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  1. #1
    First-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member danachit's Avatar
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    Default What on Earth Did I Do Wrong?

    Well hello all!

    I have been absent for years, that's right...YEARS! I went to ministry school, then graduate school, got a job teaching finance to the dept of defense, then took over the lives of both of my elderly parents.

    Pearls became a lost thought. THEN!! Last night, I awoke at 2am and suddenly remembered I had a double choker strand I paid big bucks for, that I had knotted .... and the final last knot 3-4 pearls in came UNDONE! and I never reknotted it. (and I also wondered if they still made packaged lady fingers ) I just looked at it one day and there was this gap of string sitting there mocking me. What the heck!?

    I have knotted a gazillion pearl necklaces. I use doubled stretched silk, a Tri cord knotter, G-S hypo cement on the final last bit to add security and I tighten down all the knots.

    I'm sitting here with a pile of these gorgeous fat white pearls ready to redo it all, and I'm a little nervous because I don't know what went wrong the first time around.

    Is there a wrong way to make an overhand knot?

    Did the glue fail?

    Have you ever had this happen and figured out what went wrong?

    Taking a deep breath about to dive in. Ugh...
    Ginger Rogers did the exact same thing as Fred Astaire, only she did it backwards and in heels!

  2. #2
    Rare Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert BWeaves's Avatar
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    Give up on the silk and get Beader's Secret and some big eye needles from our own Pattye on Etsy. I've had silk knot in the wrong place, and also come undone when I don't want it to, and not come undone when I need it to.

    I never have these problems with Beader's Secret. Also, I don't need a Tri-cord-knotter with Beader's Secret. Just use a doubled thread, and overhand knot, and pull the two threads apart to snug the knot up against the pearl.

    Check out the Lowly Beader's Club forum threads for how to's on how to finish your strand so the knots don't come undone. Personally, I skip knotting the last 3 pearls, but go through them with the thread. I go around the clasp, and then back through each pearl and knot the last two knots over the running thread that's already there. Then I bury the end in the 3rd pearl and snip it off. No glue.

  3. #3
    First-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member danachit's Avatar
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    Default

    Thank you!
    I've always used stretched, waxed silk. I'm willing to use something else even though it feels....wrong...LOL. Do you know how Beader's secret compares to STRINGTH bead cord? I have a good bit of that already and I want to get started.
    Ginger Rogers did the exact same thing as Fred Astaire, only she did it backwards and in heels!

  4. #4
    purveyor of pearls Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pearlescence's Avatar
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    If you can post a photo of the end we might be able to figure where it went wrong.

  5. #5
    Rare Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert BWeaves's Avatar
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    I don't know anything about Stringth.

    I do know that I threw out all my silk and replaced it with Beader's Secret. At $3.50 for 20 yards, it's worth replacing something that doesn't work with something that does. I have had nothing but good experiences knotting pearls with Beader's Secret, whereas I used to swear up a storm with silk.

    Disclaimer: Pattye is not paying me to say nice things. I truly believe it's the best product out there for stringing pearls. And I've NEVER had the ends come undone, ever.

  6. #6
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    I go through the last 4 pearls without knotting, back-knot through the last 3 and pass the needle through the 4th and then cut the thread, to hide the tail. I don't use glue.

    I use Beaders Secret and highly recommend it for all the reasons BWeaves gave. I just bought Stringth from Rio just to try it so I could post about it on my stringing tutorial (which badly needs updating now that virtually no one uses Power Pro or tweezers), but have not used it yet. Someone on here (Narcissa?) said it is stiffer than Beader's Secret. Perhaps drapes less nicely.

    You know what, I'll knot something up today just to try the Stringth so I can report back.

  7. #7
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    Okay, I made 3 mini strands with some junky large FWP using #3 Stringth, heavy Beader's Secret and regular Beaders Secret.

    The Stringth was the middle size offered by Rio so I thought it would be an average thickness, but it is way too thick and stiff for even these large pearls. It is stiffer, rougher and a little thicker than 50# Power Pro! And not at all silky feeling like Beaders Secret. And it comes in fewer colors (but more colors than the #1 size.) Beader's Secret comes in a wider array of colors, and more of the subtle colors we use with pearls. BS is the winner when it comes to color.

    Also, when I tried to seat knots by pulling threads apart, a knot formed where I didn't want it and would not budge. This does not happen with BS.

    I might try ordering #1 Stringth with my next Rio order, just to know what it is like. I can't see using the #3 Stringth for anything other than making rustic station necklaces, or necklaces with other kinds of beads with large holes-- and it might be nice for that. It is certainly strong.

    From top to bottom, #3 Stringth, then heavy BS, then regular BS.
    Name:  Stringth top, heavy BS middle, regular BS bottom.jpg
Views: 189
Size:  71.6 KB

    Now for drape. Granted these are only a few pearls knotted, but I think you can see the difference between the threads.
    #3 Stringth

    Name:  #3 size Stringth.jpg
Views: 195
Size:  43.0 KB

    Heavy Beader's Secret

    Name:  heavy BS.jpg
Views: 196
Size:  43.7 KB

    Regular Beaders Secret

    Name:  regular BS.jpg
Views: 193
Size:  41.7 KB
    Last edited by Pearl Dreams; 08-16-2018 at 03:16 AM. Reason: typo

  8. #8
    Rare Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert BWeaves's Avatar
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    Beader's Secret for the win!!!

  9. #9
    Perpetual Pearl Student Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert lisa c's Avatar
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    You're a welcome sight for folks have missed you! You have been busy for sure.

  10. #10
    First-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member danachit's Avatar
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    Awww Lisa C.

    Thank yall SO MUCH! Man, I wish I had some of that beader's secret! I have always used silk because I am a purist. What about the fancy folks? (Jeremy?) Are they still using stretched/waxed silk? Or have the big boys also sought out alternatives?

    I starting knotting on #1 Stringth and so far so good. I'm making a double strand choker, base of my neck, necklace but not sure how many more pearls to put on the outer strand. Any takers on this one?
    Ginger Rogers did the exact same thing as Fred Astaire, only she did it backwards and in heels!

  11. #11
    purveyor of pearls Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pearlescence's Avatar
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    I usually put a dab of glue on that tail through the final pearl. We found that when the silk started to stretch the pearl would 'walk' up and down its section of silk and the loose end wiggle its way out. Since we guarantee for a year we were finding some well-worn strands were coming back. None since.
    We use silk for most work. But synthetic for larger pearls which - again - would stretch.

  12. #12
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by danachit View Post
    ... I'm making a double strand choker, base of my neck, necklace but not sure how many more pearls to put on the outer strand. Any takers on this one?
    Try making the outer strand 1" longer than the inner strand, however many pearls that requires. If the number isn't exact, go longer, not shorter.

  13. #13
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pearlescence View Post
    I usually put a dab of glue on that tail through the final pearl. We found that when the silk started to stretch the pearl would 'walk' up and down its section of silk and the loose end wiggle its way out. Since we guarantee for a year we were finding some well-worn strands were coming back. None since.
    We use silk for most work. But synthetic for larger pearls which - again - would stretch.

    I haven't had the tail work its way out yet with Beaders Secret, but time will tell.

  14. #14
    Rare Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert BWeaves's Avatar
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    I haven't had the tail work out of Beader's Secret, either. I haven't had Beader's Secret stretch on me, either.

  15. #15
    Museum Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert JerseyPearl's Avatar
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    I have yet to find a product as good as Beader's Secret!
    Etsy shop: OceansCove
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