Bead Storage Tips

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What´s an easy way to store seed beads?

Flip Top Boxes

Flip Top boxes aren't just for Tic Tacs any more! They are also available in a variety of sizes for bead storage. They are the perfect solution for seed beads because they pour easily into your bead tray by simply opening the flip top. When it's time to put your beads away, just pull off the whole lid and use your favorite bead scoop to put them back in.

How can I organize my bead storage container in a way that will help me find my beads quickly and easily?

Color, Shape, and Size: Bead Storage Container Ideas

It's not enough to store your beads in containers if you will have trouble finding them. Here are some bead storage ideas to help bring order to your workroom and help you find those special beads easily and quickly.

Organize your beads by color, shape, and size. This will help you easily identify beads that you need before beginning a project and it helps save time if you change your mind on bead choices in the middle of a project. You can devote one bead storage container for certain colors, and another by shapes. One bead storage box may be for crystals while another box may be for glass beads. If you have a large bead storage box or case, then organize each case by color, shape, and size. As your collection grows you can store all of your beads in individual cases according to their colors, shapes, and sizes.

What can I use for a flip top bead storage container?

A Tic Tac Box Makes a Great Bead Storage Container

If you're looking for a convenient and inexpensive bead storage container, try a Tic Tac box. Tic Tac containers make a perfect bead storage box. They are perfect for storing Seed Beads as well as other small jewerly findings. Just carefully pry the top off and fill the box with all of your beads. The flip top makes them easy to pour as well. After saving your Tic Tac containers, you can fit them neatly in a bead storage case for easy access and portability.

What´s a good container for storing my beads?

My Favorite Storage Containers

My favorite storage containers are those multi-compartment plastic boxes. They come in a variety of sizes and some even have removable dividers, so you can choose the size of your compartments. You can store everything from seed beads to accent beads, findings, tubes, hanks, and plastic baggies.

What can I use for a stackable bead storage container?

Using Stackable Pill Jars For Bead Storage Containers

Stackable Pill Jars make great bead storage boxes. Pills are small in size, similar to beads, and these jars are great ideas for those who are looking for a bead storage container. They come multicolored, but clear plastic containers are also available. Stacking the jars makes them easy to store and you can even use the lids to sort through beads when working on projects.

What should I look for in a bead storage container?

Bead Storage Container Options

Bead storage can be made easy with the right bead container. Look for a bead storage container in small and medium sizes or in single or double configurations. A good bead storage container is clear and allows stacking of same-size caddies. They should come with labels for marking size, style, material or cost of the beads inside. Find a bead container where you can remove the cap and pour out beads from one section of the container while the other beads stay in their own compartments. You will only frustrate yourself and curb your creativity if you try digging beads out of a container with only one lid.

How can I make sure my bead storage container is spill proof?

Is Your Bead Storage Container Spill Proof?

It stands to reason that when you purchase a bead storage container you expect it to be spill proof, right? Well, unfortunately not every bead storage box is escapable of the occasional upset and subsequent “bead soup”. Before setting up your workplace put a couple of beads in one of your bead storage boxes and tip it over. This is very important to do with recycled bead storage containers as well. If the box stands up to the “shake down” then you know it is safe for more beads.

How can I take the labels off of jars that I would like to use as a bead storage box?

Recycling a Bead Storage Container: Removing Labels

There are lots of great containers that you can use to store beads in. Tic Tac boxes, empty pill bottles, and plastic jars of all shapes and sizes can double as the perfect bead storage container. However, taking the labels off of these jars may not be as simple as it sounds. Usually, the glue that holds the label in place is water soluble, but if you've tried hot water and still have a sticky residue on your bead storage box, then try one of these remedies.

Rubbing Alcohol

Baby Oil

Mineral Oil


Goo Gone

Simply apply any of the above substances and rub on the glue until it dissolves. Remember to wash the jar thoroughly after removing the glue before storing your beads.

I'm having trouble picking up small beads - is there an easier way?

Bead Storage Trays

Plastic bead storage trays are great for handling small beads, findings and other loose beading items. These trays have a triangular shape that allow you to slide a flat side along your work surface to easily pick up tiny beads. Once the beads are in the tray, you can easily pour them into a bag or other storage container because the triangular corners function as a scoop or funnel. They have a lightweight design is perfect for quick organization and great for displaying sample beads at bead or craft shows.

How can I keep my projects organized using a bead storage container?

Bead Storage Container: Organizing by Project

A great idea is to organize your projects by placing all of the needed equipment (beads, thread, needles, and patterns) into an individual bead storage container. You can easily make your own portable and spill proof bead storage containers by recycling your coffee cans. You can even tape a little picture of the finished project on the lid of the can, letting you know which project it contains.

How do I store my hanks of beads?

Storing Hanks of Beads

Tack a piece of wire mesh fencing or hardware cloth to two 1X2's, cut to the width of the fencing. Add shower curtain hooks and you have a great place to hang hanks or other strung beads.

How can I create a bead storage container suitable for my workspace?

Handyman's Helper: A Hanging Bead Storage Container

Do you have excess baby food jars on hand and need help organizing your workspace? If so, here is a handyman's trick that can make your beading life simpler and easier. You will need:

Baby food jars

Small Nails

Wood to affix the jar lids to (plywood, small block of wood, even the underside of your workspace cabinets)

Nail the jar lids to the wood with the underside of the lid facing front. Now you can fill the jars with beads and attach them to the lids by screwing them back on. When you want to use the jar, simply unscrew it from its securely affixed top. This saves space, is easy to make, and is a great way to make a bead storage container system that fits your own personal workspace.

Can a clear bead storage container help my creativity?

A Clear Bead Storage Container can Provide Creative Inspiration!

Whether you are a master bead worker or just starting out, you will discover that your choice of bead storage container can affect your creativity. By choosing clear plastic containers for bead storage, you can easily view the different beads in your storage boxes. This is an excellent way to develop creative inspiration. Some designers will move their bead storage containers in different color patterns to derive their motivation for new projects. You may also discover that just one bead will capture your attention and become the central focal point for your next masterpiece!

How can I transport my ceramic trays without breaking them?

Transporting Your Ceramic Trays

Here's a tip I learned many years ago when I took a class from Virginia Blakelock, author of Those Bad, Bad Beads: Try a pistol case (turn the foam pieces inside over so you have two flat surfaces) for transporting ceramic trays and you don't have to put away your beads! Just cover the tray with a piece of aluminum foil, put the tray in the case, close the lid and you're ready to go!

How can I keep my beads together while working on a project?

Stacking Plastic Containers for Projects

These come about six to a package and are available in most craft stores. They are relatively inexpensive and are great for keeping beads together for a project. Be very careful to screw them together tightly and check the threading often. If they get knocked to the ground and they are not tightly sealed, you will have beads everywhere.

How do I organize my beads so that I can find what I'm looking for?"

Keeping Your Beads Organized: Bead Storage Jars

If you are a beginner at bead jewelry making, you already know that your bead collection can get out of control quickly. Every bead artist needs storage for beads. Stacking bead storage jars are popular since each section has both a container and a lid for the section below it. You can reorganize your beads without taking them out of their bead storage container. Bead containers usually come in various sizes (for different bead sizes) and are made of sturdy, clear, high-impact plastic. Since you can easily see the contents, these storage containers are ideal. You can label if you need to, but just by being able to see what you have, you are already ahead of the game!

What makes a durable bead storage container?

His Tackle Box: A Fantastic Bead Storage Container

Think your hubby spends too much time fishing? How about raiding his tackle box! A tackle box makes an excellent bead storage container. It is full of nifty little compartments that were designed for holding small objects. You'll be able to store many different sized beads as well as thread, needles, and beading scissors all in various sized drawers. You can choose from one simple tackle box, or from a tackle pack that you can use to hold more than one tray. This makes an excellent bead storage box. They are also durable and travel proof. But here's a secret: make sure you confiscate it before he takes it to the lake.

My beads try to jump out of my plastic storage container when I open it. How can I get the beads out without making a mess?

Bead Storage Tip

A tip for the bead jewelry enthusiast using plastic bags as a bead container: A plastic bag makes a good bead storage container, but have your beads every tried to jump out when you open the bag? If you blow lightly into the bead container bag, moisture from your breath will make those jumpers calm down enough for you to pour them out. By controlling the velocity and the number of beads coming out, your beads won't get out of control.

How can I have an area to do beadwork with limited space and money?

Beadworking Center on a Budget

Are you short on space and money, but still want to have a place to store your beads and work on your beading projects? By watching for sales and frequenting thrift stores, you can put together a wonderful beading center.

One method of storing beads is simply using small zip lock bags or bead storage bags and then organizing them in a shallow box or tray. The 2"x2" size is a handy one for most smaller beads. Depending on where you buy your beads, you may get bags of this size when you make your purchase - or you can buy a hundred new bags for a couple dollars.

The hardware store can be a good source for a storage container. Try one of those racks with the little plastic drawers - or a fishing tackle box. Most have compartments that are great for lining up the 2" ziplocks.

If you use small seed beads (6/0 and smaller) you may want to use the tiny plastic tubes or vials for storage instead. They improve your ability to pour the beads out and funnel them back into the container.

Some of my beads come in teeny zip lock bags - where can I find various sizes of new ones?

The Benefits of Plastic Bead Storage Bags

There are many benefits bead storage in plastic storage bags. For example, bead storage can be made easy if you create a filing system by lining up your small plastic bags in divided storage drawers. Mark your bags with a Sharpie. Bags also come in a huge range of sizes: 2x2", 2x3", 3x3", etc. Bags are also easy to find (available online) and pretty inexpensive. They are helpful for bead storage and for separating findings and other beading supplies. Plastic bags keep beads and other items clean and organized. For example, sterling silver doesn't tarnish as quickly when sealed away from air inside a Zip lock bag. Bags are lightweight and pliable--great for packing. Plastic bags are even a great place to put finished jewelry for shipping.

What type of container is best for small bead storage?

Small Bead Storage

Do you have a lot of stock small beads, like seed beads in your collection? Are you sick of trying to keep track of them in plastic bags or some other quick organizational fix? One slick method is a bead container called a tri-tube. A tri-tube is a small, clear plastic tube bead container with a plug lid. You can easily see what's inside, can dispense just a few beads at a time, and the triangular shape makes it impossible for the tube to roll away like a round tube can. Eyepins and headpins work perfectly in this bead storage container and the tubes prevent pins from getting bent. These bead storage tubes can stand upright or be stacked in a small box.

Where can I find portable cases to take my beadwork with me?

Light Weight Carrying Cases

For durable, lightweight and portable containers, visit your local sporting goods or fishing tackle store. Tackle boxes come in a variety of shapes and sizes and are relatively inexpensive. You could even have one for each project!

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Guru Spotlight
Barbara Gibson