Beaded Jewelry Making with Orphan Beads

  • Free beaded jewelry making ideas with your leftover beads.

    Make the most out of your inventory by learning how to make a necklace using pendants for jewelry making techniques and making bead jewelry techniques.

    Beaded Jewelry Making Ideas

    About a year into my jewelry making business I started to organize my beaded jewelry making materials by color.

    I had been trying to organize by type of material but was quickly running out of storage units when I thought to do it by color.

  • beaded jewelry making
  • Accidental Discovery

    One of the things that quickly became apparent was that I had a lot of little bags of leftover beads, or orphan beads. To save space in each color coded drawer, I began lumping all the orphan beads into one ziplock bag. Pretty soon, these bags started to look really attractive and inspired many new design ideas.

    Eventually, I started making bead mixes by color since I liked the idea so much!

    At first my designs were just random mixes of beads, but as I tried different ideas, I realized that there is a way to make random designs more coherent.

  • Design Tip:

    All you need to make a random beaded design more coherent is to use a small spacer of the same color and material.

    I've used everything from seed beads to 4mm semi-precious stones to Bali silver, as long as there is something consistent in your beaded jewelry making ideas, the design will work!

Jewelry Making Tools & Materials

  • The jewelry making materials used in this beaded necklace are:

    • 35mm top drilled mother of pearl flower pendant: $2.50
    • 8 4mm Swarovski bicones in pink satin: $.48
    • 2 4mm Swarovski rounds in pink: $.50
    • 8 5 X 7mm pink potato pearls: $.69
    • 6 4mm round rose quartz: $.15
    • 4 8mm faceted rose quartz: $.47
    • 4 6 X 10mm faceted rose quartz rondelles: $.59
    • 3 inches size 10 seed beads in color lined beige: $.03
    • 1 inch rose quartz chips: $.07
    • 2 3mm sterling silver balls: $.30
    • 2 6mm Bali bead caps: $1.60
    • 2 2 X 4mm double flower Bali silver spacers: $.96
    • 1 Sterling silver hook clasp: $3.00
    • 20 inches 49 strand .014mm stringing wire: $1.00
    • 3 2 X 2mm crimps:$.42

    Jewelry making tool: round nose pliers, chain nose pliers, crimping pliers.

Jewelry Crafting Instructions

  • Beaded Jewelry Making 1

    Sorting Your Mix

    Sort out your mix by taking out things you definitely won't be using

    For this beaded making project, I've taken out hot pink items.

  • Beaded Jewelry Making 2

    Beaded Pendant

    String 10 seed beads, then your flower pendant and another 10. Slide your 2 X 2 crimp over both stringing wires as shown.

    Your beaded pendant is ready to go!

  • Beaded Jewelry Making 3

    Crimping Tool

    Use your crimping pliers, form your initial crimp, making sure that you place the two wires on either side of the crescent.

    Finish the crimp off with the 2nd press, and gently smooth out with chain nose pliers.

  • Beaded Jewelry Making 4

    Separate the Wires

    Gently bend the two wires so that they lead out into a "V" shape.

    Now start transitioning out with a 3mm sterling silver ball and a 6mm Bali silver bead cap on both lines.

  • Beaded Jewelry Making 5

    Continue Beading Randomly

    But make sure you use the seed beads as spacers between each random bead!

    It's these tiny little spacers that actually hold random beaded designs together.

    You may also want to experiment with different sizes to see what suits your designs.

  • Beaded Jewelry Making 6

    Finish with Clasp

    When the necklace is long enough, slide in the double spacer to finish, but before crimping, curve your necklace in a circle shape, as if it were being worn, so you leave enough space for the beads to move.

    If you crimp the spring without doing this, you risk making an inflexible necklace.

    Pricing Jewelry

  • Congratulations, you've now completed the beaded jewelry making tutorial and are ready to figure out your pricing formulas. Here is your chance to see if you are charging enough for your beaded jewelry.

    Remember, pricing is done in two parts: wholesale price, THEN retail price.

    Cost of Materials

    Total cost of Jewelry Making Materials: $12.76

    Cost of Labor or Build Time

    Labor: 8 minutes @ $1 per minute = $8.00

    Total Labor: $8.00

    Wholesale Pricing Formula

    So using the wholesale pricing formula:

    1.15 X (Materials + Build Time + EDF + GP) + Profit  

    Wholesale Price =1.15 X ($12.76 + $8.00 + 0 + 0) + $6.00

    Since I just love beaded jewelry making, I won't be charging Genius Pay (GP) nor will I be charging emotional distress fee (EDF). The profit for making this beaded necklace will be $6.00.

    Wholesale price =: 1.15 X ($20.76) + $6.oo = $29.87

    Rounding up, the minimum wholesale price is $30.00

  • Retail Pricing Formula

    Retail prices will vary, depending on retailer. Here are some examples of the price points you would find this beaded necklace at in retail outlets:

    At retail, this beaded necklace would go for: $66-$75.00

    Higher end retailers will sell for: $120-$150.00

    Finding the Right Marketplace Balance

    Your local market might not be able to support these retail prices. If so, here are a few tips to finding the right price point:

    • Don't use semi-precious gemstones and pearls for this beaded necklace.
    • Go to thrift stores and flea markets and buy up old beaded necklaces to up-cycle. Sometimes you can even find cheap bags of broken costume jewelry you can take apart.
    • You might even want to try asking the manager at these thrift stores if they have bags of broken jewelry you could have or buy for little money.
    • Use lesser expensive metal findings.

  • More Beaded Jewelry Making Ideas

  • Auspicious Necklace
    Auspicious Necklace
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    Smiling Buddha Necklace
  • Burgandy Coin Pearl Necklace
    Coin Pearl Necklace
  • Upcycled Found Necklace
    Upcycled Necklace
  • Geode Lariat Necklace
    Geode Lariat Necklace
  • Modern Coin Pearl Necklace
    Modern Coin Pearls
  • DIY Vintage Necklace
    DIY Vintage Necklace
  • Business Tips & Techniques:

    jewelry making
    selling at craft fair
    selling handmade jewelry online
  • Likes, Pluses, and Comments!

      Jewelry Business Ideas


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