Helpful Hint for Senior Beaders

by Paula Hisel.
(Nicholasville, Kentucky USA)


I have been in the jewelry design business for 6 years, and about 8 months ago I was blessed with the opportunity to start teaching jewelry design classes.

The majority of my classes are held in senior centers and nursing homes. Because of the various physical limitations of my senior students, I have learned to alter my teaching techniques to adjust to their needs.

Due to vision difficulties, we use large holed beads and simple elastic string found in the sewing/craft department.

Many of my students suffer from severe arthritis, so it is hard to grip the string for long periods of time. It is crushing to them to drop their beads, especially when they have spent so much time working on them.

I started tying a keyring (large silver split ring) on the end of the string. The keyring slips on their finger like a regular ring, giving them greater control over their string, and making it harder to drop. Any large sized ring, like drapery rings, will work.

It has drastically reduced the amount of “drops” we have in class.

When they are finished stringing their beads, we tie it in a traditional square knot and cut the keyring off.

Just making these few adjustments has led to much happier students and larger class sizes.

Paula Hisel
Simply Beadiful

Information contained in this website should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice. No products mentioned in this post have been tested or endorsed by Rena Klingenberg.


For senior beaders
by: Dita

Paula, You are so thoughtful to add these solutions.

I use a scotch tape at the end of a string and stick it to my beading tray or table top, this had helped me too.

Keep up your good work. Dita

new beaders
by: Cory

Very innovative… there is nothing worse than having beads suddenly drop and scatter.

Jewelry making workshop with Senior beaders
by: Rena

What a great idea, Paula! I love the idea of a jewelry making activity with Seniors, and that the finished project is one they can wear easily without dealing with a clasp.

And your ring innovation for making the project easier and less frustrating is fantastic.

Thanks so much for sharing this great idea!

Creative and Helpful Too!
by: Valerie J

What an innovative way to help your seniors stay involved and creative! I love that you are helping them stay active and explore ways to make beautiful projects at the same time. Bravo!

by: Debbie

I love this idea. My hands go numb at very wierd times. So this keyring idea will really help. Thank you

beading with senoirs <

by: Cheryl

Thank you for this great idea! Do you have any more helpful suggestions when one person is working with varied degrees of abilities 16-20 “Beading Beauties”?

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