I am afraid I did not explain myself very well. Sorry about that. Right now I am stringing tiny beads which originally sat very tight on a raffia string. Some I can't even pull off without cutting the raffia, that is how tight they were strung. So I wonder how they ever ended up on that raffia string. Quite some beads coming from Africa are strung on these raffia strands, even the smallest of beads, and I would love to know how they managed to get those beads on those thick strings.
It is a similar situation with microbeads from Afghanistan, Pakistan, strung on rather thick cotton thread. Once you get them off that string, no way to get them back on, even with all the tricks of the trade mentioned here.
I am just curious.