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Bead Finishes

Our beads at Stitchncraft beads are available in a plethora of colours and here we give you a guide to the various finishes available.

Please note that some beaders with high PH level (acidic) skin may find some colours of beads rub off more easily or that the lining of silver lined beads may turn darker.



AB - a smooth iridescent or rainbow finish (you can often see various colours on the surface of the bead) which produces a lovely oil slick effect on the bead. AB stands for Aurora Borealis (the northern lights).


AB 2X- a double AB finish and found on our Swarovski Crystals.

Backlit - a silver coating is applied to the underside of the bead making it more sparkly.

Colour Lined - a clear glass bead which has an opaque coloured lining on the inside. The colour is protected inside the bead but can, in some cases, be rubbed off by the beading thread.


Ceylon - has a lustrous pearly look and is applied to a semi transparent bead.

Duracoat - a galvanised or dyed bead with a durable clear coating. It is a thicker and stronger finish than a traditional one which means the colours will last and keep their brightness. Ideal for beadwork that you intend to wear or handle.


Dyed - these beads tend to be the brighter purples, pinks and fuchsias. Exposure to sun can fade the colours over time and they may rub off with handling. Best used for items which are not going to be handled excessively or left in the sun or worn with extra care. We would suggest beading a sample with them first to test the durability.


Etched - have a rough pitted surface like they have been stippled.


Galvanised - a shiny finish which can rub off with wear. Some people are unable to work with them as the coating comes off on their fingers. Best used for items that are not going to be handled often or worn directly against the skin.


Gold Lustre - is a finish with gold highlights.

Labrador – a silver coating that allows the bead colour to still be seen. It may be on half the bead or fully cover the bead.


Lustre - a shiny smooth finish also known as pearl, lustre or Ceylon. It almost gives an oily appearance to the bead.


Metallic-lined - beads are made with transparent or opal glass and have a mirror like reflective lining in their holes.


Matte - or rosted beads have a flat dull appearance and light will not transmit through them. Beading thread will not be visible inside the beads.


Marea - is a finish of metallic tones of yellow gold and occasionally silver, greens, blues and or pink and red can also be seen


Opal - these beads have a soft milky semi translucent finish. Some light will pass through them.


Opaque - light is not transmitted through the bead and you won’t be able to see the thread running through it.


Picasso - is a lustre coating on the outside of the bead. It appears more flecked or speckled which gives the bead a natural, earthy appearance. The colour can vary from light yellow to dark brown with underlying colour variations.


Silk Satin - finish bead have a striated effect which produces a delicate muted shine.

Vega - finish has a Siam ruby base bead with a transparent lustre amethyst coating over the top.


Vitrail - is an opaque iridescent finish. The colour range is primarily pink and/or green but silver, gold, or purples are sometimes visible depending on how it catches the light.