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Fanciful flora peyote necklace

Stitch a free-form necklace with beautiful blooms of glass buds, flowers, and leaves.
Fancifulflora

I designed my necklace, Earth in Bloom, with analogous and complementary colors that echo the hues of Barbara Svetlick’s delicate flower beads.

MATERIALS

necklace 22 in. (56 cm)

  • 4 1-in. (2.5 cm) diameter large art-glass flower beads
  • 2 ¾-in. (1.9 cm) diameter medium art-glass flower beads
  • 12 ⅜ x ½-in. (1 x 1.3 cm) art-glass bud beads
  • 8 ¾ x 1-in. (1.9 x 2.5 cm) large art-glass leaf beads
  • 4 ⅝ x ¾-in. (1.6 x 1.9 cm) small art-glass leaf beads
  • 17–30 g total assorted 4 mm fire-polished, 3 mm fire-polished, 8/0 seed, hex-cut, 9 mm bugle, 3 mm bugle, 11/0 cylinder, 11/0 seed, 11/0 triangle, and 15/0 seed beads in 3–7 colors and finishes
  • nylon beading thread, size D
  • beading needles, #12

 

INSTRUCTIONS

FancifulfloraPhotoA
Photo A
Click on images to enlarge

Peyote band 

For this free-form design, you may want to sketch your ideas before you start. 

1. On a comfortable length of thread, attach a stop bead, leaving a 12-in. (30 cm) tail.

2. Pick up an even or odd number of beads to equal about 5 in. (13 cm): Use 8/0 seed beads, hex-cut beads, 9 mm bugle beads, 3 mm bugle beads, 10/0 cylinder beads, 11/0 seed beads, and 11/0 triangle beads, grouping each type of bead in ½–1-in. (1.3–2.5 cm) segments (PHOTO A).

FancifulfloraPhotoB
Photo B
3. Work a row of even- or odd-count peyote stitch, following the established color groupings (PHOTO B).
FancifulfloraPhotoC
Photo C

4. Work four to six more rows of peyote stitch, ending and adding thread as needed, and take note of the following: 

  • You can keep the same beads together for some of the groups.
  • When adding rows, you can switch to different beads to form new groups.
  • To make groups of beads look organic, you can stagger them so they do not line up.
  • You can incorporate rows of 3 or 4 mm fire-polished beads or add them as single beads.
  • When switching to beads of different sizes, the beadwork might curve. To adjust the curve, you can add or remove beads, change to two-drop peyote, skip beads, or sew through the previous row.
  • You may want to form an opening in the places where you want to put flowers, leaves, and buds. To form an opening: Pick up several beads, skip the same length of beads in the previous row, and sew through the next bead to continue peyote stitch. When you come back to the beads picked up for the opening, work them as the first two rows of peyote stitch (PHOTO C).
FancifulfloraPhotoD
5. With your thread exiting the last row of peyote stitch, pick up about 6 in. (15 cm) of beads, using similar groupings as those you made in step 2 (PHOTO D).
FancifulfloraFigure
Figure
6. Work a row of peyote on the beads just added, and when you reach the previous section of the necklace band, use the end beads to start the next row: Sew through the end bead, turn, and sew through the end bead in the next row (FIGURE).
FancifulfloraPhotoE
Photo E

7. Repeat step 4, taking note of the following: 

  • Use the end beads in the previous section to start new rows.
  • On the end that is not attached to the previous section, gradually increase the width by adding rows and larger beads so that the band has about 1½–2 in. (3.8–5 cm) that have about 15–20 rows. Tie a few half-hitch knots, but do not end the thread.

8. To make the other half of the necklace, repeat steps 1–7, but in step 5 pick up about 5 in. (13 cm) of assorted beads.

9. Align the wide ends of the bands to form a “V” with the shorter band slightly overlapping the longer band (PHOTO E). Stitch the bands together, sewing through beads where the holes line up on both bands. If desired, you can stitch a bridge from one band to the other.

10. If desired, you can add more length to the band.

 

FancifulfloraPhotoF
Photo F
FancifulfloraPhotoG
Photo G

Clasp


1. Remove a stop bead from a tail. Check the length, and add beads to one or both ends as desired. Sew through the beadwork to exit an end bead in a middle row. Pick up an 8/0, a glass flower, and an 11/0 or another bead bigger than the hole of the glass bead. Skip the last bead picked up, and sew through the glass flower, 8/0, and an end bead in a middle row of the band (PHOTO F). Retrace the thread path several times to reinforce the connection, and end the thread.

2. Remove the stop bead from the remaining tail. Sew through the beadwork to exit an end bead in a middle row. Pick up an 8/0 and a mixture of 8/0s, 11/0s, and glass leaves to fit around the flower. Sew back through the 8/0 and an end bead in a middle row of the band (PHOTO G). Retrace the thread path several times to reinforce the connection, and end the thread.

FancifulfloraPhotoH
Photo H
FancifulfloraPhotoI
Photo I

Embellishment


1. Sew through the beadwork to exit a bead where you want to place a glass flower or leaf. Exiting near the gap between bridges may help stabilize the glass flower or leaf. Pick up a few seed beads that are larger than the hole of the glass bead, a flower or leaf, and a few more seed beads that are larger than the hole of the glass bead. Sew through a bead in the band that is about the same distance from the bead you exited as the length of the beads you just picked up (PHOTO H). Retrace the thread path to reinforce the connection.

2. Sew through the beadwork to exit a bead where you want to place a glass bud. Pick up a glass bud and a seed bead. Skip the seed bead, and sew back through the glass bud and a bead adjacent to the bead your thread exited (PHOTO I). Retrace the thread path to reinforce the connection.

3. Repeat steps 1 and 2 for the remaining flowers, leaves, and buds. End all of the threads. 

EDITOR'S NOTE:

To make a bracelet, work steps 1–4 of “Peyote band,” picking up enough beads in step 2 to fit around your wrist. Work all of the steps of  “Clasp” and “Embellishment.” For sturdiness, use pressed-glass or Lucite flowers and leaves.

FIND MORE: necklaces , glass , seed beads

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