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This glossary is growing all the time. Please feel free to suggest a term to add.

A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z  

Cabochon  Piece of semi-precious or precious stone that is cut and polished, but that contains no facets. Often large and oval.
CallotteCallotte  Metal findings that cover the knot at the end of a string of beads. Callottes (also called clam shells) clamp sideways onto the knot. Tying the knot around a seed bead and adding a drop of glue secures the knot. Close the callotte with pliers and snip the excess thread. Also called clamshells or bead tips.
Carnelian  a reddish-orange, or reddish-brown colored gemstone from the Quartz family. It has a warm, uniform, and easily distinguishable color. Carnelian is found all over the world, but it is said the best comes form India. It is also found in various parts of the United States. More about Carnelian
Ceylon  A type of glass bead finish, abbreviated Cy, that is shiny, pearl-like, and semi-transparent. Buy Czech Glass Ceylon Seed Beads
Chain nose pliers  Pliers that are rounded on the outside but have flat inside edges. They are good for gripping wire or a jump ring, as opposed to round-nose pliers, which are better for making loops. Buy Chain Nose Pliers
Chandelier Earrings  Earrings with dangles that hang from a base, sometimes on multiple levels. They can range from elegant to funky in style. The dangles give the earrings movement.
Charlotte Beads  A type of seed bead where one side is cut (faceted), making them sparkle. Originally they were only made in 13/0 and therefore charlottes in other sizes are sometimes referred to as "true cuts" or "one cuts".
Charm  Originally denoting something with magical qualities, now usually refers to small metal stylized pendants, often of animals, symbols, or signs of the zodiac (horoscope).
Chaton  1) A cone-shaped crystal or gemstone where the top circular edge is beveled. Sometimes refers to costume jewelry where crystal beads in this shape are backed by foil to make them sparkle. 2) A type of setting where the gemstone is held in place by metal claws. Contrast with bezel setting.
Cherry Quartz  A manufactured stone that resembles strawberry quartz but is actually glass.
Choker  The shortest length of necklace, worn very close to the neck or sometimes high on the neck.
Chrysocolla  Chrysocolla is a very soft stone that comes in a beautiful bluish-green color. Many people call Chrysocolla the "Peace Crystal" because of it's calming and soothing powers. Chrysocolla is found in quite a few places including the Czech Republic, Israel, and the United States. It is usually found alongside items like quartz and limonite. More about Chrysocolla
Chrysoprase  Chrysoprase is a member of the quartz family and is a variety of chalcedony. It is usually found in a beautiful apple green color, but sometimes is found in a deeper green. Chrysoprase is translucent and very bright in color. Chrysoprase is believed to facilitate self-expression, courage, and the ability to use them wisely. Chrysoprase is found in Queensland, Australia, and many other parts of the world. More about Chrysoprase
Cinnabar  A soft stone composed of mercury sulfide, cinnabar is bright or brick red in color and is often carved in intricate fashion. Today, much jewelry called cinnabar is actually a heavy molded polymer made to resemble cinnabar beads, or red lacquered wood. Buy Cinnabar Beads
Citrine  Citrine is a member of the Quartz family. It is a beautiful yellow gemstone with a color that ranges from light to dark. Good quality citrine is clear, while lower grade style, like those used in beading, can have an opaque look to it. Citrine is the traditional birthstone for November. Citrine is sometimes mistaken for the more expensive yellow topaz. Citrine is believed to promote creativity. More about Citrine
Clasp  Any of a number of fasteners that hold the ends of a piece of jewelry together. Most are metal or wire: examples include lobster claw clasp, toggle clasp, barrel clasp, and fish hook clasp.
Cobalt  A lustrous, magnetic, silvery-white metal with a blue tint. Cobalt has been detected in Egyptian sculpture and Persian jewelry dating all the way back to third millennium BC, and in Chinese artifacts dated as early as AD 607. True cobalt beads are not often seen in typical beading applications. However the term cobalt is used to describe the deep, lustrous blue color of beads made of other materials.
Coil  1) Coil beads are beads that consist of a coil of some material, usually metal; 2) Coil findings or clasps are used to attach clasps to leather cords by crimping the last coil around the leather. See these instructions.
Cord  Cord is thicker than thread and usually a woven product. Many materials are used to make cord for beading, such as satin, leather, suede, hemp, flax, silk, and nylon. More about Cord
Costume Jewelry  Originally, costume jewelry was over-the-top, large and fake to be seen from the stage. However, many people also refer to costume jewelry when describing jewelry made of faux gemstones and metals like nickel, instead of precious gemstones, semi-precious gemstones, gold, silver, or platinum (though sometimes the clasps are made of gold or silver).
Cowry  Sometimes spelled cowrie, these shells are rounded, shiny, and have a porcelain-like appearance. They are mostly egg-shaped and almost always smooth with colorful patterns and a long, narrow, slit-like opening..
Crimp BeadsCrimp Beads  Crimp beads are small metal beads that you squish onto the tigertail to make the beads stay where you want them. Can be corrugated or smooth.
Crimping Pliers  Specialized pliers for squishing crimp beads. Recommended for those who plan to use crimp beads often. Buy Crimping Pliers
Crow Beads  Crow beads are similar in shape to seed beads and pony beads, but much larger and more squarish. They are cut from tubes of glass or plastic and tumbled and polished to give a smooth rounded, slightly oval finish. Crow bead size is commonly 9mm (with 5mm hole) or 6mm (with 3mm hole). They are popular for using in hair braiding, fringe, and some Native American styles of jewelry.
Crystal  This can refer to many things, but in beading it usually means either naturally occuring quartz gemstones, or man-made leaded glass beads. Adding lead to glass beads makes them sparkle more; the more lead, the higher quality the bead. It also adds weight, so really light "crystal" beads are probably just glass. Man-made crystal beads come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and colors like cubes, rounds, rondelles, and specially shaped pendants of all kinds. There are many types of crystals available, but Swarovski crystals seem to be the most popular and are widely considered the highest quality.
Cubic Zirconia  A synthesized mineral used as an affordable substitute for diamonds. While similar in appearance, diamonds are somewhat harder and lighter. Cubic zirconia gemstones have been made commercially since 1976.
Cuff Link  A decorative fastener, similar to a button, which is used to secure the ends of a shirt cuff together. These types of cuff links are most often made of precious metals and may contain gemstones. A bangle type bracelet in the form of a wide band is also referred to as a cufflink. It may be adjustable with an opening to slip onto the wrist or could be two pieces that have a hinge on one end and a clasp on the other. Beaded cufflinks are growing more popular with today's fashions and can be fashioned using bead stitching or by affixing beads to another surface using adhesive.
Curb Link Chain  A chain in which the links are oval and twisted so they're made to lie flat.

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