Using Leather Cord for Beading

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Pieces of jewelry that feature leather cords tend to have a rugged appearance. This is probably why leather cord necklaces or bracelets are commonly worn by men.
There are two variations of leather cords available today. Flat leather cords, often made of suede, are available in diameters of four to six millimeters. On the other hand, rounded leather cords are available in one to two-millimeter diameters. Synthetic and pure leather are available in most bead shops and both types are strong materials for beading.

Since leather cords have a larger diameter compared to nylon or wire, the type of beads strung on the cord must also have larger drill holes. Lamp work beads and beads made from wood, plastic, glass, and ceramic can be used, as long as the beads have drill holes that can accommodate the cord.

Finishing leather cords for beading

There are only a couple of ways to finish a beaded accessory made with a leather cord. The use of a clasp and special knotting are the two most widely used methods of finishing leather cord beaded accessories. To finish a leather cord with a clasp, a coil clasp is used. The coil clasp is secured at the end of the leather cord with the use of pliers. Folding the coil over secures the clasp to one end of the leather cord.

On the other hand, a fold over the clasp can be achievedsimply by pressing the clasp to wrap it around the leather cord. Long-nose pliers would be the best tool for this type of beadwork. For a simpler way of finishing the project, the ends of the leather cord can also be knotted. A special slip knot is the most popular method of knotting a leather cord. This type of knot allows the cord to be fullyadjustable. The knot makes it easier for the wearer to tighten the leather cord necklace of bracelet according to his preference.

The most apparent advantage of using a leather cord for beadwork is its incomparable durability. Bracelets or necklaces made from leather cord can be worn regularly, without the need to worry about damage to the jewelry. Leather cords are mostly used for beading large and heavy beads that require a reliable support material.

On the other hand, one downside of using leather cords is their tendency to soak up moisture. This results in the need to regularly wash leather bracelets or necklaces to keep these wearable.

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Happy Beading,

-Tracy Miller

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