So, I’m going to apologize in advance – I suck at this sort of thing. Pictures! Words! In order! It’s all very time consuming and requires a lot of patience and brain power that I don’t have; I truly admire folks that are able to throw up effortless, gorgeous, thorough tutorials that are easy to follow and great to look at. I’m not that girl, so bear with me on this.
When I first wanted to make this bracelet, I couldn’t find a tutorial. I searched everywhere and finally stumbled across a diagram of how it was supposed to work, but it was still really confusing to me. I messed with it, I fussed with it, I tried finding a tutorial that I could buy that would help me, but all to no avail. Finally, after putting it down and walking away from it, something clicked in my head about what I was doing wrong, and I came back and knocked out a few bracelets. And it was easy once that light zoomed off my head. So, in the general interest of sharing, I’m going to show you the stitch that I learned. Note that I’m not showing you how to create a clasp, or how to finish it – there are a ton of people that have covered that information (and better than I would, I might add). But I’m stepping up to the plate on the one thing I had problems finding – how to do the damn thing.
Step 1: ASSEMBLE YOUR BEADS.
Above I have clear seed beads, 6 mm silver pearls, and a beading needle. I also have Fireline (a fishing line, strangely, but apparently awesome for making bead jewelry and conveniently located in my local Hobby Lobby in the beading aisle) 6lb in DIAMOND or CRYSTAL or whatever they call the clear version. I cut off a long bit of it, probably about 4-5 feet to start. If you make an entire bracelet, you’ll have to learn how to knot a new strand in, how to hide the knots, and how to weave in ends because this sucker uses a LOT of the line.
Step 2: Big Beads Go On First
Take four beads and string them on your line, and then run your line back through the first bead.
Step 3: Now Add Little Beads
Take your line and go back through the beads, but this time before you go into the first bead, add a seed bead. Do that between each of the beads until you come back around to the first seed bead. Go back through it. So now you have a line of thread that goes through your pearls TWICE, and that second round puts a seed bead between each pearl.
Step 4: Make It Look Like A Flower
Now, this is where you might have to adjust depending on the pearl and seed beads that you’re using. What I did was add seven seed beads to the line, go around the next pearl, and put my beading needle through the next seed bead. You might have to use 5 or 9 depending on your bead combination, but note that the number should ALWAYS BE ODD. You’ll see why in a minute. Do this a total of four times; when you go through the last bead, you’ll actually angle it so that you can go back into the anchor seed bead and then up the first four seed beads of the first petal you did.
See how that thread is coming out of the middle of the “petal”? That’s the first petal I did, and we’re doing what Better Beaders calls “stepping up” – you’re creating a way to make a new level of your bead weaving.
Step 5: Add More Pearls
Take one of your pearls, add it to your line, and then sew into the middle bead of the next petal. MIDDLE BEAD. NEXT PETAL. Very important here. That’s why we needed an odd number of beads on a petal; you’re creating the net with this step. Do this three more times, until you’ve added a new round of pearls.
Once those pearls are secure, the magic can happen. Do you feel it? Are you tingly? Now, pull that line, snugging up the pearls, and kinda pull down on the first level of pearls you put on the line. The “petals” will start to make “V” shapes, and you’ll see the first level of netting.
Step 6: Do It Again!
If you notice, in the last picture, you now have a single bead in between every pearl. Those single beads are the anchor beads for this round of Petal Power. Make four petals, and then “step up” through the first half of the first petal:
Then add pearls and pull tight:
Lather, rinse, repeat until you’ve done it a hundred times.
Now, in the bracelet I linked at the veeeeery top of this post, I actually used 4mm Swarovski bicones instead of pearls, and it gave a different look; experiment around with it and see what you can come up with, because from what I can tell, this is super versatile. And also, SUPER EASY.
Let me know if you actually use this to make anything – I’d be interested to see what y’all come up with!