Monday, July 16, 2012

Distinguishing Resin Rhinestones with Crystal Rhinestones by observation

In earlier blog posts, I have mentioned how to distinguish resin rhinestones with crystal rhinestones by heating it with a lighter. Today, I'll talk about another way to distinguish them by naked eye observation.

There are two major ways to distinguish them:

(1) Observing the foiled back of the rhinestones
Swarovski, Czech, and Asian crystal rhinestones all comes with a silvery frosted foiled back. Picture shown as below:

While a plastic, or resin rhinestones, comes with a glossy silver back, as below:

(2) Reflections

For crystal rhinestones, the light reflections from the rhinestones are beams of "rainbow color" light rays. While in resin rhinestones, the light reflected are mono-toned, not as colorful as the light reflected from crystal rhinestones. Reflections are difficult to captured with Camera, especially without any professional cameras like me, so I cannot show photos to illustrate this. But I'm sure you can easily observe the difference when you have the two kind of rhinestones on hands.

It is really important to know how to distinguish the two kind of rhinestones before you buy it. Resin rhinestones are much cheaper in price, but it can be easily scratched and lost its luminosity because of the relatively softer material (Resin) used when producing the stones.

Crystal rhinestones are more expensive, but it's more durable and has a longer lasting luminosity.

Make sure you know which rhinestones you're buying before you pays for it, some Sellers sell resin rhinestones as expensive as crystal ones to make big profits.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Choosing the right rhinestones stone size for your project

Swarovski rhinestones and all other rhinestones comes in a variety of stone size, from ss3 - ss48. So, you may ask, which size of rhinestones should I get for my project?

Using smaller rhinestones
- You will need more pieces of rhinestones to finish your work, so with the more rhinestones you're using, the number of facets altogether on the surface will be more, reflecting more light, and resulting a more sparkling item.
- If you're working on a pattern with the rhinestones, the smaller stone size will result in a finer and more detailed pattern.

- Number of rhinestones needed will be more, and increase your cost.
- More time consuming to set the rhinestones

Using larger rhinestones
- Less pieces are needed to complete the project, quicker to finish
- Larger rhinestones have a very clear facet, and show a very luminous cup, the sparkled light is larger and thus looking very sparkling
- Can offer a very good texture of stones

- Easier to be ripped off when handled without care
- Spacies in between rhinestones will be larger

 There a lot of Pros and Cons for using smaller or larger rhinestones. Choosing the right size of rhinestones for your project is totally of your own preference. But for me, I'll usually choose smaller rhinestones for smaller objects and larger rhinestones for larger objects, keeping a balance between them.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

How many rhinestones will I need? Method#2: Calculating the surface area of each rhinestones

In the previous post, I've talked about how to determine the number of rhinestones needed by knowing the number of rhinestones to cover one square inch. Today, I'll show another method to estimate the number of rhinestones needed for a project.

Last passage, I've talked about the Stone Size, let's recap as follows:
ss5 (1.70-1.90mm)
ss6 (1.90-2.10mm)
ss8 (2.30-2.50mm)
ss10 (2.70-2.90mm)
ss12 (3.00-3.20mm)
ss16 (3.80-4.00mm)
ss20 (4.60-4.80mm)
ss30 (6.32-6.50mm)
ss34 (7.07-7.27mm)


To estimate the number of crystals needed, we will need to know the Surface Area of the stones, I'll take SS12 rhinestones as an example:

Formula to calculate a surface area of a circle: 3.14 X (Diameter/2) Square
Surface Area of ss12:  3.14 X 1.5 X 1.5 = 7.07 mm sq.

For example, if we are going to cover a iphone case by rhinestones ss12,
the iPhone surface area will be: 58.6 mm X 118.2 mm = 6750 mm sq.

Then, number of stones needed = 6750 / 7.07 = 954 rhinestones.

This method can be useful if you want to know a very accurate number of rhinestones needed for your project. By using this formula, you're assuming your item are 100% covered by the rhinestones, not like the #1 method we talked yesterday.

However, it's unlikely to the item 100% covered without any spaces in between the stones, So, the actual number of rhinestones needed maybe slighlty less than the number you got from the calculation.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

How many rhinestones will I need? Method#1: Calculating the Rhinestones per inch

Many customers asked about how many rhinestones they will need for their project. It totally depends on the area which they would like to cover with rhinestones.

For all rhinestones, its size is measured by diameter in millimeter, they call it SS (stone size).

The standardised Rhinestones Stone Size Chart is:

ss5 (1.70-1.90mm)
ss6 (1.90-2.10mm)
ss8 (2.30-2.50mm)
ss10 (2.70-2.90mm)
ss12 (3.00-3.20mm)
ss16 (3.80-4.00mm)
ss20 (4.60-4.80mm)
ss30 (6.32-6.50mm)
ss34 (7.07-7.27mm)

By knowing the diameter of each rhinestones, we will then be able to know the number of rhinestones needed to fill up one inch in length:

Stone Size                      # of Rhinestones per inch
ss5 (1.70-1.90mm)         14
ss12 (3.00-3.20mm)         8
ss16 (3.80-4.00mm)         7
ss20 (4.60-4.80mm)         5
ss30 (6.32-6.50mm)         4

Then, we will be able to know, how many rhinestones are needed to cover 1 sq. inch.

Stone Size                     # of Rhinestones per inch
ss5 (1.70-1.90mm)               196
ss12 (3.00-3.20mm)               64
ss16 (3.80-4.00mm)               49
ss20 (4.60-4.80mm)               25
ss30 (6.32-6.50mm)              16

In this method, we assume that the rhinestones are tidily applied one by one, in a very orderly manner shown below. There will be quite a lot of spaces in between the rhinestones.

So, if you choose to interleave your rows of rhinestones offset every other row for a very tight setting, then you will need more rhinestones, up to one-third more.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

How many are a gross?

We used "gross" as the unit for counting rhinestones or beads. A gross is equal to 144 pieces (12 dozen). 

When the manufacture do packing of the rhinestones, the rhinestones are usually weighed, not counted, so the numbers in each pack are approximate; but they are generally within a couple of pieces plus or minus.