jem Glossary

Jewelry Making Glossary

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Ghanaian powder-glass beads - aka powder-glass beads, sand-cast beads, dry powder-glass beads
These beads originated in the 16th centruy from Ghana, Africa.  They are made from scrap glass (like soft drink bottles) which is finely crushed, layered, coloured, put into a mold and fired.

gilded silver - (see Vermeil)

gimp wire - (see French wire)

gold vermeil - (see Vermeil)

Gunmetal finish - a black finish that is created from heat treatment and chemical baths to form a black oxide coating on metal

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Hammer and block - is useful for metalwork. They are used for flattening wires. You can experiment with household hammers and review the effect of hammering onto textured surfaces.

Head Pin - a long straight pin with a flat or decorative end. They are used to string bead or charms and by looping the end, connect to other parts of a jewellery (e.g. to a chain).
(See also Eye Pin)

Hook and Eye Clasps - is one of the simplest of clasps.  It consist of a simple hook on one side and an eye on the other side.  The hook catches the eye to secure the jewellery piece.  Best used with heavier jewellery pieces.
(see full article on the many Types of Jewelry Clasps)


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Japanese Miracle Bead (see Miracle Bead)

jewelers mandrelJewelers Mandrel - a versatile jewllery making tool that can be made of a variety of material from plastic, wood, or steel. Depending on the needs, mandrels can be found as ring mandrels, bracelet mandrels, necklace mandrels.

Jump Rings jumpringsJump Rings - (also sometimes spelt "jumprings") - wire circles with a split and are used as connectors. There are different sizes and gauges (thickness of wire) to choose from. Jumprings are normally round, though there are also the less common oval, and square rings available. For the round rings, the size is the outer diameter of the ring. A similar jewellery finding is the split ring.
(see full article on Jump Rings)

jewellery pliers - (see full article on Jewellery Pliers)

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Karat - The (gold) karat system is used for denoting the purtiy or the amount of gold in gold alloy by fractions of 24.  For example, "18 karat" in a gold alloy means it sas 18 parts gold per 24 parts.  In other words, 75% gold purity.  "Karat" is the North American spelling for carat (hence the confusion sometomes between the 2 words.  See "carat" for more information.  The millesimal fineness (parts per thousand) is the newer system of (precious metal) purtiy.
(for a fuller article on Gold)

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leather crimpsLeather Crimps - aka Leather Crimp Ends, and end cord connectors.
Leather crimps are used on the end of leather cords and other thick stringing materials.  They have a loops at one end for connecting to a fastener like a clasp.  Some leather crimps have spiral (ie springs) for their bodies - these are called spring ends. Other leather crimps have "flaps" that fold over the thong.  You need pliers to tighten leather crimps over the thong.

Lobster Clasps - aka. Parrot clasps, or Lobster Claw clasps. Very popular and very secure.  Relies on a spring mechanism to close the clasp over a loop or ring on the other end of the necklace/bracelet.
(see full article on the many Types of Jewelry Clasps)

Lochrose - A Swarovski Lochrose is a sew-on crystal stone with one hole in the middle. It is often called a sequin for that reason. Apparently "lochrose" literally means "hole (in a ) rose".

Long Chain Nose Pliers - (see full article on Jewellery Pliers)

Lucite - Lucite is a clear (transparent), strong plastic (a thermoset acrylic resin) that was patented by the DuPont company in 1941. Lucite has a specific gravity of 1.19. Although in its original form it is clear, it can be easily colored to produce a variety of hues and colours.

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