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The beading tools in you tool box contents differ, depending on what kind of beading you plan to do.
Off-loom beading: beading needles, extra-long beading needles, small scissors, thread conditioner (Thread Heaven or bees wax), plastic trays or small containers for holding beads that are in the process of being used, an emery board, and clear nail polish for sealing knots, a pair of needle-nose pliers (for pulling a needle through a tight bead) and wire cutters, in case you need to break a bead in the middle of your piece.
Jewelry Stringing (bracelets and necklaces): needle nosed pliers with a smooth (non-serrated) gripping surface, round nosed pliers, wire cutters (light duty), utility tweezers, bead design board (for laying out the design before stringing - and to determine finished length), crimping pliers (if using crimps with products such as Beadalon or Acculon). Optional tools that may be useful for certain types of jewelry: Split nosed pliers or tweezers (for holding split rings open just enough to slip findings onto them), a bead reamer (for filing rough edges inside of bead that may cut your stringing material) and a jump ring opener/closer (if you use lots of open jump rings in your designs).
Earring construction: needle nosed pliers with a smooth (non-serrated) gripping surface, round nosed pliers (for forming loops), wire cutters (light duty), utility tweezers (sometimes good for grasping small beads)
Wire wrap jewelry: needle nosed pliers with a smooth (non-serrated) gripping surface, round nosed pliers, wire cutters (may want to invest in flush cutting pliers), wire "jig" (for forming intricate shapes, loops and links), a coiling jig (for making well formed wire coils (spring shapes), fine diamond file (filing rough ends), nylon jaw pliers (to avoid marking wire)
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|