How to Use Wire Lace

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What can you do with it...

Spread it or stretch it out flat. Gently pull the edges of the lace ribbon away from the center. It holds it\'s new shape surprsingly well. If you have heavy beads on your lace with no support, you will find the weight of the beads pulls the lace back straight again. Always support your heavier designs somehow (see more notes on supporting your designs below). 

Put beads inside it. Wire Lace is a tubular ribbon. That means you can put things inside of it. Small beads inside the lace offer an element of depth and textural variety that can be fun to explore. Be sure your beads are not too large, however. The more you stretch out the mesh, the more you stress it as well. A large bead may cause the mesh to weaken and break. 

Knot it. Wire Lace is a metal, but it is also similar to fabric ribbon and can be knotted when desired. Make sure your knots are where you want them! Untying and re-tying mesh lace may cause it to fray. 

Include it in a multi-strand design. When you are designing a piece with several strands, make one of the strands a ribbon of Wire Lace. It is especially effective to use the mesh ribbon in twisted or braided pieces where the ribbon is intermingled and entwined with your other beads. The other, non-lace strands will support the piece so its weight won\'t interfere with the integrity of the mesh design. 

Thread a ribbon through it. Use a similar color or a contrasting color fabric ribbon to slide inside the tubular mesh. This will help enhance the inherent texture of the Wire Lace because it has a solid color inside of it.

Embroider or weave beads onto it. You can even sew beads onto a ribbon or backing through the Wire Lace to make the beads appear to be floating or set directly on top of the mesh. Try doing a bead weaving stitch with small seed beads this way, using the Wire Lace as a backdrop. 

Twist it into a small cord. Gently roll the lace into a slim cord so you can thread beads onto it or to simply have a cord-look for part of your design. Putting a dab of Hypo-Tube Cement on the tip will keep the mesh from fraying. If you need a very fine tip, it may help to cut the ribbon at an angle before twisting and glueing. Also, avoid using beads that have rough interiors as they may snag the lace.

Support it with Soft Flex wire or other stringing materials. Thread a stronger stringing material through your Wire Lace in order to support the weight of the beads you are using. Use Nymo, Soft Flex, Silk, ribbon, or anything else that fits your design! 

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