Keep your bead selection varied but small. Freeform looks best when beaded with different bead sizes, which is easier to manage if you work in monochrome, adding black, white, or a metallic for accent.
Consider bead texture and surface treatment when you pull the beads in each size. Use matte or shiny opaque and transparent beads, iris beads, oil-slick colors, surface-treated matte beads, silver or gilt lined, metallic beads and luster beads. Mix the colors together or keep them separate; it's up to you. Just be sure to keep the sizes separated.
Here's an easy bead count for freeform beading:
- Choose at least two shades and textures in size 6/0 beads.
- Set out two or three shades and textures in size 8/0 beads.
- Gather five or six shades and textures in size 11/0 beads.
- Add at least 3 colors and textures in Delica-type cylinder beads.
- Add one or two shades in smaller beads, such as size 13/0 Charlotte beads for their sparkle, or those tiny size 15/0 beads for textural interest.
- At one major "focal" bead as the bracelet center, side, or even clasp. Don't overlook the brilliant new Czech glass buttons as focal possibilities.
- Add a few accent beads; flat beads such as coin shapes, lentils, donuts, or side-drilled lentils add textural interest and comfort.
- Don't worry if your group of beads looks skimpy; you can always add more as you go, These beads, other than the those beads smaller than the 11/0 are meant to build the central section of the bracelet.