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  1. #1
    First-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member
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    Default First strand from scratch - what I learned today

    Officially applying for club membership - I'm officially hooked!

    Background: Got my circled baroque Tahitians from Jac (Pearl House USA). I also received my Beader's Secret and other odds and ends from Pattye. I'd practiced knotting with some braided fishing line on an old strand using the cat's cradle method in Caitlin's video. Seemed straightforward enough ...

    SO: I started off - got 6 pearls in and had to start over. Repeat with varying lengths several more times. Then the cat involved himself. Start over again. 34 pearls into the project and the string broke I learned that you can't yank as hard on Beader's Secret as you can with fishing line.. Also, I was pulling the Beader's Secret apart after each knot to the point where I heard a satisfying "pop". NOT a good idea.

    This afternoon I re-grouped and went into "gentle touch" mode. I got all the pearls onto the string!!!! And even remembered to save the last 4 for clasp attachment!!!!!!! Knots are visible (used grape color) and there's definitely some wiggle room in places. But no visible sliding. Great excuse to re-string with maybe some creative flourishes! (I arranged these this time in a boring old graduated pattern.)

    So here's my beginner strand - 28 inches, 64 pearls 8mm - 10mm. Now I'm wondering whether to order a few more like these and extend it into a rope. Any and all suggestions from you masters are welcome

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  2. #2
    First-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member Lugana's Avatar
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    Default

    What a lovely "scratch"! I'm a tight knotter as well, I've learnt that it doesn't work on baroque pearls at all, like AT ALL
    Your knotting looks lovely and I like how you paired thread color with the pearls! Are those peacock circled from Jac? They look amazing)

  3. #3
    First-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member
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    Yes, they're the circled baroque peacock mix. Like little Christmas tree ornaments .

    Another thing I learned: As with knitting, keeping the tension constant and even is the key to not losing control when flipping back and forth between hands. Never lose control of your thread!

  4. #4
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    I like it! Why not wear it for a while and see if you like this length or whether you'd prefer it longer?

    I also broke Beader's Secret early on in my experience of knotting with it. For anyone who hasn't used it yet, I suggest before using it to make a strand, string on one pearl or bead and make a knot, trying to break it on purpose-- so your muscles learn how hard you can tug before it breaks.

  5. #5
    Rare Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    Your strand looks great!!! Good job!

    I've been knotting pearls for years, and I always take 3 tries before I get the tension right on a necklace. I invariably break the thread the first time from pulling too tight. There's a definitely knack to getting the tension "just right." With Beader's Secret, I find I get it right much more often than I did when I knotted with silk thread.

  6. #6
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Sanippy's Avatar
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    You did an amazing job and the pearls are gorgeous! The circled peacocks are my favourite of Jac's pearls!

  7. #7
    Museum Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert JerseyPearl's Avatar
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    Just beautiful! You really hit the ground running. I love the circled peacocks...they are among some of my favorites. Each pearl has such character!
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  8. #8
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Marianne's Avatar
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    Lovely job!!!

  9. #9
    Rare Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    Love the necklace..you did a great job ! We have all broken a string at some point. PD made an excellent suggestion about trying to break it on a practice pearl. You can be quite firm !

  10. #10
    Second-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member
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    Lovely knotting job, and beautiful circled T's!!
    Last year I bought a load of pastel T's from Jacques with the intent of knotting a rope. I'm emabarrased to say I ended up paying to have them knotted. But when I finally learn (hopefully this year), I hope my first try is as perfect as yours!

  11. #11
    Pearl Scholar Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pattye's Avatar
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    A big Woo Hoo & Congratulations for your successful first stringing adventure! Very nice pearls, too! Yes, always a good idea to test the break strength of any thread you are using. (I knot without tools, separate the 2 threads, then with increasing pressure tighten down the knot.) I broke threads in the beginning also.
    Pattye


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    SO MANY PEARLS, SO LITTLE TIME----

  12. #12
    Pearl Journalist Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert GemGeek's Avatar
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    A great length on you and beautiful, beautiful pearls! Good job.
    GemGeek
    The World Is My Oyster!

  13. #13
    Museum Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert JerseyPearl's Avatar
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    Broken thread means good luck! At least in my mind...good luck that it broke during stringing and not while wearing! I really cannot sing the praises of Beader's Secret enough...the variety of colors and thickness of threads will make any restring EASY PEASY!!!
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  14. #14
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert amti's Avatar
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    Whoohooo! Welcome to the club!!! It's a great feeling of accomplishment to make something so beautiful yourself, isn't it? Those are gorgeous and fun pearls and you're going to love looking at them. I agree with PD- see how you like the length before redoing it. You may like it layered with another one of your strands, or you may decide to lengthen it so you can admire it more. You can always make a bracelet with the same clasp and add it to your necklace so the strand becomes 36 inches or so! The possibilities are endless when you can tie your own knots! Oh, I've broken thread before too... I think we all have. It's a learning step that cannot be avoided.

  15. #15
    First-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member
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    Thank you, all, for the positive feedback. I am well and truly hooked! I'm really liking the length of the strand as I wore it all day today. I may add a couple of accent pearls, but it will stay roughly the length that it is now. Amti - GREAT idea for a bracelet/extension!

    I've ordered some larger-sized Beader's Secret to try since these knots are barely big enough to stop the holes and if I pull hard enough they disappear into them.

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