Choosing a Toggle: The Beginning of the End

In 1998, I hit two milestones. I used seed beads to trap my first cabochon (pictured above), and I had my first exposure to a toggle clasp. These are big events in my personal bead history.

Here's the real point of this story: I had no idea how a toggle clasp worked. Seriously. It looked clean and simple, and it was the right scale and color for the pendant. My experienced beady advisors assured me that it was easy to use, and gave a very short demo. I was lightly embarrassed afterward, but very pleased. After fumbling with every other type of clasp on my necklaces, I had found my solution. Next, I began putting toggles on bracelets, and even making my own toggles from wire and seed beads, too. This whole toggle discovery situation had gotten out of hand, in a good way.

If I hadn't been fortunate enough to benefit from the knowledge of friendly, experienced beaders, I would have attached a lobster claw to my first trapped cabochon necklace. That clasp would have tangled in my hair every time I removed the necklace, making it a less-than-popular choice that spent more time in the armoire than on me.

What I've learned since then is that most beaders have a few go-to styles that work well for their designs. Toggles are not a good choice for all designs; I cannot use them on necklaces for my sister because they catch in her hair and come undone. Choosing or making the perfect clasp can be the dividing line between a good jewelry design and a great one. Clasps, although they are functional elements, should also be aesthetically pleasing, function easily, and they should be a composed part of the whole design, not simply a last addition to get a piece of jewelry ready to wear.

If you want a designer's insight on how to finish your jewelry with the perfect clasp, Cynthia Newcomer Daniel's webinar is the perfect solution. Cynthia will teach you when a manufactured clasp is the best option, if a handmade closure is more appropriate, why certain people prefer certain clasps, how to attach a clasp correctly, and more. Don't spend hours making a great bracelet, and finish it with a clasp that is pretty good, but not perfect. Get expert help to learn to confidently choose the right clasp the first time. Let Cynthia be your personal beady advisor, guiding you to select the right clasp for whatever piece of jewelry you design next.

Anyone who cannot attend the live Webinar on April 21 at 1p.m. EST can listen to the recorded version any time for the next year, so there's no good reason not to sign up today; learn to Choose and Use the Perfect Clasp!


-Barb Switzer

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