Measuring Tip for Wire, Cord, Chain and More

by Jane Blancher.
(Ontario, Canada)

I taped an aluminum metre stick along the front edge of my work desk and highlighted the common necklace lengths… 35cm, 40cm, 44cm etc. to facilitate cord/chain measuring and cutting.

I found this very advantageous for making bracelets as well!

Jane Blancher
Equine Design

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  • Sue Runyon says:

    I keep a metal yardstick across the front of my jewelry making table for this same purpose. It’s very handy.


  • Sylvie says:

    I have a wooden yardstick glued down to the edge of my workbench. It is so much easier! I didn’t think of highlighting the standard lengths though. That is a great idea.

  • Kim Ryan says:

    Great idea! I’ve mark up my bead mat with my most common measurements so that I’ve got them wherever I use it!

  • I took the first 36″ of a cloth measuring tape and attached it to my desk with Scotch double-sided tape. Works great for me!

  • Pamela Maring says:

    In a similar manner, I taped a ruler to my computer monitor to get a better grasp of bead sizes when ordering. What’s 24mm when I contemplate ordering a bead online? I have fewer disappointments when they arrive. I’m a beading newbie, so I expect I won’t need it for long.

  • Mary Wong says:

    I found a roll of yellow sticky measuring tape (Peel ‘n Stick Measuring Ruler) at Joann’s Fabrics. It only goes up to 12″ but I put 2 segments down on the edge of my table to get 24″. The tape is repositionable; very handy. If it gets too marked up, I unpeel and toss and put down a new stretch. While for some bracelets a flat measurement works, for more bulky beads, I use the EZ Bracelet Mini cone (but I’m not totally confident of that measurement either.)

  • Thanks for these great additional tips! 🙂

  • I thought I was crazy, haha! Glad to know I’m not the only one who has tape measured and taped on the front edge of my desk. Works perfect for all my custom jewelry orders and I’m glad you gave this tip to others because it saves so much time and frustration. That’s what I love about this website: there are so many great artists giving 2 second pieces of information that has literally saved me HOURS of time!


  • Connie says:

    I have also glued a section of tape measure vertically onto a shelf unit next to my work table, so that I can hold up the work and see its length. Also works well for earrings!!

    Rena, thank you for all the information you provide for us!

  • Cheryl Feyen says:

    I did this too. The paper measuring tape from IKEA works great!

  • Karen Watson says:

    Still working on my website..I got really lucky on a business trip (in my former business) and found a sewing table. The top of it opens out to twice it’s size, which would be nice if I was sewing, for cutting out patterns,etc. but it fits well folded down in my studio area. It has 1″ grid marked permanently on top, and along the front edge, has the measurements on it. Some of the pictures I’m taking to redo my website are taken along that measurement marking. I got an awesome deal on it I couldn’t pass up, so that’s how I am set up.
    When I transport any of my work, I use a plastic clipboard like the ones sold for filling out forms, that can hold a supply of forms, On the edge of that, I have marked some common measurements with my trusty Sharpie marker. It is just the right size inside to hold a beading mat, and my beads don’t escape as much since there is a lip all around the mat.
    They also sell a rubberized mat for quilters, that covers the table top. Some of them heal themselves and are used with rotary cutters. They also feature a grid design that would be handy.
    Somewhere on line, (probably on this website?) I found a chart that is simply a picture of a bust, with various necklace lengths marked on it. I printed it out and laminated it. Makes it so much easier to picture where a certain length would go on the body.
    Rena is my “go to” for advice on all things jewelry!

  • Connie Burns says:

    Do a search on Pinterest for “necklace length” and you will find several versions of that chart.

  • Margo Gallinoto says:

    Along with a measuring tape attached to my work table, I taped a clipping from a jewelry catalog when I started ordering beads online. The clipping illustrates the size of beads from 2mm to 24mm and and lists the mm size of each.

  • Thanks for that additional great tip for keeping bead sizes handy, Margo! 🙂

  • Isabelle says:

    Good idea

  • PhyllisC says:

    I found a “fashion” duct tape that is 24″ in 1″ increments ! Works like a charm ( lol, pardon the pun). and like Margo, I have a picture showing the accurate bead sizes too. ( NOT being metrically “inclined” 🙂 ) Makes life so much easier!
    Speaking of measuring, I also have a REAL tape measure fastened to my charm board for shows. Makes it VERY handy when I want to measure a wrist or ankle to make custom bracelet or anklet 🙂

  • I found a chart that I posted online and every jewelry lover/customer who saw it was very grateful to have this chart. It enables them to describe to the custom made jewelry designer exactly what type of necklace they want, saving them a lot time trying to describe the length they want. Here is a chart from LucyLu:

    It makes ordering so much easier for the customer.

    Thank you everyone for your tips. I really appreciate this post.

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