Remember my announcement about being accepted as one of Prima Bead's (Cousin subsidiary) blogging partners?  Well, here is the first month's design challenge using their new stainless steel findings!

The stainless steel findings were part of the welcome package we all received.  It was like Christmas in July as I certainly wasn't expecting this!

I was really keen to try out Prima Bead's stainless steel findings.  I had previously purchased jewelry grade stainless steel wire which is softer to work with than the kind you get in the hardware store. But I had not come across good enough stainless steel components....until now.

Why do I like stainless steel?  There are several reasons :
  • doesn't tarnish
  • really strong and durable
  • resistance to tool marks
  • shiny metallic color
  • hypo-allergenic
  • not magnetic  (you don't want it attach to other findings!)
There are actually different grades of stainless steel including some which contain nickel, the usual culprit for metal allergies. So it is important for people with metal allergies like myself that the kind used does not contain any nickel.   I made myself a pair of earrings and tested the stainless steel used by wearing them for several days.  The stainless steel passed with flying colors!

I was really impressed with the quality of the stainless steel chain I used for this Reflections mirror bead wire wrapped pendant design. I managed to include 2 of the irregular cut light blue and grey beads I didn't use the last time in addition to other mirror beads I had on hand.

The mirror beads were neutral in color. So I did some very light funky wire wrapping with the sapphire blue coated copper wire to infuse the design with a little more color but still allowed the stainless steel wire to show through.

Naturally the earrings to match! The stainless steel stud earrings were a nice change from the ball style.

The welcome box also contained these Crystazzi bicones so I used the red ones for the next pendant design.

I used a stainless steel headpin to form a bail and to connect together the aluminum flower, red rondelle crystal and the go-go hematite focal with the help of some wire wrapping with 28G red coated copper wire.   I had no qualms about doing this because stainless steel is very strong. This headpin also did extra duty as a place to hang the 3 other bead laden headpins at the back! 

As for the earrings I made to test out the stainless steel, check the tutorial!

We haven't all posted yet but I would like to introduce my fellow Prima Blogging Team members now:
Cheryl Boglioli  
Jennifer Priest    
Kerrie Slade       
Krafty Max Originals
Kristi Taylor       
Lisa Fulmer                   
Molly Alexander  
Rachel Nielson   
Stefanie Girard   


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Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
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