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A beading mystery…solved

A beading mystery solved, Katie Dean, Beadflowers

If you’ve already purchased a copy of my Beaded Nutcracker ornament, or my rose beaded box, then you know I’ve been flummoxed by a beading mystery. In fact, you might have been puzzled by this one too!

Well, I’m happy to bring you the news that I have now solved the mystery…

A beading mystery…

What is this beading mystery, you may ask?

Well, settle back and I’ll tell you a story…

It all began one day when I was looking for some Delicas that were running low. I was sure I had ordered a new packet. But could I find them?…No!

Now, that isn’t a beading mystery. I ‘lose’ bead packets all the time. They usually turn up somewhere later on. So, I wasn’t too bothered.

But I was surprised to find a packet of beads that I had no recollection of ordering. They were a lovely deep red colour. So, when I came to make my beaded Nutcracker, I decided to use this packet of beads.

Beaded Nutcracker Ornament Pattern, Katie Dean, BeadflowersGet the beaded Nutcracker pattern here>>

I made the Nutcracker, published the pattern and thought nothing of it…


Customer questions…

Yes, that’s right. I began to get a few emails from customers who had bought the pattern. They were asking me about the colour code for the red beads. Apparently, it seemed to give them a pink bead, rather than the red I had used.

I was a bit concerned. So, I checked and re-checked…and checked once more. Yes, my beading packet really did give colour number 625.

So, all I could do was apologise and suggest another number for a different red that I’ve used on other projects. My red beads do have a slightly pinkish tinge to them. So, I thought perhaps it was something to do with colour rendering on the computer screen.

A beading mystery solved, Katie Dean, Beadflowers

The emails soon trailed off and I thought no more about it… Until I came to make my rose beaded box.

My own stupidity…

That gorgeous, rich, velvety red seemed like the perfect colour for a rose. I figured that people would probably choose their own colours anyway, so I risked using this one again.

Rose beaded box pattern, Katie Dean, BeadflowersGet the rose beaded box pattern here>>

Well, same thing happened. More enquiries about the colour code.

That’s when the penny finally dropped. Of course, I should have spotted this right away. I know colour code 625 because I’ve been using those beads for over 6 years. Yes, they are (usually) silver lined pink alabaster. That’s the shade I use for donut icing, fondant fancies and battenburg cake in my Sweet Treats book. (Not to mention countless other projects!)

How could I have been so stupid and not realised this immediately?

Get your copy of Sweet Treats book here>>

OK, so I had now established that I wasn’t going mad: the bead packet really did say 625 and really didn’t contain pink alabaster beads. So, I had a beading mystery on my hands… Not just one, but two…

How had I ended up with a wrongly labelled pack – which had come direct from the Miyuki factory?

…And what was the correct colour code for those gorgeous red beads?

A beading mystery solved!

So, how to solve a beading mystery? Well, call on the beading community for starters!

So, I hopped onto Facebook and showed a photo of my ‘mystery’ beads and asked if anyone else could identify the real colour. If you know anything about the beading community, you know how helpful people are.

Within a matter of hours I had several suggestions. Now, if you know anything about beads, you’ll know how hard it is to identify a colour from a photo. So, some of the suggestions definitely weren’t right. But all of them allowed me to check the delica colour codes and descriptions against my own beads.

I had another clue to work with… My pack had a label to warn that these beads had been dyed. So, that proved the clincher.

Thanks to Cath Thomas, who sent a link to a range of Miyuki dyed red beads, I think I’ve identified the correct colour code for my mystery red… DB654.

So, if you are one of the people who has my Nutcracker or Rose beaded box patterns, this is the colour I actually used!

Get the Fondant Fancy beaded box pattern here>>

Thank you Miyuki!

Just to be sure, I also emailed the Miyuki factory to check. Someone had suggested that maybe the colour codes had changed at the factory (what a nightmare that would be). I thought that possibly unlikely, but you never know.

Anyway, Miyuki were so kind and helpful. They have confirmed that my mystery beads were indeed in the wrong packet and they very kindly offered to replace them with the correct beads.

I haven’t worried about that. After all, I’ve enjoyed using those red beads. I’ve discovered a new colour that I love. So, I’ll just have to order more of both colours now!

The important thing is that I had a beading mystery, and now it is solved. I can amend the colour code on the patterns and hopefully that will end the confusion!

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