Category: Jewellery Information

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Cleaning & Caring Series

Jewellery, Stones & Organic Beads

This is an index of posts, and I'll update it as I add more.

I hope you enjoyed this post!

I would love you to bookmark it for the future, or even better, share it!

I have a fabulous range of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces currently available in my online store or you can contact me to arrange a custom made piece – just for you.

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Become an Insider

Are you looking for beautiful, beaded jewellery which has been designed and crafted 
with care & attention, by an award-winning artisan?

Do you have an interest in Metaphysics and the benefits of Gemstones, Colours.
Would you like to know which Stones or Colours may assist your well-being?

Why Should I Join?

Gain special access to new designs and Members only events.

As an “Insiders Club” member, you’ll have first access to beautiful and exclusive OOAK jewellery designs you know you wont see anywhere else.

All my designs are handmade by me in my studio in Bibra Lake, Western Australia. Other than custom orders, each design is one-of-a-kind (OOAK) so you can be confident knowing you are the proud owner of an original design.

I offer fast, friendly customer service where you will be treated as an individual. Delighting customers and building a base of trust are priorities of my business so I offer efficient service, well-crafted designs and a 12-month guarantee. So, sit back and relax and let me spoil you!

You get all this - and more

Welcome

Delight yourself or someone you love!

Hello! Welcome to the MaxineFaye’s “Insider’s Club”!

As a member you receive sneak peeks of upcoming designs and find out what goes on behind the scenes.

You will have first access to purchase new designs and Exclusive Member Only Sales and Giveaways!

I'm looking forward to spoiling you as an Insider.

Share with your friends who will love being an Insider too.

The stitched rope section of this bracelet is quite firm and holds its shape beautifully. A spiral of beads creates a wonderful pattern
The feature of this necklace is a mix of lamp-work glass beads featuring spots or raised bumps in a combination of white, blue, yellow and pale tea

I have a fabulous range of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces currently available in my online store or you can contact me to arrange a custom made piece – just for you.

Join the mailing list to be the first to shop new jewelry designs and exclusive sales!
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The Education Hub

Welcome to the Education Hub

Where I share heaps of handy hints and tips.

  • How to clean and care for your jewellery – different metals, gemstones and other beads.
  • Learn some of the jargon and words used in the beading industry.
  • You can find what the correct length of necklace or bracelet to suit your needs and how to measure for a custom-made design.
  • See the designs that have won awards and find out more about them.
  • Find out more on the various services I offer – Custom-made creations, repairs, remodelling, gift wrapping and classes.
  • Birthstones and Anniversary gift ideas.
  • Discover interesting attributes about your favourite gemstones.
  • Understand how colour may affect your mood.
  • And much more.

Click on the following links to find the posts of interest

These links will take you to the relevant post in The Education Hub, once they have been uploaded.
In the meantime, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me

If you found this page interesting

be sure to bookmark it for the future, or even better, share it!

I have a fabulous range of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces currently available in my online store or you can contact me to arrange a custom made piece – just for you.

 

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Care for your turquoise jewellery stones

Cleaning & Caring: Turquoise

Natural Turquoise is a porous stone so please treat with care

Natural Turquoise is a phosphate mineral with a MOHS hardness which ranges from 4.5 to 6 and as such is easily damaged by hair and body cosmetics, even the oils from the skin can damage the stones surface.  To protect your turquoise, it is recommended you put your jewellery on after applying makeup, sunscreen or perfume, and never wear it in the shower, bath or swimming pool

Heat and sunlight can cause Natural Turquoise to discolour or dehydrate.  This is not a stone to be worn on a day at the beach.

Natural turquoise has no artificial changes made to the gem.  It is just cut and polished.  Only high-quality turquoise can be used in its natural state.  As you will see, most of what is sold as Turquoise may not be natural or even Turquoise.

The colour of the stone may change gradually as body oils and other sources of moisture are absorbed into the stones, creating a lovely patina.

The colour of natural Turquoise can range from a vibrant blue to a green to brownish green with the webbing being black, brown, yellow or a host of other colours.

Stabilized or Enhanced Turquoise?

Most of the Turquoise found on today’s market has been treated or enhanced in some way which makes the stone more readily available to a wider customer base, otherwise it would generally be too expensive for most shoppers.

Stabilized Turquoise has an epoxy resin or similar infused into the pores of the stone. It’s no longer porous after treatment and will no longer discolour.

Stabilization allows the use of poorer-quality Turquoise that might otherwise not be suitable for jewellery.

Some dealers provide Turquoise in varying colours to the jewellery industry but be aware that much of this Turquoise has been dyed or manipulated in other ways or may not be Turquoise at all.

Dyed Howlite?

It is thought that approximately 90% of Turquoise on the market today is actually dyed Howlite or Magnesite.  Howlite is an absorbent white mineral that can be dyed in almost any colour imaginable. It has a natural webbing or matrix which is almost identical to the webbing in natural Turquoise. Since this webbing is basically impossible to manufacture it is easier to use an existing mineral that has the same properties.   Magnesite is another soft, porous stone with similar natural veining to that of Turquoise. Magnesite can be found in a small variety of colours naturally but is mostly a milky white colour. The porousness of this stone makes it ideal for taking on dyes to imitate Turquoise.

There is nothing wrong with this if the customer is aware of what they are gettingLike all things with gemstones and fraudsters, it is far more profitable to sell something that looks like Turquoise than the actual stone.

Howlite is a softer stone with a MOHS hardness of about 3.5 while Magnesite ranges from 3.5 – 4.5 and this is one way to distinguish the difference from Turquoise.  Another way is to see if the stone has been dyed by wiping a small section with a cotton bud dipped in nail polish remover. 

Even though it is disappointing if you find that you have been duped, both Howlite and Magnesite have interesting Metaphysical Properties.

Storage & Cleaning

Store your natural turquoise in a dark place away from harder stones or settings which may damage the stone.  Keep turquoise away from high heat and chemicals such as oils, perfumes, and household cleaners. Even stabilized turquoise can be affected by a constant bombardment of chemicals. 

Clean your turquoise in warm water with the addition of a gentle soap if needed.  Do not leave it to soak in water and dry it immediately with a soft cloth. Turquoise is a porous gemstone that absorbs liquid. 

Avoid using commercial jewellery cleaning liquids and never use steam or ultrasonic cleaners.

I hope you found this page helpful.

I would love you to bookmark it for the future, or even better, share it!

My range of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces that are currently available in my online store contain many gemstone designs.   
You can also contact me to arrange a custom made piece using your favourite stones or materials.

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cleaning and caring for sterling silver

Cleaning & Caring: Sterling Silver

Cleaning specific jewellery pieces

Jewellery consists of many different materials, metals, stones, gems and organic materials.

Each material brings its own cleaning challenges.  If in doubt please just wipe your piece over with a soft cloth after each wear.  This will remove dirt, grime and body oils before you place it back into storage which will keep it looking its best longer.

In some designs the stones or focal pieces are glued into position and some cleaners (even water) may loosen the hold over time causing the focal to fall out.

Caring for Sterling Silver Jewellery

Clean your sterling silver jewellery with a soft cotton or flannel cloth or a special sterling silver cleaning cloth. Remember, silver is very soft and can scratch if you aren’t careful so rub it gently. You may also use a very soft bristle brush, like a baby’s tooth brush or a horsehair silver brush.

Paper, polyester, and coarse fabrics can cause scratches on your sterling silver jewellery.

It’s recommended that you don’t use chemicals on your silver jewellery as it can leave tiny pits causing it to tarnish faster. Store your jewellery in an airtight container as silver will tarnish when exposed to air.

I hope you found this page helpful.

I would love you to bookmark it for the future, or even better, share it!

Peach Crystal & Glass Bracelet Delightful 8mm Czech glass pearl lights in transparent Peach are separated by Light Peach Swarovski crystal
Genevieve Glass & Crystal Bracelet Delightful 8mm Czech glass pearl lights in transparent Claret are joined by Light Rose Swarovski crystal

I have a fabulous range of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces currently available in my online store or you can contact me to visit my home studio or to arrange a custom made piece – just for you.

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Cleaning & Caring: Rhodium Plated Jewellery

Cleaning specific jewellery pieces

Jewellery consists of many different materials, metals, stones, gems and organic materials.

Each material brings its own cleaning challenges.  If in doubt please just wipe your piece over with a soft cloth after each wear.  This will remove dirt, grime and body oils before you place it back into storage which will keep it looking its best longer.

In some designs the stones or focal pieces are glued into position and some cleaners (even water) may loosen the hold over time causing the focal to fall out.

Caring for Rhodium Plated Jewellery

Clean rhodium plated jewellery with warm water and a mild liquid soap.  Rinse and dry immediately with a soft polishing cloth to avoid leaving water marks.

Rhodium plating is not a permanent coating and will wear off over time.  Do not do the dishwashing or apply hand lotions when wearing a plated ring. This contact with chemicals will cause the rhodium to wear away faster.

Don’t use any chemicals on your rhodium items including those for silver or gold.  This includes specialized cleaning cloths. Rhodium plate should not be cleaned with abrasives of any kind including toothpaste and brushes. 

  • Ultrasonic cleaners are not suitable for use on this material.  

You can arrange with your jeweller to have your plating reapplied if the wear becomes too noticeable.

I was recently asked how to tell if a piece is Rhodium Plated.

  • Firstly your jeweller should be able to tell you if your piece is Rhodium plated or the more expensive Platinum.
  • Rhodium is plated over gold and commonly called “white gold”. It will generally be stamped 10k or 14k to indicate what type of gold it is. If a silver-coloured piece has a gold stamp then its Rhodium plated.
  • If it’s an older piece, you may be able to see the gold colour through any worn areas.

I hope you found this page helpful.

Remember to bookmark it for the future, or even better, share it!

The yellow-orange of the 10mm Aragonite stones contrast well with the opaque blue-green of the faceted Amazonite beads.
The feature of this necklace is a mix of lamp-work glass beads featuring spots or raised bumps in a combination of white, blue, yellow and pale tea

I don’t have Rhodium pieces in my range, but I do have a fabulous selection of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces currently available in my online store or you can contact me to arrange a custom made piece – just for you.

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care for your organic beads

Cleaning & Caring: Organic Beads

Cleaning specific jewellery pieces

Jewellery consists of many different materials, metals, stones, gems and organic materials.

Each material brings its own cleaning challenges.  If in doubt please just wipe your piece over with a soft cloth after each wear.  This will remove dirt, grime and body oils before you place it back into storage which will keep it looking its best longer.

In some designs the stones or focal pieces are glued into position and some cleaners (even water) may loosen the hold over time causing the focal to fall out.

Caring for Organic Jewellery

Organic gems like pearls, coral, and amber should only be wiped clean with moist cloth. Due to their organic nature, these gems are both soft and porous.

Shell, bone, horn, tooth, wood and other beads made from natural sources should be cleaned with care.

Be careful about chemicals in hairspray, cosmetics, or perfume which over time can damage pearls in particular. Opals also require special care, avoid heat and strong light.

Opaque gemstones like lapis lazuli, turquoise, malachite, require special care because they are rocks, not crystals of a single mineral like transparent gems. These gem materials should just be wiped clean gently with a moist cloth. These gemstones can be porous and may absorb chemicals, even soap, and they may build up inside the stone and discolour it.

  • Never use an ultrasonic cleaner or ammonia and any other chemical solution.

I hope you found this page helpful.

I would love you to bookmark it for the future, or even better, share it!

Aventurine Donut and Dyed Malaysian Jade in Magenta and Emerald, small bronze Czech glass beads and smooth scalloped gold bead caps complete the design.
Bone and crystal beaded earrings

I have a gorgeous range of gemstone and organic materials in my original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces which are currently available in my online store or you can contact me to arrange a custom made piece – just for you.

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Caring for Gemstone Jewellery

Cleaning & Caring: Gemstones

Cleaning specific jewellery pieces

Jewellery consists of many different materials, metals, stones, gems and organic materials.

Each material brings its own cleaning challenges.  If in doubt please just wipe your piece over with a soft cloth after each wear.  This will remove dirt, grime and body oils before you place it back into storage which will keep it looking its best longer.

In some designs the stones or focal pieces are glued into position and some cleaners (even water) may loosen the hold over time causing the focal to fall out.

Caring for Gemstone Jewellery

Gemstones are literally thought to be as hard as rock, but they come in all ranges of hardness with some being quite soft and may be damaged from careless and rough handling.

Here are some tips for keeping your gems and jewelry looking fabulous for years to come.

Remember, even the hardest gemstone varieties can be vulnerable to breakage especially if it has inclusions that weaken the crystal structure.

Exercise common sense: if you have a ring set with a softer gem variety or an included stone, take it off before strenuous exercise. Even the hardest gem of them all, the diamond, can shatter a well-placed blow.

Remember - please err on the side of caution when trying these tips the first time and use your least loved items as a tester.

I would like to reiterate that the easiest way to care for your jewellery is to quickly wipe the pieces over after each use, that way you won’t need to spend extra time cleaning, rinsing and buffing.  It’s a bit like the “stitch in time” expression.

If you have successfully tried other methods, I would love to hear about them.

Tips on individual care of some stones can be found on other pages of my blog.

I hope you found this page helpful.

I would love you to bookmark it for the future, or even better, share it!

Ocean Jasper and gold finished rondelles add a brilliant contrast to the large Mustang Jasper with its dark, smoky base and flashes of red.
The opaque shades of green in this Saguaro Jasper bracelet are separated by brushed gold coloured flat spacer discs.  These stones are natural. 

I love working with stones and crystals and have a fabulous range of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces including unisex styles.  To see what is currently available visit my online store or feel free to contact me to arrange a custom made piece – just for you.

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Feel free to contact me for more information or to arrange to visit the studio.
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care and clean cubic zirconia jewellery

Cleaning & Caring: Cubic Zirconia

Cleaning specific jewellery pieces

Jewellery consists of many different materials, metals, stones, gems and organic materials.

Each material brings its own cleaning challenges.  If in doubt please just wipe your piece over with a soft cloth after each wear.  This will remove dirt, grime and body oils before you place it back into storage which will keep it looking its best longer.

In some designs the stones or focal pieces are glued into position and some cleaners (even water) may loosen the hold over time causing the focal to fall out.

Caring for Cubic Zirconia Jewellery

Polish your cubic zirconia jewellery with a soft cloth to remove any surface dirt and dust but don’t rub in a hard circular motion which may scratch the surface of some metals used in your jewellery.

Just like a diamond, cubic zirconia can be cleaned with warm water and mild soap. Use a soft brush to reach crevices. You can use a trusted jewellery cleaner on your cubic zirconia.

Another method to clean cubic zirconia is using steam. Hold your jewellery directly over the steam stream to loosen dirt. Holding it over a boiling kettle works well, but use caution and maybe tweezers or tongs to avoid burns. Dry and polish with a suitable cloth.

Cubic zirconia can be cleaned with an ultrasonic cleaner.

These cleaning methods are suitable for Cubic Zirconia but not for pearls, many gemstones or crystals which can be damaged by heat or ultrasonic cleaners.

I hope you found this page helpful.

I would love you to bookmark it for the future, or even better, share it!

Bands of rainbow coloured beads blend into each other and end with a section of gold glass beads in this flat chenille stitch
Citrus Garden Swarovski Crystal and Japanese Seed-bead Necklace This award-winning design features over 130 individual 4mm Swarovski crystals

I have a fabulous range of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces currently available in my online store like these gorgeous crystal necklaces, or you can contact me to arrange a custom made piece – just for you.

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clean and care for Gold and Vermeil Jewellery

Cleaning & Caring: Gold and Vermeil Jewellery

Cleaning specific jewellery pieces

Jewellery consists of many different materials, metals, stones, gems and organic materials.

Each material brings its own cleaning challenges.  If in doubt please just wipe your piece over with a soft cloth after each wear.  This will remove dirt, grime and body oils before you place it back into storage which will keep it looking its best longer.

In some designs the stones or focal pieces are glued into position and some cleaners (even water) may loosen the hold over time causing the focal to fall out.

Caring for Gold and Vermeil Jewellery

Gold jewellery doesn’t tarnish, but it can be dirtied or dulled by the oils in your skin, body lotion, makeup or other substances.

Gold, can be cleaned easily with a mild detergent in warm water and a soft cloth or brush (baby toothbrush).

Put the item into a bowl of warm soapy water and let sit for a few minutes. Use a soft toothbrush to gently scrub the jewellery. Remove the item from the soapy water and rinse it.  Dry thoroughly with a soft polishing cloth.

Gold filled and Vermeil Jewellery (gold plating over sterling silver) can be cleaned in the same way.

I hope you found this page helpful.

I would love you to bookmark it for the future, or even better, share it!

I have a fabulous range of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces currently available in my online store or you can contact me to arrange a custom made piece – just for you.

Join the Insiders Club to shop new designs and exclusive sales
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Jewellery jargon: Clasp styles

Jewellery Jargon

Clasp Styles

In beadwork and jewellery making there are some words that may be confusing in descriptions or statements.  This post will hopefully help you to understand what the clasp styles I mention actually are and how I use them in my designs.  You may find the post on other jewellery findings also interesting.

Parrot or Lobster Clasp

Beaded jewellery jargon, terminology, trade words, styles of clasps, Lobster or Parrot clasp

The most common clasp style is probably the parrot or lobster clasp.  They have these names as they look like a parrot beak or a lobster claw holding onto a ring from the opposite side of the piece.  This style is very functional, generally sit discreetly in the design, and can be used with an extension chain to enable the piece to be lengthened if required.  They may be difficult for people with restricted motor skills (arthritis, tremors etc) to use by themselves. 

Spring Ring Clasp

These work similar to the parrot clasp but are a circular shape.  The latch springs back inside the circle to keep the piece secure.  This clasp is quite inconspicuous when used with chain designs as its appearance can resemble the links.

Toggle Clasp

Beaded jewellery jargon, terminology, trade words, styles of clasps, Toggle clasp
Beaded jewellery jargon, terminology, trade words, styles of clasps, Toggle clasp

A toggle clasp is often a little easier to use.  They consist of an open ring through which a bar passes and sits across the opening  The ring can be as simple as a small smooth circle but can come in many shapes, sizes and some are very ornate.  The larger ornate ones are great as a feature on a the front of a necklace or bracelet but the smaller ones would be more comfortable at the back of the neck.

Screw Clasp

Beaded jewellery jargon, terminology, trade words, styles of clasps, Screw clasp

Both sides of this clasp have a threaded section and to fasten they are screwed together.  They are mainly spherical, tube or barrel in shape and can be quite simple, patterned or embellished in crystals.  This style and the Magnetic Clasp below can look very similar when in the closed position.

Magnetic Clasp

Beaded jewellery jargon, terminology, trade words, styles of clasps, Magnetic clasp
Beaded jewellery jargon, terminology, trade words, styles of clasps, Magnetic clasp

Positive and negative magnets make up each side of these clasps and when brought together the magnetic properties create the clasp.  The strength of the magnet will determine what jewellery item they are appropriate for with only the very strong ones suitable for bracelets or many necklace styles.

This style of clasp can be found in many shapes including hearts, flowers, spherical, tube and barrel.  Some have a fold over style where there is a hinge between both sections of the magnet which folds over the other section of the clasp.  Some of this style can be very ornate.

Magnetic clasps are not recommended for people with pacemakers or other similar devices.

Ball / Box Clasp

Beaded jewellery jargon, terminology, trade words, styles of clasps, Box or Ball clasp

The receiving section of this clasp can come in many styles of ball or box including flowers, gem or crystal encrusted.  This side of the clasp has a internal hollow section to accept the opposite side of the clasp.  This clasp is sometimes called a Tab Clasp  The other side of the clasp is made of a folded “spring”.  To open or close the clasp the spring is pressed together and inserted into the hollow section.  Once in place the spring is released and the clasp is caught.  In the picture above, both clasps are open, but caught on the safety bar.

Some of this style include a bar across the opening of the hole.  This acts as a safety catch to lessen the chance of you loosing the piece if it should get caught or pulled.

Fish Hook Clasp

Beaded jewellery jargon, terminology, trade words, styles of clasps, Fish Hook Clasp
Beaded jewellery jargon, terminology, trade words, styles of clasps, Fish Hook Clasp

This style of clasp is generally an oval or marquee shape and may be filigree, textured or encrusted with marcasite,  stones or crystals.  The mechanism of this clasp is similar to the ball / box clasp in that one section of the clasp is inserted into the other under tension.

The fish hook section is looped over the bar at the entry to the opening and then pushed into place.  The little cutout at the end of the hook locks the clasp into place.  To remove the clasp the ends are pressed together to release the hook which is then slide out and unlooped from the entrance bar.

In the above picture you can see how this entrance bar acts like a safety catch and how this clasp gets its name.

Hook & Eye Clasp

Beaded jewellery jargon, terminology, trade words, styles of clasps, Hook and Eye Clasp

At its very basic design this style is a simple hook on one side of the clasp which catches into a ring connector (the eye) on the other and gravity keeps the piece in place.  In some styles the hook is shaped like the letter S and has rings on either end which are worked into the beaded design.  Each end of the S connects to one of the rings.  Generally one of the tails of the S sits a little firmer on the ring while the other one moves on and off with ease.

This style can be very ornate and look like the tails of animals or dragonflies or vines and flowers entwined with each other.  The can even look like ropes or ribbons.  The eye may be in the form of a fish which is caught on the hook or even the head of an animal with its tail used as the hook.  There are some self closing forms of this style which may have animal heads biting onto each side of a central ring.  Some of these styles may include a hinged safety latch which folds over the top of the S and connects one side to the other.

Slide Lock Clasp

Beaded jewellery jargon, terminology, trade words, styles of clasps, Slide Clasp
Beaded jewellery jargon, terminology, trade words, styles of clasps, Slide Clasp

With this style of clasp, both sides look nearly identical to each other as cylindrical tubes each with an open end and a caped end.  On closer inspection one tube has a slightly larger diameter and it has a slit cut from one end to the other.  The other tube has a tension spring which when slid inside the larger tube catches to form the clasp.

This style may come with individual rings attached to the outside for single strands or be longer and include many rings for multi strands.  They are also found with one long section like a buckle instead of rings for attaching ribbon or leather.

Button Clasp

Beaded jewellery jargon, terminology, trade words, styles of clasps, Button Clasp
Beaded jewellery jargon, terminology, trade words, styles of clasps, Button Clasp

There are two individual styles under this name.

One is the common button, similar to those on our clothing.  They can be caught by passing through a buttonhole in the design or a ring of beads or fibres can pass over the button to form the clasp.

The other style that falls under this name has two sections of metal each with their own ring for attaching to the design.  One has a hole in the centre and the other a knob like feature which presses into the hole similar to a press-stud.

Other Clasp Styles

Beaded jewellery jargon, terminology, trade words, styles of clasps, Other clasp styles
Beaded jewellery jargon, terminology, trade words, styles of clasps, Other clasp styles

There are many of other clasp styles, but they generally have a similar way of operating as the ones I’ve mentioned here.  If you would like a particular clasp style added to a custom order, or if you wish to have one of my pieces currently listed at the online store altered to make it more wearable for your particular need, please contact me to discuss your requirements.

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I hope you found this page helpful.

Do you have any suggestions or requests for information on other terminology that you are unsure of. Get in touch with me and let me know.

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Cleaning and care of stainless steel jewellery

Cleaning & Caring: Stainless Steel

Cleaning specific jewellery pieces

Jewellery consists of many different materials, metals, stones, gems and organic materials.

Each material brings its own cleaning challenges.  If in doubt please just wipe your piece over with a soft cloth after each wear.  This will remove dirt, grime and body oils before you place it back into storage which will keep it looking its best longer.

In some designs the stones or focal pieces are glued into position and some cleaners (even water) may loosen the hold over time causing the focal to fall out.

Caring for Stainless Steel Jewellery

Stainless steel jewellery does not generally tarnish as fast as silver jewellery but the rate of tarnishing depends on how often it’s used. 100% stainless steel will NOT rust.

Stainless steel jewellery is easy to clean using a mild dishwashing liquid in a bowl warm water, rinse and dry with a soft cloth. It will polish to a natural sheen in which you should be able to see your reflection.

Using a bowl will limit the chances of the item going down the drain.  If using a sink remember to remove all items before pulling the plug!

Stainless steel jewellery is very durable and can withstand a lot of wear and tear, as opposed to silver which is a very soft metal. As with any jewellery it is best to avoid contact with chemicals (lotions, chlorine from pools etc.) in order to keep it cleaner longer. 

There are some unscrupulous traders out there who may sell a lighter aluminium or alloy material as stainless steel.  These are generally lighter in weight, may tarnish badly, have red/brown rust marks and can cause irritation to the skin. 

If in doubt, see if a magnet holds firmly to your piece.  If it does then it is likely stainless steel.  Another hint is to tap the piece with a brass key.  It should ring out, sometimes for an extended time.

If you have one of the alloy pieces you can try to clean the rust marks off with a paste of baking soda and lemon juice.  Apply it thickly to the affected spots and let dry.  Once dry rub the surface with a cut potato which has been dipped into salt.  Rinse and dry thoroughly. 

I hope you found this page helpful.

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Most of my earrings can be altered to include stainless (surgical) steel ear-wires when requested.  All of my (not stitched) bracelets and necklaces are threaded onto nylon coated stainless steel, unless otherwise stated.

I have a fabulous range of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces currently available in my online store or you can contact me to arrange a custom made piece – just for you.

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Are you looking for original, beautiful beaded jewellery which has been designed and crafted with care & attention

Beautiful and Exclusive Jewellery?

Are you looking for beautiful beaded jewellery which has been designed and crafted
with care & attention by an award winning artisan?  Designs you know you won’t see anywhere else.  All my designs (other than Bespoke work) are one of a kind (OOAK), so you can be confident knowing you are the proud owner of an original design.

A Source of Inspiration

I design and handcraft my original pieces at my home studio adjacent to the beautiful bush and wetlands of Bibra Lake Nature Reserve which is part of the much larger Beeliar Wetlands system.  The colours and textures of our wonderful Australian landscapes provide loads of inspiration for my designs as do the beads themselves. 

Quality Techniques

I use quality finishing techniques such as wire guardians to protect clasps and threads and crimp covers to offer a professional look, but also to reduce the sharp edges that a regular pressed crimp may offer.

I use quality finishing techniques such as wire guardians to protect clasps and threads and crimp covers to offer a professional look, but also to reduce the sharp edges that a regular pressed crimp may offer.

Pearls and softer gemstones are generally knotted onto silk or cord to provide a buffer between each bead which protects them from wear and tear.

My Guarantee

Delighting customers and building a base of trust are priorities of my business, therefore I offer efficient service, well-crafted designs and a 12-month guarantee on all original designs and repairs or remodelling.  This enables you to relax and buy from me with confidence.

My beadwork can be purchased from the website, Facebook, Instagram, local markets or from the Studio (by appointment).

I hope you found this page helpful.

Please remember to bookmark it for the future, or even better, share it!

Visit the website to view some of the lovely things people say about my designs and services.

Spirals of alternating rows of coloured and silver glass beads in a tubular chenille stitch make this gorgeous bracelet
Tropical Island Glass Bead Bracelet A fabulous mix of glass beads in various shades of green is highlighted with splashes of red, yellow and blues

I have a beautiful range of colourful and unique one-of-a-kind pieces currently available in my online store or you can contact me to arrange a custom made piece – just for you.

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Award Winning Designs

Designed and Created by Me

Several of my designs have won awards which is always an honour when competing with peers.  

I enjoy competing in these exhibitions and competitions, as some have a theme to adhere to and that is a great way to get out of my comfort zone and learn a new technique or use a new material.

Immogen

1st Place - Jewellery Category - Perth Royal Show

Award winning design
Award certificate

Links of Artistic wire in Gunmetal were hand formed on a WigJig. They are linked to the Gunmetal wire wrapped Czech Jablonex Vitrial bicones by Boho Gold jump rings.

13 more Jablonex Vitrial bicones dangle from Boho Gold headpins. Satin ribbons form the clasp enabling the design to be worn at a range of lengths. 

Citrus Garden

2nd Place - Beading Category - Perth Royal Show

Award winning citrus garden design
Award certificate

More than 130 single Xilion cut 4mm Swarovski crystals in Jonquil, Light topaz, Sunflower and Swarovski 5301 in Sun are matched with Miyuki 11/0 Transparent AB Green Delicas in this gorgeous necklace. 

Swarovski Crystal diamantes and a faceted teardrop complete the design.

Tropical Adventures

3rd Place - Original Design Category - Perth Royal Show

Award winning design: Chenille stitched long necklace
Award certificate

Sections of tubular chenille stitch in yellow and green are punctuated with sections of Czech druk beads and tiny silver stars. 

A beautiful Lamp-work bead (looks a bit like a pineapple) and beaded tassel hangs from a Peyote stitched bail.

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Betty

1st Place - Beading - Woven (on or off Loom) Division

Award winning design

This gorgeous bracelet received 1st Place in the Beading – Woven (on or off Loom) Division of the 2018 West Australian Lapidary and Rockhunting Clubs Annual Awards.

Transparent cherry red glass beads & opaque metallic gold mix glass seed-beads are combined with stitching and wire to create this cheerful bracelet.

5 sets of “cherry” charms are created using the same red glass beads and Czech pressed glass leaves.

A lobster claw clasp and extension chain complete the design. From the extension chain drips another red glass bead.

Frances

2nd Place - Beading - Woven (on or off Loom) Division

Award winning design

Like a wild but contained garden. Gorgeous transparent Czech pressed glass bell flowers and leaves drip from these spirals like buds bursting into bloom.

I am excited to say this beautiful Frances Green Spiral Rope Necklace has just been awarded 2nd place in the Beading – Woven (on or off Loom) Division of the 2018 West Australian Lapidary and Rockhunting Clubs Annual Awards.

Petra

2nd Place - Wired or Strung - Ready to Wear Division

the West Australian Lapidary and Rockhunting Club's 2018 Annual Competition. Category 8: Beading A piece of jewellery wired or strung together. Jewellery must be ready to wear. Judging is based on aesthetics, originality and design. I am excited that this piece I designed and created using Czech pressed glass beads and USA made bead-cones was awarded 2nd prize in this category for 2018

the West Australian Lapidary and Rockhunting Club’s 2018 Annual Competition.

A piece of jewellery wired or strung together. Jewellery must be ready to wear. Judging is based on aesthetics, originality and design.

Awards and Trophy from the West Australian Lapidary and Rockhunting Club’s 2018 Annual Competition

Lapidary & Rock Hunting Club of WA Inc Award winning beading designs.

Ceres

2nd Place - Theme (Scarecrow) - Perth Royal Show

Award winning design
Perth Royal Show 2nd place award for beading

To honour the Year of the Farmer, the theme for this competition was “Scarecrow”.

Winning Second Place in the Perth Royal Show for Ceres was a very happy and humbling experience, as there are some fabulous beaders in our community.

Wanting to do something out of the box, I consequently came up with this design and hence called her Ceres.  Which I thought was especially relevant as she was the Goddess of sowing and reaping.

Each wooden scrabble tile was hand-drilled to create the thread-path I wanted, as a result all the threads are internal and can not be seen outside the tiles.

Beach Bag

Joint Award Winner - Theme (Summer) - Bead Guild of WA Inc

Beach Bag, joint first prize award winner, Bead Guild of WA
Close up of beach bag, joint first prize award winner

“Summer” Theme Bead Guild of WA challenge – This colourful Beach Bag design was chosen as a joint winner!

The title of the Bead Guild Members “Challenge” was ‘Summer’ and most noteworthy, members could make anything they wished from the beads supplied.

They could use as much or as little as they like from the kit, and in addition they could add more from their own stash but earnt points for each bead/item used from the kit.

When telling us the outlines of the challenge, Di did say that she could be evil, and on seeing the amount of fibre and the colour combinations – I am apt to believe her. Still, challenges and competitions are a great way of getting the creative juices flowing.

The kit contained, memory wire, chain, seed-beads, lamp-worked beads, bugles, crackle beads, pearls, flower beads and 5 different forms of fibre.

Deandra

First Place Award Winner - Cockburn Community & Cultural Council Inc

Award winning brass and crystal necklace
First Prize award winner brass and crystal necklace

My piece, “Deandra” won First Place at the Cockburn Community & Cultural Council Inc Awards in the Jewellery – Wearable division.

Diamond shaped components are joined with handmade links of wire and Czech fire-polished glass. A pressed brass stamping creates the base of the pendant. In addition, it is highlighted with Czech Jablonex Vitrial bicones and Boho Gold round corrugated metal beads.

Furthermore, additional drops of Vitrial bicones and Boho Gold metal beads are suspended from many of the jump rings creating lots of movement and sparkle to the design. Finally, a neck ring is wrapped with Gunmetal coloured wire while the centre features more sparkling Vitrial bicones.

Monocco

First Place Award Winner - Non Seed Bead Division - Bead Guild of WA inc

Cherry wood and crystal necklace, First prize award, Bead Guild of WA
first place award winner, Bead Guild of Western Australia

The piece “Morocco” won First Place in the non-seed bead category.

I was excited with the result as the Judges were leaders in their fields and I was competing against some wonderful beaders.

This design was made from lazer cut Cherry wood components linked with wire wrapping and Swarovski Crystals.

I hope you found this page helpful.

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Rae Screw-back earrings

I have a fabulous range of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces currently available in my online store or you can contact me to arrange a custom made piece – just for you.

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Exhibitions, Events & Stockists

That I have my designs featured

I participate in events and exhibitions throughout the year where my designs can be viewed.  This includes the Perth Royal Show which is held annually at the end of September to the beginning of October, starting over the WA Queen’s Birthday holiday weekend.

As event dates come closer I will add them here.

Perth Royal Show

25 September – 2 October, 2021

I will share details on the item I have submitted as this date gets closer.

Cockburn Community & Cultural Council

October 2nd - 3rd, 2021

The annual Arts & Crafts Exhibition is held at the Spearwood Dalmatinac Club.

Stockist List

West Perth Collective

If you would like more information on any of these events or to become a stockists please contact me.

The yellow-orange of the 10mm Aragonite stones contrast well with the opaque blue-green of the faceted Amazonite beads.
Three strands of glass beads in Opaque Rose Gold Topaz lustre are paired with gold flattened bead-cones with an etched leaf design and the colours echo that of the facades of the Rose City

I have a fabulous range of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces currently available in my online store or you can contact me to arrange a custom made piece – just for you.

 

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custom made designs are available MaxineFaye

Custom-made or Commissioned Jewellery

Together we can design an exclusive piece of beaded jewellery

Bespoke and Custom-made designs can be arranged. Make an appointment and bring all your wonderful ideas to the table.

Do you want something exquisite for a special gift?
Don’t have the time to run all over town looking for it?

If you have a special piece in mind, contact me to arrange the design using, colours and beads of your choice and then sit back and relax.

Visit the website to see the work I have done previously and be inspired to join my mission of making the world a more beautiful place.

A Special Occasion Coming Up?

Bespoke creations are wonderful for Gifts, Weddings, Balls or other special occasions.

glass pearl and crystal necklace

Are you looking for an exquisite gift? Let me create it for you and you won’t have to run all over town looking for it?

Have you an accumulation of beads from your travels that you would like crafted into a fabulous piece for yourself or someone special?

Would you like duplicates of chosen designs made for Bridesmaids or family members

Most bespoke or custom-made designs can be made in multiples*

Some of my existing designs can be duplicated or remade in different materials or stones to suit your requirements.  This will depend on the availability (and suitability) of the materials and the original design.

Visit the Testimonial page to read reviews from some of my previous customers, and feel free to contact me to ask any questions.

Do you love one of my designs?

But need it altered to suit your requirements?

I can often change the clasp style.  Do you find the basic lobster style difficult to use?  I can add a toggle or magnetic clasp.  As a result, it will be easier for you to wear.

Either due to different requirements or personal likes you may want an ear-wire changed.  I can change earrings from hook to stud or even lever-back.  Especially of interest to those without piercings, I can alter most designs to suit non-pierced ears by using clip-on or screw-on findings.

If you have allergies to some metals, ear-wires can be changed to surgical steel or niobium (which is physiologically inert and hypoallergenic)

Depending on the design of the original piece, I can at times reduce / increase existing designs if they are too large / small.

The Initial Consultation is Free!

And you are under no obligation to continue with the design.

custom made set

All costs will be quoted on before you commit to the project and you will be asked to confirm your acceptance of the costs and the design in writing.

Bespoke designs or Commissions and large alterations will require a 50% deposit once the design has been finalised and the quote accepted.

This deposit is refundable, less any supplies specific for your design that have been ordered.  Under some circumstances an hourly fee may be deducted for time already spent on a complex design.

Crafting of the item will not commence until the quote has been accepted and the deposit paid.  (Please keep this in mind if the design is required by a certain date).

The item may not be collected or posted until final payment has cleared.

I hope you found this page helpful.

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bright charm bracelet MaxineFaye
MaxineFaye Handcrafted Beaded Bracelet stack

From formal to bright and cheerful, with a custom design you can choose the beads and style that suits you or your loved one best.  Contact me to arrange an appointment either in the studio, over the phone or by email.

I also have a fabulous range of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces currently available in my online store.

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Care for opal gems

Cleaning & Caring: Opals

Solid Opal is a soft stone so please treat gently to avoid damaging it

Cleaning your Opals

Solid opal can be cleaned gently with a mild detergent in lukewarm water and a soft cloth. Do not use strong chemicals and cleaners.  Never place your opals in an ultrasonic cleaner, as the intense vibrations may cause cracking in a solid opal, and water penetration in a doublet or triplet.  Small scratches and scuff marks can cause an opal to lose its shiny polish and become dull looking. If this is the case with your stones a professional polisher should be contacted to bring it back to life.

Storing your Opals

To store, simply place your opal in a soft cloth bag for protection and place it in a safe place where it won’t be knocked. If you need to store your stones in a very low humidity safe or vault, first wrap your opal in cotton wool with a few drops of water, then into a sealed plastic bag just to be safe. As the opal is impervious, the water will not soak into the but it will prevent water coming out of the stone.

Boulder-Opal

Exceptions to the above

If your opal isn’t a Solid but is a Doublet or Triplet style the care is a little different.

A Doublet is a thin layer of opal glued over a dark base to enhance its colours.

A Triplet has a third clear layer (generally glass or clear Quartz) glued to the top to provide a rounded shape and protect the actual stone.

Because these consist of multiple layers glued together, prolonged exposure to water will eventually cause lifting between the layers and the infiltration of water causing a ‘foggy’ or grey appearance.

Forgetting and wearing it in the shower once or being caught in the rain shouldn’t do any damage but do not expose your Doublet or Triplet opals to prolonged water exposure>

To clean Doublets or Triplets, they may be wiped with a damp soft cloth and mild detergent, but should never be soaked or immersed in water.

I hope you found this page helpful.

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The beautiful earthy colours of the two sizes of natural Sunset Jasper gemstones in this bracelet are separated by 2 brass triangular nugget shaped beads.
Copper spacers add contrast to the Mustang Jasper with its dark, smoky base and flashes of red. The copper is repeated in the clasp and findings

I have a fabulous range of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces currently available in my online store or you can contact me to arrange a custom made piece – just for you.

 

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What Length Should I Order

How to choose the necklace slength that suits you.

Names of some Standard Necklace Lengths

  • Collar – this style fits closely around the neck 
  • Choker – sits around the base of the neck and is a 
  • Princess – sits on the collarbone and is a popular length
  • Matinee – Falls below the collarbone and above the bust
  • Opera – falls below the bust
  • Rope / Lariat – Falls towards the naval.  These are the longest style with the rope not having a clasp while the lariat does.

These longer styles can be worn long as a single strand, wrapped two or even three times for a layered look or knotted.

Standard necklace length and names

Standard Mens Necklace Lengths

  • 18 inch – sits at the base of the neck.
  • 20 inch – sits at the collarbone
  • 22 inch – sits below the collarbone
  • 24 inch – sits above the sternum
  • Over 24 inch sits on or below the sternum

How to measure for a custom necklace

The fall of the mentioned lengths will be determined by your height and fullness of your neck and chest.

Decide where you would like the necklace to sit, then take a piece of string or similar and drape it around your neck.  Bring the string together at the point on your chest you would like the necklace to sit.  Not this on the string with a marker, or by cutting it at that point.  Lay the string out flat and measure.  This is the length to request your necklace be made to.

Please remember this does not include the additional length of any pendant or tassel which you will need to be mindful of.

I hope you found this page helpful.

For more information on Jewellery terms, jargon, cleaning and other information check out my other posts.  While you are here check out the gorgeous items I currently have available at my online store.

 

The feature of this necklace is a mix of lamp-work glass beads featuring spots or raised bumps in a combination of white, blue, yellow and pale tea
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Cleaning plated jewellery has its challenges and one of the best things it to wipe it regularly with a soft cloth after each use to remove body oils and airborne dust or pollutants.

Cleaning & Caring: Plated Jewellery

Cleaning plated jewellery has its challenges and one of the best things it to wipe it regularly with a soft cloth after each use to remove body oils and airborne dust or pollutants.

Sometimes we start with this intention, but soon it becomes hard work and we just remove the piece and pop it back into the drawer, jewellery box or display unit, but over time the piece will show signs of tarnish and dullness.  What to do?

One easy (and cheap) way to store jewellery is in a sealed container with one of those little silica gel bags that come in all sorts of things.  Think of it as recycling.  I save these little packets from all sorts of purchases – from shoes right through to bags of flatbread wraps – and pop them in with my jewellery or supplies.

Another simple idea (but you generally must purchase them) are little Anti-Tarnish Paper Strips.  They are treated to protect metals from tarnishing by absorbing sulphides and other pollutants in the air. They will protect silver, gold, copper, bronze, nickel, tin and plated metals; for everything from jewellery to musical instruments.

Oops, too late!

The above will all protect your jewellery from tarnish, but how to get it gleaming again after the damage has been done?

Below are a few ideas for cleaning jewellery at home.  Please note that not every cleaning suggestion is suitable for every piece of jewellery. 

I am not affiliated with or have any connection to the companies or products mentioned in this post. 
This information is from my own personal use and observations.

Please err on the side of caution when trying these and use your least loved items as a tester.

Electrolytic Cleaning Plates

DSCN3203l o-so-bright cleaning plate

Years ago, I was at one of the home shows and after watching the demonstration, bought a “o-so-Bright” plate for electrolytic cleaning of gold, silver, silver plate and jewellery. 

Now this does work and generally works well but NOT for jewellery that contains Pearls, Opal, other delicate stones or anything glued.  To activate the reaction, boiling water is used, and this is way to harmful for some stones and settings. 

Specific Jewellery Cleaning Solutions

DSCN3208l cleaning liquid

Another option is one of the delicate Jewellery Cleaners specifically made for Semi-Precious stones, Pearls and costume jewellery.

This comes in a tub with a little strainer inside.  You generally place an item at a time in the solution, wait 30 seconds, lift the strainer and remove the piece.  This piece then needs to be rinsed in lukewarm water (there is a little brush in the kit to remove any debris that hasn’t soaked off) and then dried with a lint free cloth. 

Again, this works, but if you many pieces to clean, this will take a while.

Jewellery Cleaning Cloths

DSCN3205l selvyt cleaning cloth

I also use a Selvyt RS polishing cloth

These multipurpose polishing cloths are manufactured from woven unbleached cotton with a raised surface. 

This surface lifts particles to leave a perfect finish on platinum, gold, silver, and fashion jewellery; silver plate and hollow ware; stainless steel; polished wood; optical lenses; computer screens; leather goods and more.

They can be washed and reused many times and work well, I just need to find the chambermaid to start polishing, there is some elbow grease required.

Rouge Polishing Compound

DSCN3202l rouge

If you have a lot of left-over elbow grease or an electronic buffer, you can use a red “Dialux Rouge” compound to polish with. 

This is good on larger or less intricate objects, but I find with beaded jewellery it tends to get stuck in all the nooks and crannies and I end up with a bigger mess than when I started.

DIY Cleaning Solution

DSCN3206l ural chemists own

Another quick and easy one to try is Alka Seltzer

I read about this one last night and gave it a go.  Pop your items in a glass or cup, cover with water and add an Alka Seltzer tablet or sachet.  Leave for 5 min to do its bubbling then rinse and dry. 

I didn’t have any Alka Seltzer in the house, but did have some chemists own brand Ural style powder so I thought I would experiment as most of the ingredients were the same (without the aspirin – which I didn’t think the jewellery would benefit from anyway).  It worked pretty well on the glass and metal beads I experimented on. 

I haven’t tried on stones etc yet so will keep you up to date on that. 

Remember - please err on the side of caution when trying these and use your least loved items as a tester.

I have tried all these cleaning methods with varying degrees of success and ease but would like to reiterate that the easiest thing is to quickly wipe the pieces over after each use, that way you won’t need to spend extra time cleaning, rinsing and buffing.  It’s a bit like the “stitch in time” expression.

If you have successfully tried other methods, I would love to hear about them.

I hope you found this page helpful.

Remember to bookmark it for the future, or even better, share it!

The yellow-orange of the 10mm Aragonite stones contrast well with the opaque blue-green of the faceted Amazonite beads.

I have a fabulous range of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces currently available in my online store or you can contact me to arrange a custom made piece – just for you.

Join the Insiders Club to shop new designs and exclusive sales
Feel free to contact me for more information or to arrange to visit the studio.
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Cleaning and caring for organic jewellery

Cleaning & Caring: Pearls

Regular cleaning should keep your Pearls looking luminous

While the natural oils from your skin can improve Pearl’s sheen, they can also damage or discolour the silk thread, therefore wipe each Pearl and the silk strand gently after each use with a dedicated jewellery cloth, or suitable soft fabric such as bamboo or velvet. Do not pull on the tread as that may cause stretching.

Due to the softness of Pearls, they are generally threaded onto silk. If that silk stretches or loosens, it may break suddenly. Inspect the integrity of the thread and knots during each cleaning session.

You may lightly dampen the cloth with water if required. As real pearls come from the ocean, some people believe they are best washed in salty water.

Never use harsh fabrics or abrasive tools such as toothbrushes or ultrasonic cleaners on your Pearls, nor commercial cleaners which may contain ammonia which can damage your investment.

Extra Cleaning

Occasionally, especially after heavy or prolonged wear, you may need to use something a little stronger than a damp cloth. You may use a mild soap without fragrance or additives such as castile soap. I don’t recommend the use of detergent or dishwashing liquids.

Dip the cloth in the room temperature, soapy water, wipe the Pearls as usual and then wipe over with a clean damp cloth to remove any soapy residue.

Lay the pearls on a soft cloth (not in the sun) to thoroughly air-dry before returning them to storage. This helps preserves the elasticity of the silk thread. Do not wear the necklace until the silk thread is perfectly dry to prevent it from stretching.

Close up Elegant Pearl Necklace on Glossy Table, Emphasizing Reflection Image.

Storage

To clean the clasp, use a jewellery cleaner that is suitable for the metal. Dip a cotton bud into the cleaner and wipe the clasp, then refresh with a dampened cloth. Do not let the cleaner have contact with the Pearls as it may damage them.

Store your Pearl necklace laying down in a soft lined box or pouch to reduce the silk thread stretching. As you can see in the photo above, the knots are no longer resting tightly between each pearl.

Always protect your pearl necklace from sharp blows, scratching, sunlight and heat/cold. Store separated from other jewellery as those gems or settings may scratch the Pearl.

Never place your Pearls in airtight containers or use plastic pouches to store them, as that’ll cause them to dry out and crack. Like skin, they need air and moisture to retain their nacre.

Chemicals such as perfume, hairspray and makeup are common causes of deterioration in Pearls. Before wearing your Pearls, wait until perfumes and sprays have dried.

I would love to hear if you have found other methods of cleaning or caring for you pearls that have worked.

pearl

Are my Pearls real?

To tell if your Pearls are real, gently rub them along your front teeth. If there is a slightly gritty, sandy feel, they are real.  If there is no gritty sensation, and they run smoothly, then sorry, but they are mot probably fake.

I hope you found this page helpful.

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Swarovski Clear Crystal with an AB finish and white Swarovski Crystal Pearls are separated by small smooth gold plated scalloped bead-caps.
pastel glass pearl waterfall necklace

I have a fabulous selection of pearls in stock so feel free to contact me to arrange a custom piece.  My range of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces are currently available in my online store 

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cleaning and caring for jewellery rings

Cleaning & Caring: Rings

Cleaning specific jewellery pieces

Jewellery consists of many different materials, metals, stones, gems and organic materials.

Each material brings its own cleaning challenges.  If in doubt please just wipe your piece over with a soft cloth after each wear.  This will remove dirt, grime and body oils before you place it back into storage which will keep it looking its best longer.

In some designs the stones or focal pieces are glued into position and some cleaners (even water) may loosen the hold over time causing the focal to fall out.

Caring for Rings

Never remove rings by pulling on the stone as that habit may result in a loose, then lost, gem. Most importantly, store each piece of gemstone jewellery separately so that harder stones don’t scratch softer ones. Many gemstones are  harder than the metal it is set in. Gems can scratch the finish on your gold, silver or platinum if you throw your jewellery in a heap in a drawer or jewellery box.

Rings in particular tend to collect dust and soap in the setting behind the gem, especially if worn often. Cleaning them regularly will let the light through for your gems to sparkle.

To clean transparent crystalline gemstones, simply soak them in water with a touch of gentle dish soap. Use a bowl of water rather than the sink to eliminate the risk of anything going down the drain. If necessary, use a soft toothbrush to scrub behind the stone. Rinse the soap off and pat dry with a lint-free cloth (you want to make sure threads won’t catch on the prongs).

Some rings may be glued into their setting so be careful when cleaning them.

Think twice before putting gems in an ultrasonic cleaner. Diamonds, rubies and sapphires may be fine but many other gems may not be, in particular emerald, opal, pearls, peridot: when in doubt, leave it out.

I hope you found this page helpful.

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A collection of gorgeous deep teal glass beads are the feature of this beautiful bracelet. Aqua, Emerald and Seafoam greens
Bands of rainbow coloured beads blend into each other and end with a section of gold glass beads in this flat chenille stitch

I don’t currently make rings, but I have a fabulous range of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces currently available in my online store or you can contact me to arrange a custom made piece – just for you.

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What Size Should I Order

How to choose the bracelet size that suits you.

Bracelet Lengths

What size Bracelet should you order?

if you are wondering if one of my bracelets will fit you… just add your wrist size to the sizes below, depending on how you would like it to fit your wrist.  If you are concerned I can always add an extension chain and lobster clasp to the design.

Measure your wrist with a tape placed firmly (but not tight). If you don’t have a tape measure, you can use a piece of string or a strip of paper and once marked, lay it flat and measure with a ruler.

  • Firm fit: Add ¼” to ½” to your wrist size (approx. 6mm
    to 13mm)
  • Comfortable fit: Add ¾” to 1” to your wrist size (approx. 19mm to 25mm)
  • Loose fit: Add 1 ¼” (approx. 32mm)
To find your bracelet size, just add your wrist size to the sizes below depending on what fit you like the best.

If you are ordering a bracelet as a gift, and you want it to be a surprise (so cant measure their wrist), then these sizes may help.

My bracelets are not stretchy elastic but are either threaded onto coated stainless steel or knotted onto cord, and an extension chain or an adjustable knot can be added if you are not confident.

To find your bracelet size, just add your wrist size to the sizes below depending on what fit you like the best.

I hope you found this page helpful.

For more information on Jewellery terms, jargon, cleaning and other information check out my other posts.  While you are here check out the gorgeous items I currently have available at my online store.

 

bright charm bracelet MaxineFaye
The stitched rope section of this bracelet is quite firm and holds its shape beautifully. A spiral of beads creates a wonderful pattern
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Feel free to contact me for more information or to arrange to visit the studio.
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Beading classes are available

Beading Classes

1:1 or small groups. Suitable for many ages and abilities.

These beading classes are a fun and relaxed way to learn a new skill.  You can bring your own beads or old jewellery and create something new.    Individual classes can generally be adapt to suit your abilities and you can choose which classes to participate in and when.

Classes can be run during the day, in the evening or on a week-end.

Classes are generally 2 hours sessions although this can be adapted to suit your circumstances.

Some of the Classes available are:

  • Stringing and crimping a simple necklace
  • Making wire loops for earrings
  • Wire wrapping a charm bracelet
  • Peyote stitched cuff bracelet (simple)
  • Peyote stitched cuff bracelet(embellished)
  • Using other stitching techniques
  • Simple wire weaving
  • Multi-strand necklace
  • Spiral rope necklace
  • Suncatchers / Brooches
  • Plus many more. If you have a request that is not on the above list, please ask

Prices

Individual (1:1) Classes

$40.00 for each 2-hour class.  This includes the use of tools and light refreshments.

Small Group Classes (2 - 6 people)

Save between 5% - 25% by bringing a friend or small group.

The small group class is a great option for making jewellery for your Bridal party.

What to Bring?

  • Bring your own tools and beading materials if you have them.  The price doesn’t include beads and materials and you are welcome to bring your own.
  • I have a selection of tools and beading mats that you may use during the class if you don’t have your own, so don’t stress.
  • Many beads and findings are available for sale before or after the class, but it is not essential to purchase from me to take the class (although it would be great).
  • Please bring a container with a secure lid, to transport your beading piece and supplies (Take-away container or zip-lock bag is suitable).
  • Classes can be run at your venue. Please contact me for further information and pricing.

Do you have a wedding coming up?

I would love you to bookmark it for the future, or even better, share it!

white charm bracelet
pastel glass pearl waterfall necklace

I have a fabulous range of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces currently available in my online store or you can contact me to arrange a custom made piece – just for you.

Join the Insider's Club to shop first on new designs and exclusive sale events
Feel free to contact me for more information or to arrange to visit the studio.
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Jewellery Jargon

Findings

Findings, is a word used in beadwork and jewellery making, that may sound confusing in descriptions or statements. This post will hopefully help you to understand what the items I mention actually are and how I use them in my designs.  I have another post on clasp styles that you might also find helpful.

Wire Guardians

Wire guardians, Wire protectors, French wire, Bouillon, Gimp

wire guardian findings

Beading wire and threads can be damaged by the wear and tear of clasps and other components.

A wire guardian or wire protector is a little horseshoe-shaped tube through which beading wire or thread is passed. The arched section is open on one side for ease of threading, but the solid sections protect the wire from wear on clasps or connectors.

Sometimes I may use Bullion/French wire which does the same thing but is a different product and not as firm. (It looks like a little soft spring)

Crimps & Crimp Covers

Crimp beads, Crimp tubes, Crimp covers, Charlottes and Bead-tips

crimp beads and crimp cover bead findings

Crimp beads are generally round or tubed.  Once in position over the wire they are crimped or squashed into place to secure the wires.

The crimp covers are round beads that have an open seam. Once the wire has been crimped into place, a cover is positioned over the original crimp and is gently closed along its seam. This provides a neat appearance but also protects you or delicate clothing from the sharp edges that may be on some flattened crimps by covering them.

Similar covers are made to hide the knots in thread and cord.  This style is in the centre back of this picture.

Crimp covers and wire guardians provide a professional finish to my designs.

In the photo above you can see how all these elements come together to create a neat look which protects the wire and the beads.

Beading Wire

Nylon Coated Beading Wire

beading wire findings

Beading wire is a stringing material made up of several thin stainless-steel strands . It’s generally coated with a layer of nylon that protects the wires from wear and tear and gives it a softer, more supple feel. The coating can be clear or coloured allowing a better match to the colour of the beads or gemstones.

In general the larger the number of strands of wire strands the more flexible and string-like it will feel while a smaller number of strand gives a stiffer and more kinkable thread. 

The beading wire is usually made up of 7, 19 and 49 strands and range in diameter from fine to thick and like fishing wire each have a different “break” strength and a different cost factor.

I hope you found this page helpful.

Do you have any suggestions or requests for information on other terminology that you are unsure of.
I would love to hear from you 

I would love you to bookmark it for the future, or even better, share it!

labradorite gemstone and sterling silver necklace by MaxineFaye
Sterling silver and crystal child's anklet by MaxineFaye

I have a fabulous range of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces currently available in my online store or you can contact me to arrange a custom made piece – just for you.

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Repair and remodelling service at MaxineFaye

Let me Repair or Remodel

your broken or damaged beadwork

I can repair broken strands by restringing.  I offer silk for Pearls and softer Gemstones as that will protect the delicate bead.  Because of wear and tear from the sharp edges of Glass or Crystal designs, a stronger thread or beading wire may be needed.

I can tidy up an existing design if it has damaged sections. The amount of repair will depend on the amount of damage to the original design and if you want to replicate it or remodel the design.

Altering earring wires either due to different requirements or personal likes is another thing I offer.  I can change earrings from hook to stud or even lever-back.  Especially relevant for those without piercings, I can alter most designs to suit non-pierced ears by using clip-on or screw-on findings.  Also, if you have allergies to some metals, earwires can be changed to surgical steel or niobium (which is physiologically inert and hypoallergenic)

Would you like to change a style of clasp.  Do you find the basic lobster style difficult to use?  I can add a toggle or magnetic clasp.  As a result, wearing your jewellery will be easier.

 

repair glass pearl necklace
The original necklace above belonged to the customers Mother…but had been placed into an ultrasonic cleaner and much of the coating has come off the glass beads.
 I rethreaded with new Pearls, cleaned, and replaced lost crystals in the clasp and added the extra strand which had been broken a long time ago.   From the salvaged beads of the original design, I made bracelets for the Bride and Flower-Girl (great-granddaughter of the original owner). It is always such an honour to be trusted with items as sentimental as this.

Other Repairs I Offer

Although elastic bracelets look good, and are often cheap, they are also my biggest request for repair.  People buy them while on holidays or from Trash and Treasure markets and are then disappointed when they break.

I don’t make this style even if a customer insists.  I would rather miss out on the sale, than have the concern that their bracelet will not last the lifetime I would expect of one of my designs.  

When customers bring them to me to repair, I generally thread the beads onto beading wire and add a clasp.  This can result in a couple of beads left over and these can be turned into simple earrings at no extra charge.  An example of this is pictured below.

Repair Remodelling Service - Originally an elastic bracelet which had broken. I fixed it with a clasp and the extra pearls were made into earrings.

Tired, Outdated or Unloved Designs?

Does your existing beaded jewellery need some TLC?

Your old pieces of damaged or out-dated jewellery can be given a new lease on life because I can repair or remodel them and consequently you will be able to wear them again.

Do you want to remodel your tired old designs?  Do you have some wonderful ideas of what you would like, but not sure how to go about it?  Have you been making a scrapbook or Pinterest board of designs you like?  Are you ready to get that design created?

Have you inherited or been gifted beaded jewellery that is just not right for you? Possibly it is too long or short for you?  Consequently, even though you love the piece you are unable to wear it. 
This can be changed!  The piece below was made a little larger to suit the customer.

repair and remodel: Oroton necklace to make it larger

Request a Free Consultation

And tidy up your jewellery box

Repair and remodel the outdated items in your jewellery box

Do you have a box of bits and pieces?  Have you lost one of the earrings – do you know I can turn it into a charm for a bracelet or even a pendant.  Sometimes I may have similar beads and be able to make something suitable.

If you need extra beads or materials for your chosen design, you can either choose from a large range of beads and findings I have available, supply your own or I can order that “certain” bead in for you.

All costs of the repair will be quoted on before you commit to the project and you will be asked to confirm your acceptance of the costs and the design in writing.  Crafting of the item will not commence until the quote has been accepted and the deposit paid.

I hope you found this page helpful.

The initial consultation is free, and you are under no obligation to continue with the design.

I look forward to working with you and creating some magical designs or mending your existing loved pieces

I would love you to bookmark it for the future, or even better, share it!

chrysocolla-quartz-and-blue-aventurine-tassel-necklace-with-quartz-bracelet-MaxineFaye
Serenity chrysocolla, quartz crystal and sterling silver bracelet

As well as offering a repair and remodelling service, I also have a gorgeous range of original and unique one-of-a-kind pieces available in my online store or you can contact me to arrange a custom made piece – just for you.

 

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