Thursday, June 25, 2009

Thursday Feature: Reviews & Interviews - Soft Flex Trios from Rings & Things

This month Rings & Things provided their blog partners with the opportunity to select what product(s) we wanted to review. I've been reading about the Soft Flex Trios on the Soft Flex Girl's blog as well as at the Flex Your Creativity Contest and the free patterns on the Soft Flex site. So my selection was a variety of Soft Flex .019" diameter, 49 strand Trios. Each Trio has three coordinating colors on 10' rolls.

The wire is color coated stainless steel with a test strength of 26 lbs. They say it can be knotted, which I tried with some light yellow quartz beads and the bone color from the Harmony Trio (Bone, Lemon Quartz and Copper)

The beads curved instead of lying along a straight line when I tie simple knots between them, so I went to the site to see what they recommend, which is a figure 8 knot. I couldn't figure out how to get the knot tight to the bead, however, and until I learn how, I won't be using this for knotting.

The pricing at Rings & Things is lower than the list price, but you do have to meet their minimum purchase requirements and there's a small additional cost for purchases under $50. The plus side is a full selection of trios, quantity discounts, and great customer service (plus a candy treat in the package).

By the way, if you do get a product from Rings & Things, there's a contest on this month - you only need to submit a review to enter.

There are several things I want to try, but first I decided to make a quick and fun necklace using some glass beads I'd gotten from various bead mixes. I used three strands, quartz (white) and Rhodocrosite (light pink) from the Romance set and Pink Tourmaline (a bit darker pink) from the Mystical set. I used a large sized tube crimp that all 6 strands fit into (unfortunately, I don't know the exact size) to form the loops for jump rings at the ends so I could add a clasp.

I also knotted the strands as tightly as I could against the last beads on each side and then left the rest of them bare to show off the color. Unfortunately, I had to do some adjusting and one side got a bit kinked. I'm hoping that the weight of the beads might pull out the kink, but I'm not too optimistic. Next time, I'll forgo the knots. The small pink beads between the larger glass ones are strung on just one of the three wires, by the way, to allow some additional color to show.

(click to enlarge for detail)

I'm having fun thinking up new things to try with these colors and may even make something I feel good enough to enter in the contest (deadline is September 1, 2009).

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Blogger Dave Robertson said...

Thanks for sharing your experiments with the Trios! Once again a really useful product review :)

(Facebook us!)

June 25, 2009 at 9:03 AM  
Blogger Dawno said...

You're welcome, and I'll be talking about them even more next week as I plan to play with the rest of the Trio sets over the weekend - bracelets, earrings, who knows what else!

June 25, 2009 at 10:44 AM  
Blogger Softflexgirl said...

Thanks for reviewing the product. Knotting can be tricky in almost any material. I've never been exceptionally good at it. However, I have decided that I need to get better and do a how to video. So coming soon, I'll post a video about the 8-knot and how to incorporate it into designs. I've always preferred crimping to hold beads in place on the wire. All in all, I'm glad that you enjoyed trying something new and please, please, please enter the contest! :)

June 25, 2009 at 3:19 PM  
Blogger Dawno said...

Sara, that is great news and I'll be sure to post a link (or embed if allowed) the video when it comes out, both here as an update and in a new post!

I think I do a good job knotting with fiber materials but the wire did stymie me. Can't wait to learn how!

June 25, 2009 at 3:39 PM  

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