A stop bead is any kind of bead that is attached to the tail end of your thread. It prevents the beads in your project from falling off the end of the thread and is not usually part of the final beadwork.
It is good practice to use a bead that is easily identified as being separate to your final jewelry. You can do this by selecting a bead that is a different size, shape or colour. This is important so you do not accidentally incorporate the stop bead into your beadwork.
How To Attach A Stop Bead
This process is quite simple.
With the required length of thread attached to the needle, pick up one bead that is not going to be used in your jewelry.
Slide the bead near the end of the thread and pass the needle back through the bead from the tail end. This forms a loop around the bead and prevents it from moving.
Slide the bead so that the recommended number of inches is left from the tail end of the thread to add the clasp. If using a beading pattern, the instructions usually tell you how much thread is needed. If not, 8-10 inches is a good amount of thread.
How To Remove A Stop Bead
When it is no longer needed, slide the stop bead off your thread to remove by simply sliding it .
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In the event that you have split your thread when adding the stop bead, i.e. sewn through the strands that are woven together to form your thread, you can crush the bead with a Flat-nose pliers.