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  1. #316
    Museum Pearl Senior Pearl Expert JerseyPearl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    New Jersey, of course!


    Quote Originally Posted by Pearl Dreams View Post
    Here is my reasoning for using 5x the finished length of the necklace.

    1. Knots use up a lot of thread.
    Number of knots. The more knots you make, the more thread is needed. For a necklace of any given length, there will be more pearls if the pearls are small than if they are large. If you knot between each pearl, a necklace of small pearls will have more knots than a necklace of large pearls. So you'd need more thread, not less, if you knot between every pearl and the pearls are small.

    Type / size of knots. Jeweler's knots, being larger, use more thread than regular overhand knots. Sometimes I find I have to make a jeweler's knot when a pearl has a larger than usual drill hole, and a regular knot would slip into the drill hole. (To make a jeweler's knot, you pass the thread one more time through the loop before tightening the knot.)

    2. The "tail" of thread that you cut off after the initial back-knotting uses up about 3 inches of thread, also.

    3. It is harder to maneuver the needle when finishing up the strand if there is only a small amount of thread left. (Same goes for sewing; it's easier to make a final knot if there's around 6 inches of doubled thread left over, which is 12 inches not doubled.)

    4. Thread is cheap, and time is precious. It is a huge nuisance to run out of thread and have to start over.

    For all these reasons I err on the side of using more thread, even though it means throwing away a bit of thread when I'm done.
    Of course I agree with each number on this list...#4 is #1 in my book!
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  2. #317
    First-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member CricketBug's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2014


    Wonderful—your thread length explanations are so helpful! Thank you, Patteye, JP, Charlotta and PD!

    I purchased some wee 3 mm Akoya keshis (which are gorgeous!) from Cees, and am experimenting with leftover pieces of Beaders Secret as to which might look best—all knotted, or just every few pearls knotted, or just the beginning/ending knotted. Decisions!

  3. #318
    Museum Pearl Senior Pearl Expert
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    South Australia


    I don't care for the look of knotted small pearls... the darn knots just stand out . One possibility is to knot every few inches and hide the knot under a 3mm or 2.5mm gold bead. That way if it breaks you won't lose many.

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