Featured bead: washers

April 26, 2010

Washers may be a new term to some of you…but check out how useful these are!

Washer beads

Your basic washer bead

When you hear about washers in connection with jewelry making, it doesn’t usually mean those flat, round donuts of metal that the hardware store can sell you.

‘Washers’ usually means heishi beads. Rings & Things’ enjoyable Bead Shapes Glossary gives this definition:

heishi: a type of disk bead that is usually flat, but sometimes slightly puffed. Traditionally, this shape was achieved by drilling flat chips, stringing them and then grinding the strand against stone to gradually wear the edges into smooth, flat-edged circles. Pronounced hee-shee, this shape is also known as a wafer, wheel or spacer.

A couple of examples of washers…

Tim Holtz 'Idea-Ology' washer pack

Tim Holtz 'Idea-Ology' washer pack

Copper trade bead washers

Copper trade bead washers

So, now you’ll recognize a washer if you see one. (You could even use a Chinese coin, couldn’t you?)

Well now, what are these washers good for?

Cold connections! Riveted metal jewelry. Steampunk designs.

How do you use washers?

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1 Comment

  • Reply Erin Prais-Hintz April 26, 2010 at 9:42 pm

    I love washers of all sorts. I even love the hardware store ones!
    Pounding on copper washers is very satisfying.
    And I wouldn’t know what to do without my copper and brass trade bead washers.

    Thanks for sharing and reminding me that something that I take for granted can have a very big impact!

    Enjoy the day!

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