Monday, September 13, 2010

Birds of a Feather

A simple even count piece, Birds of a Feather can be made in either soft, natural tones (left) to add an edge to a neutral outfit or in rich, decadent sheens (right) for a night on the town.  This versatile piece can add a splash of color to any wardrobe.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Spring Awakening

Spring Awakening--Let this simple piece add a splash of color to the Spring/Summer look.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Peyote Bracelet Pattern: Extended Hearts

By 2 bead segments in brick stitch, you can turn a simple peyote bracelet of triangles into elegant hearts, extending past the main part of the piece.

Peyote Bracelet Pattern: Diamonds and Coal

The simplicity of the peyote diamond pattern makes this pattern blend with any outfit, while the vibrant contrast of colors allows it to stand out.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Bracelet Pattern: Diamond Design

This pattern combines a motley array of diamonds to create an edgy look which is balanced by the simplicity of the outer triangles.  
Try improving the inside of the diamonds to make the design uniquely yours.

Bracelet Pattern: Native Hearts


This simple odd count peyote design can be adapted for a wide variety of colors.  Generally, high contrast works best to create a vibrant piece.  

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Bracelet Pattern: Illusory Lines

Inspired by modern line art and aboriginal colors, this bracelet combines the old and new for a timeless look.

Bracelet Template: Triangular Geometry

This quick and easy design makes a sharp, highly contrasting piece, the perfect flair for any outfit.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Bracelet Template: Woven Boxes

This new age piece is both sharp and delicate.  Perfect for adding an professional looking edge to work attire.

Bracelet Template: Outside the Box

A great modern looking piece, lays diagonally across the wrist.

Bracelet Template: Boxed In

This geometric design adds a splash of color, while maintaining a neat and organized look.

Bracelet Template: Geometric Figure

This neutral colored bracelet adds a subtle flourish to any outfit.

Bracelet Template: Rolling Waves

This simple pattern can be repeated to create a soft, elegant bracelet.

Getting Started

If you're a beginning beader, the first thing you're going to need to do is collect your supplies.

Any bead store will carry the following items:
  • Beads
    • Before you go out and buy your beads, try picking a few projects that you'd like to create.  Bead stores can have an overwhelming amount of beads in all kinds of shapes, sizes and colors.  As a beginner, you should try working with simple sead beads (size 8 or 11 are the most versatile).
  • Needle
    • Most projects can be created with #10 and #12 beading needles.  While regular sewing needles can be fit through the larger (size 8) beads, they will not fit through other beads.
  • Thread
    • A strong thread is vital for any beading project.  Silamide and Fireline are the most commonly used (strong) thread types for beginning beaders, however other thread types (Nymo, SoNo, and C-Lon) are often employed, as well.  However, there is no single best type of thread, beaders develop a preference as they bead.
  • Bead Matt
    • While not as obvious or vital as the first three supplies, the bead matt is an incredibly useful tool.  It's cheap (a couple of dollars) and will keep your needle from pushing the beads instead of picking them up.
There are other items that many beaders use, though these are less vital to the project.  Depending on your preferences, you may want to invest in:
  • Bead dishes
    • Bead dishes are helpful tools for organizing the types and colors of beads for current projects.  However, if you keep the beads seperated on the matt as you work, you can easily eliminate the need for dishes.
  • Scissors
    • Special beading scissors are nice for creating clean, easy cuts that allow for easy threading.  However, regular household scissors will work for most threads (Fireline may require wire cutters).
  • Lighting and maginifiers
    • If you plan to spend large blocks of time beading, it's important to take care of your eyes.  With adequate lighting and a good magnifier, you can ease the strain of your eyes while working with the small beads.
  • Thread wax
    • This is not necessary if you are using Fireline or Silamide thread.  However, many expert beaders who work with Nymo, C-lon, or SoNo use bead wax to make the beading easier and the project stronger.  As a beginner, I would recommend sticking with Fireline or Silamide thread.
  • Clasps
    • This might sound like a strange thing to put under "optional" supplies for beading projects, but there are cheap alternatives to bought clasps.  In addition to self made beaded or wire clasps, many beaders use buttons as clasps, adding a cute flourish to their project.
After collecting your supplies, you're ready to begin learning and practicing peyote bead weaving.