The Broken Bead Necklace

If a bead necklace falls apart, - it does happen and always unexpected - , try to gather as much of the beads as possible, the Tiny Little Beads too! And take your time. If you want the necklace to be restrung you will need them. A necklace which will be shorter than before due to lack of material can become a problem necklace because of failing design or just being too short. Than there has to be improvised, which is often not beautiful, sometimes even impossible.
To pick up the tiny little beads can be difficult and do not use tweezers, they will flip them around. Very helpful are wooden toothpicks, have at least one in your purse and not only for your teeth. If you wet them a little bit they will easily pick up very small beads due to the force of cohesion which in this case is stronger than gravity.

Notorious are the necklaces strung on plastic fishing line, clear nylon filament, which is most often used nowadays. It ages and cracks over time and will have a "life of its own" especially when light weighted beads are used. Breaks the line than it will open widely and will disperse the beads all around.

Do not wear a necklace when you want to cuddle a baby, because little lovely baby hands are stronger than your necklace, irrespective of the materials used. Those beautiful colorful gleaming little balls around your neck are most attractive!

There always has been a tendency to take apart outdated necklaces and other jewelry and re-use their materials in a more modern form. Recycling we call it today. This is especially true for the more valuable jewelry. As more valuable the materials, like gold and precious stones, as less the chance the jewelry will survive. Jewelry and beads of gold have only survived when safely buried because the metal lends itself to melting down and so the craftsman's work is sacrificed to immediate urgencies, like making coins of it. Buried in graves long before the arrival of the Conquistadors, some gold jewelry escaped destruction when the Spanish appropriated, exported, and melted down vast quantities of the gold work of Pre-Columbian civilizations.
But cheap jewelry too can be ripped apart: Most of the long Charleston necklaces of the Twenties of the twentieth century, even when made of simple glass beads, did not survive the Thirties, when short necklaces were the trend.
In general, I can not recommend this practice. Often a special way of stringing and combining the materials is specific for a given time period. This adds much to the value of the bead necklace than the value of its materials alone. Sometimes there is a come-back of a specific style and than it can be nice to wear an original one which may have belonged to your (grand)mother and has added sentimental value too.
In case you are the grandmother, than it is very worthwhile to keep your bead necklaces in perfect condition and not only for your own delight. Because, when your time has come, dirty broken necklaces will be thrown away by your granddaughters (after reading this guide I hope not). When your necklaces are clean and well strung, these young women will wear them with pleasure or at least keep them in their wardrobe drawers.

Another idea to cope with a sudden broken necklace:
Are you visiting an important social event and your bead necklace is the eye catcher of your outfit, put a reserve necklace in your handbag.

Bead necklace with broken press molded Czech glass beads after fall on floor, length 17'' 43cm.




© 2009 Tsipporah Sofer. All Rights Reserved
Bead Necklace