Calottes and Beading Wire

by Jules.

Calottes and Beading Wire?  - Discussion on Jewelry Making Journal

Calottes and Beading Wire? – Discussion on Jewelry Making Journal

I’m always looking for better ways to finish off necklaces.

I mostly use the crimp bead and crimp cover…or to avoid that, I use chain and wire wrapped links.

The other day I saw a pin about using calottes to finish off beading wire necklaces.

A calotte and a crimp bead are strung on one end of a bead wire.

The crimp is squashed flat and the calotte is used to cover the crimp and the top loop is attached to a clasp.

It looks clean and neat.

My question is : has anyone used this method with success?

And if it is a good way to end a necklace…why aren’t more jewelry designers using it?

I like the way it looks….but is it secure?

Thank you for any input.

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  • Yes, I’ve used calottes to finish off a string of beads and join them to the chain. They do look nice and clean. As for the strength, it fully depends on how you end your wire that you are covering with the calotte. I’ve seen many just place a crimp bead on the end of the wire and crimp flat. This is a failure waiting to happen. The wire eventually slips out of the crimp. However, if you fold over the wire and crimp as usual but without leaving a large loop at the end, that usually stays firm.

  • Cat @ CatManDo! Studio says:

    The ladies in the beading class I attended when first starting to bead, showed me how to use a calotte by inserting a stop bead (a small bead with the stringing thread fed back through it twice), (with or without a crimp), then securing the stop bead in the calotte with a small dab of glue ir nail polish, then feeding the thread back through the string of beads for an inch ir so.

    I used that method briefly, but much prefer to use crimps with a cover and jump ring, for better security.

  • Debi says:

    If you are talking about clamshell covers, I use to use them until I found crimp covers. They are the best in my opinion. They never come apart. I love them.

  • Jules says:

    Thank you Richard for the response about how to strengthen an ending like this.

  • Jules says:

    Thank you Cat. Seems like the responses are that the idea isn’t very secure.

  • Jules says:

    Thank you Debi.
    Looks like everyone is on the same page here…the idea isn’t secure.
    Now I can stop wondering.

  • Jean says:

    Squashing the crimp bead flat should be strong enough as long as you squash from each side. I always used this method in my jewelry classes and never had a problem with it not holding.

  • Constance Nelson says:

    I have tried this but it is difficult to finish off the 2nd end after everything is strung and and a crimp and calotte is attached to one end. There is just so little room for crimpers or pliers. Do you have any hints or tricks for this?

  • I’ve got a special pair of pliers that squishes the crimp into a little round ball that looks very neat – just like another bead in fact. It only works with a 2mm sterling silver crimp and hasn’t failed me yet.

  • Note from Rena: This helpful comment is from Kim in South Africa:

    The method I use for calottes is to use 2 crimps spaced a little apart.

    Thread the wire through the hole in the calotte. Squash 2 crimps on the wire a little apart.
    Dot a small amount of glue. Bend the second crimp back, over the first.
    Then cut the wire flush with the second crimp.

    Close the culotte.
    This method is quite secure.

    Kind regards

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