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Mesh and Nets in Jewelry Making - Tutorials and Inspiration

Have you considered using metallic or fabric mesh or nets in your jewelry designs? You should as they add yet another dimension to jewelry making.

This gorgeous tulle necklace tutorial by Kelly Hicks (shown on the right) is one way to get the netted effect. She used marbles (ie no holes!) but I think pearls will look lovely too.

That trapped beads effect can also be achieved with spool knitting using fine gauge wire (28G). Beading Daily has a tutorial on how to spool knit. Viking knitting is another alternative  - more about it another time.

Shown below is the inspirational spool knitted necklace by Rosemary Hill from her book,Elements of Style: Knit and Crochet Jewelry with Wire, Fiber, Felt and Beads. One suggestion I have is to experiment with beading wire rather than the usual coated copper wire. The softer beading wire will result in a different look and a springier feel as you can see in this video which uses Softflex - the video is unfortunately out of focus for virtually the entire time but you`ll get the drift!

Metallic lace ribbon has a number of other names - wire ribbon, tubular mesh beading ribbon and so on.  You don't need to work in a tubular fashion. Treating the mesh like ribbon is another fantastic technique as you can see from the metal mesh necklace tutorial by She used the tube to trap the beads only occasionally.

After googling, I found based in Florence, Italy as a source of Italian tubular wire mesh . Their site is worth a look because they have tips and tutorials on how to make ruffle mesh necklaces like this one below.

Don't discount fabric meshes either even if they aren't very open netted. According to Stylehive, earrings like this Black Mesh Disco earrings by Kou Ting jewelry are a take on Taylor Swift's silver mesh earrings.

Still prefer metal meshes in sheet form rather than fabric?  Check out the Stampington Company wire mesh sheets and Howacoglass' Copper mesh sheets.

One inspirational book I borrowed recently from my library is Chrissie Day's Wire Jewelry: Crocheted, Knitted, Twisted and Beaded. There are a number of projects using pre-knit wire fabric. There's a thought. Knit your own with knitting needles!!

Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
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  1. Great blog topic. I thinking knitting and crocheting with wire is a wonderful way to modernize these techniques. I have knitted and crocheted bracelets. Not sure if you have ever mentioned tubular bead crochet, but it is a neat technique. There is a knitting and crocheting show on PBS (not sure if I can mention the name or not?. They just did a show on making jewelry. Cool!

  2. Great timing, Pearl. Ordered 25 feet of argentium knitted wire last week from Toronto and can't wait to play with it. (Some of us are too lazy to do the knitting ourselves!)

  3. Working with mesh seems to be "in the air," like refashioning costume jewelry. And like all jewelry-making, there's room for each creative Voice!

  4. I used some of the mesh tubing last year...was a fun addition!

  5. What an inspiring post Pearl! Makes me want to add a little more mesh to my polymer clay jewelry! There really are so many creative options. Thank you so much for sharing your links with us!

  6. I heard about your blog from somebody on our Facebook page and I thought I would check it out. Thank you so much for this information, I thought it was fantastic!

  7. Just got my hands on some copper mesh (Stampington)... Hoping there is a way to eliminate the possibility of the edges fraying too much... It's really fun to work with!

  8. I have always seen such necklaces on the net and thought that the whole structure has been hand made...never realised that mesh ribbons are readily available


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