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  1. #1

    Question A thicker thread or multiple thin ones?

    Is one way better than the other in terms of carrying weight, stretching, aesthetics or any other reasons? Thanks.

  2. #2
    Pearl Scholar Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pattye's Avatar
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    Hi lhwy and welcome,

    Hard to answer, each of us who strings pearls probably has a preference. But type of thread used probably makes more difference in how much stretching there is over time. Silk will eventually stretch, more quickly with heavier pearls. Synthetics, such as power pro, not so likely to stretch. Some knot more loosely than others, too; technique makes a difference.

    I mostly work with 2 threads, but occasionally 4, to coordinate the pearl hole size with the color that best matches. Also sometimes use Griffin Brand, the single silk cord with needle attached.

    Are you new to knotting? What kinds of projects are you working on?
    Last edited by pattye; 05-07-2012 at 04:44 PM.
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  3. #3

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    Yes, this is the first time I'm stringing my own pearls. I've been given about 80 inches of pearls by a person who farms pearls, so I thought I might have a go at it myself. I'm planning to use Griffin silk, as that's all I can find. I'm a bit worried about the stretching part since I'm planning to make it 36 inches, but they are only 6mm, so I think they might be fine on silk?

  4. #4
    purveyor of pearls Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pearlescence's Avatar
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    Hi
    We use the silk cord with needle all the time and have had no problems . Usually I would use a size 4 for any but the smallest pearls (and a synthetic silk with needle for the really big ones or bracelets which get heavier wear)
    When you say you have 80 inches and are planning to make it 36 inches I'm not following - do you mean a two or three strand necklace?
    If you're worried about stretching you can hang the silk up to stretch it out before use, we used to but it didn't seem to make much difference, so now we don't bother.

  5. #5
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert CLICLASP's Avatar
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    That's a pretty good concern.
    I came to the conclusion that what it's important whether to choose 1 single or multi threads is mainly (not only, but...) a question of how big you wan the knots.
    Besides, when it is a question of big beadstones (but not for pearls), I happen to mix silk and steel wire in one stringing.
    A photo will prevent me from writing too much bad english, it is about letting customers choose stringing with visible or invisible knots:
    and I strung the invisible knots with multi thin threads,
    and visible knots for thicker thread.
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    Last edited by CLICLASP; 05-07-2012 at 05:10 PM. Reason: english
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  6. #6
    Pearl Scholar Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pattye's Avatar
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    Wow, Anna, that's a revelation! Silk and wire together!! A great idea, thank you so much! I have thought of mixing silk and synthetic, but not wire and silk. That you change the size of the knots at the customers' request, that is fascinating, too! Your English is just fine, so please don't be shy~
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  7. #7

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    I'm planing to make 2 endless strands of 30 and 36 inches, and leave the rest until something comes to mind,

    Thanks Cliclasp, that's very helpful. I think I'd like my knots to be as invisible as they can. But if the knots are too small, is there a danger of the strand being too stiff?

    Would mixing silk and synthetic make the knotting harder, since they have different flexibility?

    I've seen some videos and also read in some of the posts here, that people pass the strung pearls instead of the thread through the loop. My understanding for this is to prevent tangling. What I don't understand is that when they are say, down to their last few pearls, they still pass the long part with strung pearls through the loop instead of some few inches of silk. What's the reason behind this?
    Last edited by lhwy; 05-08-2012 at 10:00 AM.

  8. #8
    Rare Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Caitlin's Avatar
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    The reason behind putting the strung pearls through the loop to the end is to keep all the knots going in the same direction. Some thread will get fuzzy when knotted the other direction in the middle. I have switched it out before, but it just isn't as Zen as keeping knotting in the same direction. I naturally do a kind of transfer of thread from left to right during the pass through when the string gets to be more than a dozen pearls or so. I have seen other people so it. I think Hisano did in her class last year. It is a very natural move, let your hands do it;don't over think it.

  9. #9
    Third-graft Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Marianne's Avatar
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    When using beading wire and silk together, I have strung the beads on the wire first, then gone through each pearl with the silk and tied a half hitch around the wire. This gives a space and the illusion of a small knot. Strong, but not as supple as silk or cord alone. Good luck

  10. #10
    Perpetual Pearl Student Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert lisa c's Avatar
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    When I was was doing a knotting patch on a stretch where the strand had snapped, I found that knotting in the opposite direction to knots I'd already done made a permanent kink.

    Also, an argument for restringing a whole necklace, not just patching it up - the silk just broke again, in a different spot. Probably would've been obvious to anyone experienced that this would happen.

  11. #11

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    If the break wasn't due to a cut or some sort of accident, then I'd say it's probably a good idea to string the entire strand again since the whole strand would've experienced the same degree of wear and tear.

    I am now trying to string on two threads, sometimes I would pull one of the threads and miss the other. I think I'll stick to one in the future, or try the "cheating method".

  12. #12
    purveyor of pearls Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pearlescence's Avatar
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    The single cord we use seems to sork pretty well and consistantly. We guarantee everything for a year and so far nothing has come back due to broken silk. That suits me fine. (dept of 'if system not broken fix not)

  13. #13
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    Question for anyone who strung/knotted Jeremy's exotics from 2008 on silk: what size silk did you use?

    I needed to restring my 8-9mm round exotics. These pearls have small holes! I preferred to use 2 threads and pull them apart to seat the knot, but all I could find locally was Griffin silk cord on the card, with attached wire. I bought Light Pink.

    I tried size 3 (.50mm) but it would not pass through the end pearl twice, and I really didn't want to ream them out to widen the hole-- not these pearls! I am not taking chances on damaging them. So I went down to Griffin size 2 (.45mm), and that was okay for most of the pearls, but a few knots were slipping onto the drill hole and I had to double knot. There is not so great a difference between .45 and .50 but enough that neither size thread was quite right.

    Normally when using a single thread, I use tweezers to seat the knot tightly against the pearl. But this time the tweezers were cutting through the thin silk thread, and I had to start over. So I switched to using a needle to anchor the knot in the manner shown in Wendy's "Knotting Pearls" YouTube video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hb5_xrWli_g) but no matter how I tried, the knots were still a bit loose when the necklace was done.

    I'm at a loss for what to do next. I keep reading or hearing on videos that the most common size to use is Size E (.325mm) doubled, but that seems like it would be way too thick.

    I found a source for silk on spools but size B (.203mm) doubled would be .406mm, (thinner than size 2 Griffin, so not thick enough to prevent knots from slipping into the drill holes) while size C would be .548 doubled-- too thick!

    I must be missing something terribly obvious. Help?

  14. #14
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert KarinK's Avatar
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    Hi,

    I don't knot a lot so I always use the Griffin cards. Almost all the time I use a #1 with a #2. It works for all my pearls except the itty-bitty akoya kechis.

    - Karin

  15. #15
    Third-graft Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Marianne's Avatar
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    Hi Pearl Dreams, I feel for you as it is totally frustrating when you can't find the right thread. I think that the carded Griffin is a two ply and it seems to nick and snag much easier than the 3 ply Gudebrod silk. Unfortunately that company went out of business. Big Stone http://www.bigstoneinc.com/Big-Stone...030.html/page2 is carrying their own brand which should be similar to the Gudebrod. (I have not tried it yet, but plan on ordering in the future.) The E weight should work well with an 0.6-0.7 drill hole. Good luck!

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