From earliest times, sparkling gems have captivated our attention. Generally, it was only the nobility or very rich who could afford to have jewelry made from precious stones. So, jewelers sought out alternate cheaper sources to make sparkling jewelry at a lower cost. The discovery of natural rhinestones along the Rhine River provided a supply for a time. When this natural source became depleted, jewelers looked for a way to make them.
In the early 1700’s a breakthrough came. A French jeweler by the name of Georg Friedrich Strass developed imitation gems later called rhinestones. He discovered that coating a piece of glass with metal powder created a shimmer in glass, similar to a gemstone. The novelty caught on although the imitations were still very expensive. Cutting each rhinestone by hand was labor intensive.
Nonetheless, crafting rhinestones blossomed in Bohemia, now the Czech Republic. Individual skilled artisans honed their craft producing their version of rhinestones. One of these skilled craftsmen, Daniel Swarovski, patented an electric cutting machine. This new machine cut crystal more precisely and quickly than by hand. In 1895, he moved to Austria and opened his own manufacturing plant. Meanwhile, those individual companies in Bohemia eventually merged in 1948 to form the Preciosa brand.
Today, there are many other manufacturers of rhinestones in a wide variety of shapes and colors. The Asian markets in particular, produce a large number of quality crystal rhinestones. While there are different brands of rhinestones, they all share some of the same characteristics.
Types of Rhinestones
Typically, there are 3 main rhinestone types: crystal, glass or acrylic. Rhinestones manufactured from crystal are the most expensive rhinestones. Primarily, crystal is glass mixed with lead or other components which make it clearer and prismatic. The prismatic effect is the ability to take light and break it up similar to a prism. Because of the safety concerns with lead, Swarovski and Preciosa no longer use lead in making their crystal. Both companies have achieved this without losing any sparkle from the rhinestone. This means that both types of rhinestones are CPSIA compliant and are safe for use with children.
Similar to crystal, glass rhinestones have a coating to produce a shimmer in the rhinestone as well as facets. However, glass rhinestones do not have the prismatic quality of crystal. Nevertheless, glass rhinestones typically are precision cut by machine. Occasionally, you may see rhinestones listed as DMC or MC. These rhinestones are Asian machine cut rhinestones and they may be either crystal or glass.
Finally, there are the acrylic rhinestones, the most inexpensive of all. Formed from molds, acrylic rhinestones do have facets which produce some sparkle. Acrylic rhinestones are a great choice for children’s crafts because they’re lead-free and very inexpensive.
Confused about some of the rhinestone choices? Rhinestones Etc. has a large selection of rhinestones at discount prices. We’ll be glad to answer any questions you have regarding rhinestones. You can contact us here.
Rhinestones Quality is based on Color, Cut, Contour, and Clarity
When shopping for expensive gems, jewelers recommend examining a specimen for the 4 C’s: color, cut, clarity, and carat. The grade of each of these components helps determine the gem’s value. Although slightly different, rhinestones also have 4 C’s: color, cut, clarity, contour.
Chiefly, there are many different rhinestone colors and your color choice affects the price. Crystal or clear rhinestones are the least expensive. Aurum, a gold rhinestone with a thin coating of 14k gold is the most expensive. However, within each color, the hue, tone, and saturation must be the same for consistency. The trueness and intensity of color must be the replicated throughout. Variations in color are the mark of cheaper rhinestones.
Next, cut refers to the facets. Facets are the small plane surfaces cut into the rhinestone that reflect the light. The more facets, the more light reflects and hence the rhinestone has more sparkle. Swarovski makes a rhinestone with the most facets, 16 arranged in a star shape pattern called the Xirius. Preciosa manufactures a rhinestone named Maxima with 15 facets. Other rhinestone manufacturers cut between 8 and 12 facets into their rhinestones. Generally, the more facets, the more expensive the rhinestone.
Chiefly, clarity is the lucidity or clearness of the rhinestone. The rhinestone should be free from spots, streaks or bubbles. Any type of cloudiness in the rhinestone is the mark of an inexpensive brand.
Finally, contour refers to the consistency of the shape of the rhinestone. Typically, the shape of the rhinestone also determines its price. Round rhinestones are generally the least expensive, while fancy shapes such as baguette, navette, and others more costly. Size also affects the pricing, with rhinestones increasing in price with the size.
Hot Fix Rhinestones
One type of rhinestone is the hot fix which has glue attached to the flat side. To adhere, you can use a hot fix tool, iron or heat press. Swarovski, a manufacturer of rhinestones, recommends a temperature range of 250 degrees F – 340 degrees F to activate the glue.
If you choose to use an iron, you will need one without steam vents. Irons with vents don’t provide a flat surface and consequently inadequate pressure when applying rhinestones. Also, water and steam can negatively affect the hot fix application. Never slide the iron as this may move the rhinestones. Always press down the iron and lift straight up before applying heat elsewhere.
Another way to attach hot fix rhinestones is with a hot fix tool. These tools come with different screw-on tips to accommodate different size rhinestones. To attach, you lay the rhinestones on a flat surface, facet side up. Heat up your tool, then place the tip over the top of the rhinestone. The rhinestone will stick in the cup of the tip. After about 15 seconds, the glue will begin to bubble. Tap the rhinestone onto the fabric and the rhinestone will stick. Don’t press too hard as this can cause the glue to spread and the rhinestone to stick in the cup. Allow the rhinestones to cool, which takes only a few minutes.
Unfortunately, there are some fabrics that are just not suitable for hot fix application. These include very tightly woven textiles, smooth leather or smooth imitation leather, and thin fabrics like organza. To check to see if your fabric is suitable for hot fix rhinestones, apply several drops of water. If the fabric absorbs the water droplet quickly, you can use hot fix rhinestones on it. Alternately, if the water pearls, the fabric is not suitable for hot fix rhinestones.
Flat Back Rhinestones
Another type of rhinestone is the non-hot fix or commonly referred to flat back. One way to attach flat backs or non-hot fix rhinestones is by gluing. There are a variety of rhinestone glues on the market. Some provide a better bond on certain surfaces than others. Be sure to check the manufacturer’s instructions for recommendations. Additionally, some glue manufacturers do not recommend using their product on cheaper rhinestones like acrylics.
For example, E6000 is an industrial strength glue that produces a strong bond to smooth surfaces. It works great on metal and glass. Alternately, Gem-Tac is a great fabric glue that’s easy to apply, dries clear and is washable. There are some other adhesives like Swarovski’s 2-part epoxy, Beacon’s Fabri-Tac and such. Just make sure whichever you use, its suitable for rhinestones, dries clear and if gluing to clothes, washable.
One of the key components in gluing rhinestones to clothing is the method. Many people use too little glue causing the rhinestone to peel off. It’s very important that some of the glue seeps out the sides of the rhinestone. This forms a seal to keep the rhinestone in place.
Other Methods of Attaching Rhinestones
Generally, there are some other ways of attaching rhinestones to fabrics: metal settings and sew-on rhinestones. To begin with, there are 2 types of metal settings, Tiffany and rim. Their basic difference is one secures form the inside of the garment and the other from the outside. In particular, a rim setting surrounds the rhinestone on the right side of the fabric. The prongs pierce and bend on the inside of the garment to secure the rhinestone. Whereas Tiffany settings have metal prongs pierce through to the outside of the fabric to grab the rhinestone. These prongs bend around the rhinestone to hold it into place.
Uniquely, sew-on rhinestones have pre-drilled holes in the crystal allowing a needle to pass through. Sew-0n rhinestones are available in a large variety of shapes. Similarly, a Rose Montee is a rhinestone set in a metal setting that has cross channels on the bottom. A needle easily passes through the cross channels thus, making them easy to sew on. Moreover, thin wire can pass through these channels as well, making Rose Montees ideal for jewelry making.
Sizing of Rhinestones
Admittedly, the sizing of rhinestones is unique and different. The system goes back to when rhinestones were a natural resource of sparkling quartz. Finders of these sparkling quartz stones grouped them according to their size by dropping them into different size holes. This gave the sparkling quartz a number “stone size“ or “ss”. Larger size sparkling quartz had larger numbers and smaller sized quartz smaller. Even though this natural resource no longer exists, rhinestone manufacturers still use this system of measurement.
Usually, retailers of rhinestones will give the equivalent millimeter size adjacent to the “ss” size so you can compare. Sometimes, too, retailers will have a sizing chart with a picture of the size of that particular rhinestone. You can view our millimeter/ss size chart here.
When trying to figure out how many rhinestones you need for a project will depend on the size you choose. This is especially true when you’re covering an item with rhinestones. For example, size 20ss is 4.7mm and you need about 29 rhinestones to cover 1 square inch. Compare this to size 12ss which is 3.1mm requiring 67 rhinestones to cover 1 square inch. Of course, the type of project you’re working on may influence your choice of size as well. For instance, you probably want smaller stones for rhinestones your nails yet larger rhinestones for embellishing your wedding dress.
Still confused about the right choice of rhinestone for your project? Rhinestones Etc. would love to help! Drop us a line here, and we’ll get back to you quickly with an answer. We’ve been selling rhinestones for over 10 years. Our focus is to provide you with the best quality rhinestones and the cheapest price possible. And now, get free shipping with your first purchase!
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Rhinestone jeans are a hot fashion item. However, most retail rhinestone jeans use the cheaper less flashier rhinestones. And jeans that use higher quality rhinestones are quite pricey.
Then sometimes you just have a favorite brand that you like to wear. That pair that fits so well and feels so great and it is your go-to jeans. But, sometimes even your favorite pair can use a face lift or upgrade. How about adding some bling? Why not embellish them with some rhinestones? You can buy your favorite brand and embellish them yourself and for a lot less than retail.
Can you DIY Rhinestone Jeans?
Will rhinestones stick to denim? Yes. Even though denim is a thick material, you can glue rhinestones to jeans. My favorite fabric glue is Gem-Tac and it works well for gluing to denim. It dries clear, is washable and the flow is easy to control. Additionally, is E6000 another popular choice for gluing rhinestones to fabric.
The most important thing to remember when gluing rhinestones is to make sure some of the glue seeps out from the sides of the rhinestone. This produces a seal which helps protect the rhinestone from peeling off. Place a drop of glue slightly smaller than the rhinestone on your jeans and gently press the rhinestone into the glue drop. Some of glue should ooze out from the sides.
Some ideas to get you started on your Rhinestone jeans
Now that you’ve decided to embellish your jeans with rhinestones, what next? If you are a beginner, you can start with something simple. Put a few rhinestones on the back pockets. Simply glue a straight line of rhinestones along the top edge of the pocket. Shift lines and use multiple colors for a more intricate design.
Another idea is to use fabric paint and rhinestones. Use a stencil and fabric paint a design on a pant leg of your jeans. Craft stores are great places to find stencils. A trick I like to use is to copy designs out of embroidery books on card stock. Using an X-acto knife, cut out the insides and you’ve got yourself a stencil. Embellish parts of the design with rhinestones to make it pop.
There are so many ways to personalize your jeans with rhinestones. Search the internet for ideas to get inspired. Release your imagination to make you own unique pair of rhinestone jeans.
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Because fashion changes often, keeping abreast of the latest fad is expensive. Yet, the holidays are just around the corner and with it all the holiday parties. However, you can’t attend each one wearing the same dress, but you can’t afford a new splashy dress for each event. Can you stay trendy while sticking to a budget?
Stay Trendy by Creating a Rhinestone Dress
As a matter of fact, you can look great without spending a bucket of money. Refreshing an old dress by adding rhinestones to it gives it a new feel. Or you can also pick up a dress on clearance or at Goodwill and make it stand out by adding rhinestones.
Whichever you decide will look fabulous and no one will know how little you spent.
What if you’ve never glued rhinestones before? Gluing rhinestones is easy. Continue reading to find out just how easy.
How to DIY Rhinestone Dress
I picked up this dress for $15. Adding about 144 rhinestones or 1 gross to the bodice will cost about $7. Prices of the rhinestones depend on the brand, size, color and retailer from whom you purchase. For this project, I used 12ss crystal rhinestones. Since the dress already had a pattern, I offset the rhinestones in between the pattern of the dress.
Gem Tac is the brand of glue I prefer for clothing. It is washable, dries clear and is easy to apply.
Before you start gluing, wash and dry your garment before gluing rhinestones. Lay your garment on a flat surface. If the material is sheer, you can place a piece of wax paper between layers.
Begin by placing a drop of glue slightly smaller than the rhinestone on the garment. Pick up a rhinestone using a wax tipped tool or tweezers. Gently press the rhinestone into the glue drop. Some of the glue should seep out from the edges. This makes a seal and helps prevent the rhinestone from peeling off.
Continue gluing rhinestones in this manner. When done, allow to dry flat for 24 hours.
Feel beautiful in your Rhinestone Dress
Even by adding just a gross of rhinestones makes a huge difference in this dress. And you now have a glamorous, fashionable dress without going over budget. Experiment with different sizes and colors to create a different look each time. Stay trendy and fashionable and save yourself a pile of money by embellishing with rhinestones.
Rhinestones Etc has quality rhinestones at discount prices and now you can save even more by getting free shipping on your first order. Just click on the button above to get your coupon code!
Rhinestones add that special touch of dazzling sparkle. You’ve seen them on dresses, boots, and sneakers. But the important question is can rhinestone stick to anything? Just about! You can stick rhinestones to virtually any surface: glass, metal, fabric, and leather to name a few. More precisely, the questions should be, what glue or adhesive is good for the surface I am working on.
Different brand glues work better on some surfaces and some glues are just easier to work with. Once you know your adhesive, you can glue rhinestones to many, many surfaces.
Best Rhinestones Adhesives for Fabrics
Because the most common surface to glue rhinestone to is fabric, I’ll start with some good fabric adhesives. Beacon brand makes two different adhesives: Fabric-Tac and Gem-Tac. Fabric-Tac is solely for fabrics. Be careful as it is not recommended for use with acrylic rhinestones. Gem-tac is another one of Beacon’s adhesives and it bonds to more than just fabric. It also works on wood, suede, glass, vinyl and metal. Additionally, it is easy to apply and generally considered non-toxic. Dry cleaning is not recommended.
Next up is an adhesive that is made specifically for stretchy surfaces. Aleene’s Flexible/Stretchable glue is specifically made for us on T-shirts, knits, dancewear and socks.
Rhinestone Adhesives for other surfaces
E6000 is another popular glue. It provides a strong bond for these surfaces: fabrics, wood glass, plastic, tile, metal, ceramic, rubber, vinyl, leather cement and styrofoam. Keep in mind that this glue must be used in a well-ventilated area. Many people don’t like E6000 because of potential toxicity. However, as long as you follow the manufacturer’s instructions, you should not experience any difficulties.
If you prefer to avoid E6000 but want a strong glue, you may want to try Swarovski 2-part Epoxy Resin. This adhesive bonds to metal, rubbers, synthetics and glass. In keeping with Swarovski’s pledge for a healthy environment, it is not toxic, corrosive, hazardous or dangerous.
So, the next time you are considering a bling project, think about rhinestone adhesives first. What surface you will be gluing to will determine which glue you should use.
Thinking of starting a rhinestone project? Rhinestones Etc. has quality rhinestones while providing excellent customer service. And now you can get free shipping on your first purchase by clicking the button above!
Alcohol ink washer necklaces are the latest fashion and I love the look of them. You take a simple item, a washer from the hardware store, color it with alcohol ink and you have a work of art. Simply attach a cord and you have a stunning necklace. Add rhinestones to make your necklace stand out even more.
For this project I used:
½ and ¾ inch washers
Alcohol ink markers
Various rhinestone colors in size 12ss
Wax tipped tool or tweezers
Cord end caps
4 mm jump rings
Krylon clear matte acrylic coating
How to Make Washer Necklaces
One of my daughters is a very good abstract artist. Some of her artwork is on Facebook as ArtisticallySweet and Instagram as @megcatdragon. She colored the washers with alcohol ink markers.
Once the ink dries, you will want to put a clear protective coating on it. Krylon brand which is easy to apply and dries in 10-15 minutes. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions when applying.
I picked some coordinating rhinestones colors in size 12ss to enhance the washers with.
When gluing rhinestones to metal, I like to use E6000 because of the strong bond. Use in a well-ventilated area and always follow the manufacturer’s instructions. E6000 can be a bit gloppy, so I squeeze E6000 over a paper plate and use a toothpick to apply to glue. Then using tweezers or wax tipped tool, pick up a rhinestone and gently press it into the glue. Continue gluing rhinestones and then allow to dry for 24 hours.
For the cord, I used embroidery floss. It comes in many colors, so you are sure to find one that will coordinate with your necklace. Measure your neck to see where you want the necklace to lay. You can use one long piece of floss, or as I did, two shorter pieces. I cut mine 27 inches long. Fold the floss in half to form a loop at the one end. Pull this loop from underneath the washer up through the hole. Take the two loose ends, put them through the loop and pull to tighten. Do the same for the other piece of floss.
Trim the ends of the floss so they are even. Then taking a cord end clasp, lay the ends of the embroidery floss in the clasp and using jewelry pliers, bend the first side over then the other to secure the ends.
On one end add a jump ring and lobster clasp and on the other just a jump ring.
Stunning, aren’t they? And so simple to make. Unleash your creative side and make some washer necklaces for every outfit!
Are you ready to make your own washer necklaces and need some rhinestones? Rhinestones and wax tipped tools are available from: www.RhinestonesEtc.com
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Accessorizing an outfit can really add that extra something and make it stand out. Adding just the right jewelry can really impact how you feel about yourself. You can go from pretty to beautiful just by adding the right touch. But it isn’t always easy to find the right jewelry to match an outfit. Once you see how simple it is to create your own rhinestone stud earrings, you’ll be making a pair to match every outfit.
For this project I used:
Flat post earrings and backings
Tweezers or wax tipped tool
How to Make a Pair of Rhinestones Stud Earrings
Most craft stores have a large jewelry supply section. So, you should have no trouble finding some flat post earrings and backings. I have a nickel allergy and was happy the ones I found were nickel free.
When I glue rhinestones to metal, I like to use E6000. It provides a good adhesion to metal. Always make sure you use it in a well-ventilated area and follow the manufacturers instructions. Also, I found that you can use slightly less glue when using E6000 than other adhesives because it provides such a strong bond.
Start by applying E6000 to the flat part of the earring stud. Using a toothpick when applying E6000 helps to make sure you have the right amount as E6000 tends to be gloppy. Then, pick up a rhinestone using tweezers, or a wax tipped tool. Gently press the rhinestone into the glue. Do the same for the other earring stud. Allow to dry for 24 hours.
Super easy to make and as nice looking as those expensive department store earrings. Plus, you can make a different colored pair for every outfit you own without blowing your budget. Happy crafting!
Rhinestones are available from: www.RhinestonesEtc.com.
If you are new to rhinestones, you may be confused by the choices of sizes, colors and manufacturers. There are acrylic or crystal rhinestones, hot fix or non-hot fix, round, square or practically any shape imaginable. Not to mention all the many colors available. So many choices and where to begin?
While there are many rhinestone options today, this was not always the case. Once upon a time, rhinestones were a naturally occurring resource. Quartz mixed with lead pebbles were found along the banks of the Rhine River, one of Europe’s greatest rivers. Eventually, this natural resource became depleted, and in 1715 the Czech company, Preciosa, developed a way to manufacture rhinestones. Daniel Swarovski originally worked for Preciosa and left to open his own company in 1895. Today, there are many manufacturers of crystal rhinestones as well as acrylic rhinestones.
Types of Rhinestones
Crystal rhinestones, those made by Swarovski, Preciosa and other manufacturers are laser cut. Different manufacturers have different number of facets. Keep in mind, that the more facets a rhinestone has, the more light it reflects. The Xiruis Rhinestone manufactured by Swarovski, has a whopping 16 facets. Preciosa Rhinestones have 12 facets. Should you decide to buy a non-brand name rhinestone, be sure to check on the number of facets as it will affect its sparkle.
Additionally, crystal rhinestones break up the light like a prism. Rhinestones sparkle so beautifully because of this prismatic effect combined with the number of facets. In 2012, Swarovski patented a new lead-free crystal formula making their stones CPSIA compliant. CPSIA laws govern lead content in items for children. For this reason, Swarovski is a good choice for parents who have children ice skating, dancing, or in participating other activities.
Acrylic rhinestones are molded rhinestones and while the facets do reflect the light, they do no have the prismatic effect of crystal. Inexpensive and lead free make acrylic rhinestones a good choice for children’s crafts.
The 4 C’s
Key points to keep in mind If you are planning on using a non-name brand rhinestone: the four C’s: color, cut, contour and clarity.
What about that “ss” size?
Originally, when rhinestones were found along the banks of the Rhine River, they were measured in “stone sizes” or “ss”. Although natural rhinestones are no longer, the “ss” system of measurement is still in use today. The smaller the number next to the “ss”, the smaller the rhinestones. Likewise, the larger number next to the “ss”, the larger the rhinestones. And the smaller the rhinestone, the more you will need to cover an area. By the same token, the larger the rhinestone, the less you will need to cover an area. Most retailers will also give the millimeter size.
Below is a conversion chart from ss to millimeters:
ss mm ss mm ss mm
3 1.4 8 2.35 20 4.7
4 1.6 9 2.65 30 6.41
5 1.8 10 2.85 34 7.17
6 2.0 12 3.1 40 8.54
7 2.15 16 3.9 48 11.11
There are two things to consider when applying rhinestones. First, the surface and then the type of rhinestone. Some adhesives provide a more permanent bond to some surfaces. Beacon’s Gem Tac is a great all-purpose glue. Gem Tac is recommended for fabric, wood, suede, glass, vinyl and metal.
E6000 is another adhesive suitable for just about any type of surface. Recommended for all the surfaces as Gem Tac as well as plastic, tile, ceramic, cement, rubber, leather and Styrofoam. However, this glue is a bit harder to work with as it’s thicker and harder to apply. Keep in mind that this glue dries quickly and must be used in a well-ventilated area.
Be careful as some adhesives are not recommended for use with Acrylic rhinestones. Beacon’s Fabri-Tac and E6000 are not recommended for use with these types of rhinestones. Always check the glue manufacturer’s instructions and the supplier of your rhinestones for the best adhesive to use.
How to attach Rhinestones to Fabric
After you pick your adhesive, you are ready to glue. Prewash whatever garment you are applying rhinestones to. Squeeze a drop of glue slightly smaller than the rhinestone on your fabric. Using a tweezer or wax tipped tool, pick up the rhinestone and gently press it into the glue drop. Some glue should seep out of the edges of the rhinestone. This makes a seal and helps to prevent the rhinestone from peeling off. Allow to dry flat for 24 hours.
Hot fix rhinestones are rhinestones with glue on the bottom. These can be adhered to fabric using a hot fix tool or a hot iron without steam. A hot fix tool is a wand with different size tips for the various size rhinestones. Position the rhinestones crystal side up, heat the tool, then vertically position the wand over the item you want to pick up. With a light touch, pick up the item in the cup at the end of the tip. It will stick in the tip. Depending on your type of wand, wait 10-15 seconds for the glue to heat (you will see it bubble). Gently tap the tip onto the fabric and the rhinestone will stick. Too much pressure will cause the rhinestone to stick in the tip so make sure you use a light touch. In a few minutes the glue will cool, and the rhinestone will be securely attached.
Another nifty tool is hot fix transfer paper. You can make complicated designs or lettering by laying rhinestones on the sticky side, then simply use an iron without steam to apply. The recommended temperature for glue activation by Swarovski is a temperature range of 120°C to 170°C (250°F to 340°F).
Due to a lack of absorbency, some fabrics are not suitable for use with hot fix rhinestones. These include tightly woven fabrics, very thin fabrics such as organza, leather or imitation leather as well as fabrics treated with water-repellent treatments, stain-resistant treatments and easy-to-care treatments.
Other Methods for Attaching Rhinestones
Two other ways of attaching rhinestones to fabric are sewing and metal settings. Sew-ons are rhinestones with predrilled holes for sewing. Simply sew the rhinestone on with a needle and thread through the holes. Rhinestones with metal settings that have channels on the back such as Rose Montees can be used for sewing as well.
There are two types of metal settings, tiffany and rim. Tiffany settings enter from the back of the fabric, the rhinestone is placed in the middle of the prongs and then prongs fold over the front of the rhinestone. Rim settings fit over the top of the rhinestone and the prongs are pushed into the fabric and folded on the backside of the fabric. There are also rhinestones already attached to metal settings such as Rose Pins.
How Many Rhinestones will I need?
What is the size area you are covering and are you completely covering it with rhinestones? And yes, it involves math.
For a straight line of rhinestones:
Step A. Multiply the number of inches by 25.4
Step B. Then divide your answer by the millimeter size of the rhinestone. So for:
3.1 for 12ss (3.1 is the mm size for 12ss rhinestones)
3.9 for 16ss (3.9 is the mm size for 16ss rhinestones)
4.76 for 20ss (4.76 is the mm size for 20ss rhinestones)
If you are covering a large area with rhinestones you will need this formula:
Step A. Find the area by multiplying the width and length of the area you wish to rhinestone.
Step B. Multiply the answer in Step 1 by
67.14 for 12ss rhinestones
42.41 for 16ss rhinestones
29.20 for 20ss rhinestones
The answer will be the amount of rhinestones you will need to cover that area. If you are still confused or need help in figuring out how many rhinestones you will need, contact us here at Rhinestones Etc and we will be glad to help you do the math.
What Color Rhinestones Should I use?
Much of choosing a color is preference but choosing certain colors will give your project a certain look. Choosing a rhinestone the same color as the background will provide sparkle while blending in. A contrasting color will pop while providing sparkle.
Not sure what color to use? Popular colors, crystal and crystal AB are good choices. Both colors look great with anything. Crystal is a clear rhinestone while Crystal AB is a clear rhinestone with an Aurore Boreale (AB) coating that gives the rhinestone a rainbow look. Crystal AB rhinestones are great at picking up and reflecting back the surrounding color.
Is your Head spinning from all this information? Do you have more questions than answers? Don’t hesitate to contact the friendly staff at Rhinestones Etc. We love to help people with their projects.
Many years ago, when my daughter figure skated, I remember feeling very intimidated at gluing crystals to fabric. I was afraid of using too much glue, and also gluing the crystals in the wrong place. A good friend of mine offered to help me as she had embellished her children’s dance costumes several times. Once I got over my fear, I saw how easy it was. So, today, I am going to share with you some tips.
Choosing your glue
First, you need to select an adhesive. There are many adhesives on the market and some are better at applying Swarovski Crystal to fabric than others. My all-time favorite glue for this job is Gem Tac. It dries clear, is washable and is perfect for fabrics. Plus, the flow of glue is easy to control. E6000 is another glue choice that some people like to use. It does come with some warnings and it’s much gloppier and harder to control the application.
Applying Swarovski Crystal to Fabric
To begin with, pre-wash and dry your garment before you start gluing. If the fabric is thin or sheer, place a piece of wax paper underneath.
When applying Swarovski crystals to fabric, it’s very important to use a large enough glue drop. The drop of glue should be about the size of the rhinestone. After you press the rhinestone into the glue, the glue should seep out from the edges. This makes a seal which helps keep the rhinestone from peeling off. One of the most common reasons for rhinestones falling off is this one, a lack of glue seal. Use a wax tipped tool or tweezer to pick up rhinestones and press them into the glue drop. This glue will be invisible once it dries as it dries clear.
Always let dry flat for 24 hours before wearing. To sum up, applying Swarovski Crystals to fabric appears harder than it seems. With a little practice, you’ll soon be adding crystals to everything.
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This project was inspired by my Mother in Law who loved to travel and collected sand in small bottles from the many places she visited. Instead of putting the sand in an ordinary bottle, you can upcycle and embellish a small bottle to reflect the theme of your vacation. The theme of my bottle is my favorite destination spot: the beach.
For this project I used:
1 small old bottle (mine is an old spice bottle)
10ss flat back pearls
12ss peridot and aquamarine flat back rhinestones
Wax tipped tool or tweezers
Sand from your vacation spot
How to upcycle an old bottle
Thoroughly clean and dry your bottle that you will upcycle. I enlisted the help of my daughter with the clay components as she is much more talented than I am. First, cover the lid with clay.
Since our theme was the beach, she created a star fish to put on top.
Then she created some beach themed components to place inside the bottle: a little crab and anchor.
Place your components and lid on cookie sheet lined with white paper. Bake in the oven according to the clay manufacturer’s instructions (we did 275 degrees for 15 minutes). When done baking, remove from the oven and allow to cool.
Glue a 16ss flat back pearl to the middle of the starfish and 2 10ss flat back pearls on each of the arms. Place a drop of glue slightly smaller than the pearl and using a wax tipped tool or tweezer, pick up a pearl and gently press it into the glue drop.
I used both green and blue rhinestones mixed to give the bottle an ocean feel. I glued rhinestones along the bottom of the bottle and then along the side of the cap. The adhesive I like to use when gluing rhinestones to glass is E6000. Many people don’t like to use it because of the warnings; however, it is a very strong adhesive and recommended for use in gluing rhinestones to glass. Use in a well-ventilated area and always follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
Allow to dry for 24 hours.
Add the sand from your favorite vacation spot and then place the crab and anchor on the sand.
Your vacation is now immortalized in a one of a kind upcycle bottle! Why not create one each time you go on vacation and start a collection? Use it to decorate any space and each time you walk by you’ll see it and remember the fun time you had.
Rhinestones and wax tipped tool are available from:
I love to go bargain shopping and leave no clearance bin unchecked. There is no better feeling than finding the perfect item and the perfect price! A few weeks ago, I was out searching for a birthday present for my mom. Outside in a bargain bin was this cotton cloth with a western motif (I think it was a napkin). I didn’t know what I would do with it, but it was only $1, so I couldn’t pass it up. Gluing rhinestones to fabric is simple and the perfect project to make with my new $1 napkin.
For this project I used:
My bargain cotton fabric with western motif
Assorted 12ss rhinestones
Wax tipped tool or tweezers
Sewing machine/needle and thread
Cut a branch about 4 inches longer than the width of your material. I liked the branch of a crepe myrtle, so I cut off a branch about ½ inch in diameter. Sand the entire branch including the edges until smooth.
The cloth was too long, so I cut about 1/3 of it off. To prevent the cloth from fraying, I serged the edge and then hemmed it (you can double hem it). Fold this edge down about one inch to make a sleeve to put the branch through.
Gluing rhinestones to fabric is easy.
I used assorted rhinestone colors to accent the western motif design. Place a drop of glue slightly smaller than the glue drop on the linen. Using a wax tipped tool or tweezers, pick up a rhinestone and gently press it into the glue drop. The glue should seep out slightly from the edges to form a seal and prevent the rhinestone from peeling off.
Gem Tac is my favorite fabric glue because it is easy to apply, dries clear and is washable. Continue gluing rhinestones, accentuating different areas.
Allow to dry flat for 24 hours.
When dry, slip the branch into the top sleeve. Cut a piece of jute sting about 24 inches long. Tie each end to the end of the end of the branch.
Simple yet enticing. By gluing rhinestones to fabric it’s easy to take something ordinary and turn it into something extraordinary. This hanging will catch eyes with its simple sparkle and rustic design. Use it to brighten any space! The possibilities are endless!
Rhinestones and wax tipped tool are available from:
I have five kids and often feel like I am running a zoo. I love to craft and do so in whatever spare time I have.
On your first purchase of quality embellishments from Rhinestones Etc.