HNW - Edwardian beading

Carolyn Kayta Barrows kayta at
Thu Sep 24 12:07:57 PDT 1998

>>I had planned to 'cheat' and use that modern beading
>>thread everyone recommends.  Will that be any better than the cotton still
>>doing its job on the original?  
>I don't know too much about historic beading, but I do know that Modern
>beading thread is stronger and more durable when using 'sharp' beads like
>bugle beads.  It does not cut as easily.  If all you are using is glass seed
>beads that are rounded on the ends, cotton will work fine.  Modern beads are
>machine produced and many (especially bugle beads) are literally broken into
>the correct size which leaves very sharp edges.

That's why I decided to cheat.  Some of the beads on my original are
sharp-ended and look like half-length bugle beads, which I was able to
match with modern-made beads.  I was thinking about the wearing of my copy,
and how much fun repairing beadwork is(not).  Since you mention it, my
original seems not to have been worn much.  Maybe this is why the cotton
thread still holds, and why there are so many beads still in place.  
The rest of the beads on my original are nailheads and seed beads. The
larger nailheads are the ones I have been carefully collecting, by the ones
and twos, for so long.  I usually find them in the bottoms of cardboard
boxes which antique stores have been using for dumping random stuff in.
One day I managed to score several hanks of little nailheads, and then I
knew it was 'money where your mouth is' time.

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