?
Yes, although to be honest I rarely use them! The most popular beading thread is Nymo. It is 100% nylon, slightly waxed and comes in different colors & weights ("OO" is the finest weight threads, while "D" is the heaviest. "OO" is most commonly used for delicate jewelry making with small beads (12/0 or 13/0). For general beadwork, "B" is used with 12/0 or 13/0 beads, "D" for 11/0 or 10/0 beads.) Being nylon it's more durable than cotton but for beadwork on garments I haven't noticed a huge difference in wear and tear. I rarely use Nymo because I don't like working with nylon thread. I'm a bit of a snob that way.

There are 100% poly beading threads as well (Molnyke, Mettler Metrosene are some brand names). I haven't tried those yet. I generally work with silk or cotton/poly thread, the same as I use for garment sewing. It's always on hand and I'm lazy. :P

- What about needles?
There are two kinds of beading needles, long and short. The long ones are the easiest to find but bend out of shape easily and can be unwieldy to sew beads onto a garment. I only use them for making fringe. The short beading needles are better for garment beading I find.

I prefer milliners/straw needles for beading though. The "eye" is small enough for standard 11/0 or 12/0 seed bead to slide through but the needle itself is thicker and sturdier than a typical beading needle. I'm using size 9 milliners needles on the Peacock Dress.

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6 comments | comment?
elegant_musings From: elegant_musings Date: February 23rd, 2011 11:30 pm (UTC) (link)
I didn't get a chance to comment yesterday, but I really loved that beading video! It's always easier for me to learn something watching someone else, and of course since you're the Queen of Beading, who better to learn it from? Thanks for all these tips too--this is getting filed away under my "embellishment" bookmark. ;)

♥ Casey
jennylafleur From: jennylafleur Date: February 24th, 2011 02:04 pm (UTC) (link)
Thanks - I'm so glad you found it helpful! :>
dregae From: dregae Date: February 25th, 2011 10:00 pm (UTC) (link)
Off topic, but I was struck by the similarities of this evening coat and it's fabric to your peacock fabric.

Grace e

jennylafleur From: jennylafleur Date: February 26th, 2011 03:14 pm (UTC) (link)
That is seriously cool - thanks for the link!
From: ccsewing Date: February 26th, 2011 01:04 am (UTC) (link)

Follow up question

I loved the video! Here's a question though. The beading goes all the way to the edge, covering the zig-zag basting, correct? Then the cotton is sewn together for the seam allowances since the beaded panels seam allowance was cut off, right? (I was just trying to imagine when everything is put together). Thanks, Celeste
jennylafleur From: jennylafleur Date: February 26th, 2011 03:21 pm (UTC) (link)

Re: Follow up question

I'm going to treat the panels as appliques rather than pattern pieces. I'll mount the panels (by hand) to an interlining that has been machine sewn. The joins in the vest will be covered or filled in with beads or sequins or something... not sure yet how I'm going to handle that.
6 comments | comment?