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All about Beading Crimps

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Crimps can provide great help in making advanced and intricate beading designs. Crimps are essential materials for beading because of their ability to secure the beads on sections of the thread. Crimps are metal findings that can be pressed in order to be secured to the thread.
There are different types of crimps for various beading projects. The types of crimps vary in size and length. Some of these crimps are easy to use and are ideal for first time bead makers. However, some require the use of advanced beading skills. Here are some of the most commonly used crimps for beadwork.

1. Cylinder crimps are best for holding flexible wires. This is because the elongated structures of cylinder crimps are effective in keeping thread steady. These crimps are sometimes made from different metals such as gold, sterling, silver, and copper. Affordable varieties of gold-plated and silver-plated crimps are also widely available today.

2. Micro crimps are the smallest crimps available. Micro crimps that measure one millimeter by one millimeter are ideal crimps for beaded jewelry with floating bead designs, since these crimps' small size make them more difficult to spot. These crimps are also available in gold, silver, and copper. Working with a micro crimp would require the use of specialized pliers.

3. Two-millimeter crimps are best for larger floating beads. This type of crimp is used just like a micro crimp; the only difference is that a two-millimeter crimp is slightly larger. The crimp's size makes it best for larger beads that require more support.

4. An all-around crimp is a crimp measuring two millimeters by two millimeters. This is the standard size used for most beadwork projects. These are best used as spacers in beading designs.

5. Crimps measuring two millimeters by three millimeters are mostly used with two millimeter-by-two millimeter crimps. These crimps are a bit elongated, so they are best used for larger beads.

6. The largest crimps available measure three millimeters by three millimeters. These crimps are often called jumbo crimps because of their size. They pack a lot of strength, which is best for large and heavy beads. Large surface pliers are often used to press these crimps together.

Seasoned bead makers recommend not using gold-plated or silver-plated crimps because these crimps tend to chip under pressure. Over time, the base plating would crack and break, exposing the metal beneath. Crimps made from gold or sterling silver tend to have a softer composition, making these crimps easier to work with. Their composition makes it easier for the crimp to follow the form of the wire.

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Happy Beading,

-Tracy Miller

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