Understanding beads

Views 1 Like Comments Comment
Like if this Guide is helpful

Shopping for some beads can be rather baffling when you are new and don't quite understand the terminology.
So here is an explanation  and a few pictures for everyone.


Lampworking is a type of glasswork that uses a gas fueled torch to melt rods and tubes of clear and colored glass. Once in a molten state, the glass is formed by blowing and shaping with a variety of tools and hand movements.

  Lampwork Beads

Wedding cake beads >> Made famous in Venice. They are a type of lampwork bead   


Pronounced - k - l - woss - onay

Cloisonné is the art of applying enamels of all colors to the surface of a metal object, which is then fired to become a beautiful work of art. This technique reached its perfection as a result of the efforts of Chinese artisans. Chinese cloisonné is now the standard by which the quality and beauty of cloisonné is measured worldwide.

Source :  Ken Jiang - Sinosorce International

All Cloisonné beads are hand made     


The most famous Venetian beads are the Millefiori, which translated
from Italian is "thousand flowers". Each bead is handmade under
the flame, using world famous Murano glass canes or rods.

Murano Glass

Murrine are slender rods or canes of multicolored glass. Slices of Murrine fused together are often called "millefiore" or "thousand flowers", which derives from the variety of floral patterns and geometric shapes that are present within the glass rod.
To create a pendant, a glass rod is covered with layers of different colored glass to create an intricate design, and heated in the furnace so the layers fuse together. The rod is then re-heated and pulled to become very thin but still maintain the perfect cross section of the original design. Once the rod cools off, it is cut into small discs. These tiny sections of various canes or "millefiori" are cut and patiently and artistically placed into metal rings of different shapes and sizes.



Dichroic Glass

Dichroic means two colors. When this glass is viewed from different angles, it appears as numerous colors.

The word "dichroic" is pronounced Dye-Cro-Ick. The name comes from two Greek roots, "di" for two and "chroma" for color. Therefore dichroic

literally means two-colored. It can split a beam of light into two beams with differing wavelengths. This glass appears to be different

colors when viewed from different angles or in varying degrees of illumination

MOP Beads

You see this everywhere. Well what are "Mop" beads???
Mop stands for   MOTHER OF PEARL... 

Definitions of 'mother-of-pearl' (mŭTH́ər-əv-pûrĺ)
The pearly internal layer of certain mollusk shells, used to make decorative objects. Also called nacre.

Nacre , also known as mother of pearl , is an organic-inorganic composite material produced by some mollusks . It is strong, resilient, and

iridescent . Pearls and the inside layer of the pearl oyster shells and the freshwater pearl mussel shells and abalone are made of nacre.



A mineral composition of aluminium & copper which produces the  blue or green / blue colour.

Turquoise has been used and coveted since before 4000 BC. It can be pure in color or may contain secondary minerals or even matrix. If the

matrix forms a pattern of interlocking polygons it is sometimes called "spider-web" turquoise.

The associate minerals often make the original local easy to pin-point. The very best material still comes from Iran today. It has a one of

the highest values of opaque gemstones and is second only to a few varieties of jade and the highest quality lapis.

It was used in much of the early American Indian jewelry and was often mixed with red-coral, pink-coral, or malachite. Today it is often

found in intarsia with lapis, sugilite, and even opal.

A chalky variety is sometimes pressure treated with a plastic-polymer to make "stabilized" turquoise. It is worth far less than the

non-stabilized material.

Source : the image


Jade is an ornamental stone. The term jade is applied to two different rocks that are made up of different silicate minerals. Nephrite jade

consists of the calcium- and magnesium-rich amphibole mineral actinolite (aggregates of which also make up one form of asbestos). The rock

called jadeitite consists almost entirely of jadeite, a sodium- and aluminium-rich pyroxene. The trade name Jadite is sometimes applied to

translucent/opaque green glass.

Jade comes in various colours:

GREEN :  Most popular and most expensive.
LAVENDER : Very dark or very light purple.
RED : From lemon / yellow - beige - orange - brown. Not solid colours.

PURE RED is jade that has been heat treated.
YELLOW : the most affordable jade.
WHITE : The purest. Chalky , opaque, translucent , grey or white.
BLACK : is usually nephrite and is glassy black.
ANY PINK jade you see is usually ROSE QUARTZ - not jade.


Has a natural healing power.
It has been known to cure many illnesses and even sprains and broken bones. Some elderlie people wear RED CORAL to provide warmth during the

winter months.
Wearing a RED CORAL necklace will make the area warm and will eventually become hot. This is a characteristic of the GENUINE RED CORAL and is

said to "not happen" with fake, synthetic or plactic varieties.

RED CORAL can come from India or Asia, but mainly comes from the Mediterranean Sea and off the coast of Japan.

Natural / Pure Red Coral will be expensive to purchase.



I hope this has been helpful.

If it has been helpful please click the button below and vote....Thankyou for taking the time to read this.


Have something to share, create your own Guide... Write a Guide
Explore more Guides