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Belle Époque peyote necklace

The Belle Époque of the late 19th century meets the 21st century in this contemporary take on a fashion standard

The bezel around this trillion-cut CZ is pretty and also practical — a sculptural peyote “throne” on the back protects against the stone’s pointed terminus. The bezel’s pearl detailing then draws the eye upward to a scalloped necklace chain of wrapped loops and more pearls. 


Lavender necklace 18 in. (46 cm)

  • 20 x 20 mm trillion CZ (lavender)
  • 8 mm pearl (Swarovski, white)
  • 27 3 mm pearls (Swarovski, cream)
  • 2 g 11/0 cylinder beads (Miyuki 0505, dark gold higher metallic)
  • 6 11/0 seed beads (Miyuki 457L, bronze metallic)
  • 15/0 seed beads
    • 2 g color A (Miyuki 457L, bronze metallic)
    • 1 g color B (Toho 460I, purple/bronze metallic AB)
  • 8 mm cone (gold)
  • S-hook clasp (gold)
  • 24 in. (61 cm) wire-wrapped bead chain (gold vermeil with 3.5–4 mm white pearls)
  • 6 4 mm 22-gauge jump rings (gold)
  • nylon beading thread conditioned with microcrystalline wax or Thread Heaven
  • beading needles, #12
  • 2 pairs of pliers
  • wire cutters

Garnet/silver necklace colors:

  • 20 x 20 mm trillion CZ (garnet)
  • 8 mm pearl (Swarovski, white)
  • 3 mm glass pearls (Czech, white)
  • 11/0 cylinder beads (Miyuki DB0021, nickel plated)
  • 11/0 seed beads (Toho 711, nickel-plated silver)
  • 15/0 seed beads
    • color A (Toho 0711, nickel-plated silver)
    • color B (Miyuki 1428, dyed silver-lined wine)
  • 8 mm cone (silver)
  • wire-wrapped garnet bead chain (sterling silver)

Trillion CZs, wire-wrapped chain, clasps, and kits for Cynthia’s lavender necklace are available at


Belle epoque peyote necklace fig 1b
Figure 1
Belle epoque peyote necklace a
Photo a
Belle epoque peyote necklace b
Photo b
Belle epoque peyote necklace c
Photo c
Belle epoque peyote necklace d
Photo d
Belle epoque peyote necklace e
Photo e
Belle epoque peyote necklace f
Photo f
Belle epoque peyote necklace g
Photo g
Belle epoque peyote necklace h
Photo h
Belle epoque peyote necklace i
Photo i
Belle epoque peyote necklace j
Photo j

Trillion bezel

Rounds 1–3

1. Thread a needle on each end of 2 yd. (1.8 m) of conditioned thread. Pick up 52 11/0 cylinder beads, leaving a 24-in. (61 cm) tail. 

2. With the working thread, stitch a row of flat even-count peyote stitch using cylinders until you sew through the first cylinder from step 1.

3. Join the ends to form a ring: Wrap the peyote strip around your finger, and with each needle, sew through the first several beads on the appropriate edge of the beadwork (FIGURE 1). Snug up the beads.

Rounds 4 and 5

1. Using the working thread, work two rounds of even-count tubular peyote with 26 color A 15/0 seed beads in each round, stepping up after each round. This will form the back of the bezel, and the trillion will sit in the cradle created by these two rounds. 

2. Sew through the beadwork to exit an A in the first round of As just added. Do not end the working thread.

Rounds 6 and 7

1. Place the trillion in the bezel with the back of the stone (the point) resting on rounds 4 and 5. Using the tail, work a round of peyote using As on the front of the trillion, and step up.

2. Work a round of peyote using color B 15/0 seed beads (PHOTO A), and end the tail

Trillion throne

1. With the working thread exiting an A in round 4 of “Trillion bezel,” work a round of 26 peyote stitches off of the As in round 4 using cylinders (PHOTO B), and step up.

2. Work five more rounds of peyote using cylinders (PHOTO C), stepping up after completing each round. Sew through the beadwork to exit a cylinder in the third round of the throne.

Ring of pearls

1. Work a round of peyote using cylinders, creating a ledge (PHOTO D) on which to anchor the pearls. Step up. Leave this thread for step 5 of “Beaded chain.”

2. On 1 yd. (.9 m) of conditioned thread, pick up 27 3 mm pearls, leaving a 9-in. (23 cm) tail, and wrap the pearls around the throne so they rest on top of the ledge created in the previous step (PHOTO E). Tie the pearls into a ring with a square knot.

3. Rotate the ring of pearls on the ledge to align the working thread with a corner cylinder in the ledge. Pick up an A, and sew through the corner cylinder. Pick up an A, sew through the pearl your thread exited at the start of this step, and continue through the next three pearls (PHOTO F).

4. Pick up an A, and sew through an adjacent cylinder in the ledge. Pick up an A, sew through the pearl your thread exited at the start of this step, and continue through the next three pearls. Repeat to the next corner.

5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 to complete the round, but note that the cylinder at one corner will not be positioned directly at the corner. To anchor the pearl at this corner, exit the corner pearl, pick up an A, sew through the adjacent cylinder in the ledge, pick up an A, and sew through the next cylinder in the ledge. Pick up an A, sew through the corner pearl, and continue through the next three pearls in the ring (PHOTO G). The two pearls you anchor after this corner will need to be attached to the ledge in the same manner.

6. Once you’ve anchored all the pearls to the ledge, retrace the thread path, and end the working thread and tail.

Beaded chain

1. Cut two 2 3⁄4-in. (7 cm) lengths of chain, two 3 1⁄2-in. (8.9 cm) lengths of chain, and two 4 1⁄2-in. (11.4 cm) lengths of chain. Trim each end of the chain as necessary to make sure the loops on each end are uncut. 

2. Open a 4 mm jump ring, and attach one end of a 2 3⁄4-in. (7 cm) chain and one end of a 3 1⁄2-in. (8.9 cm) chain.

3. Open a jump ring, and attach the other available ends of the two chains and one end of a 4 1⁄2-in. (11.4 cm) chain, making sure the longest chain is not between the two shorter chains.

4. Open a jump ring, and attach the available end of the 4 1⁄2-in. (11.4 cm) chain and half of the clasp.

5. Using the thread from step 1 of “Ring of pearls,” sew through the beadwork to exit a corner cylinder added in step 1 of “Ring of pearls.” Make sure this is a corner with just one corner cylinder; the corner with two cylinders will be used to attach the “Pearl dangle.” 

6. Pick up five As, sew through the first jump ring you used to attach the two shorter chains, and sew through a corresponding cylinder in the last round of cylinders added in the throne. Check to make sure the shorter of the two chains will fall to the inside of the necklace. 

7. Pick up an A, and sew through the middle three of the five As picked up in step 6. Pick up an A, and sew through the cylinder your thread exited at the start of step 6 as shown in photo h (for clarity, the jump ring and chain are not shown). Retrace the thread path, and do not end the thread.

8. Repeat steps 2–7 for the other side of the necklace. 

9. Sew through the beadwork to exit the cylinder in the ledge preceding the remaining corner. Leave this thread for step 3 of “Pearl dangle.”

Pearl dangle

1. On 24 in. (61 cm) of conditioned thread, center nine As, an 11/0 seed bead, a 3 mm pearl, an 8 mm cone from top to bottom, an 11/0, an 8 mm pearl, and three 11/0s. Skip the last three 11/0s, and sew back through the 8 mm pearl, the 11/0, the cone, and the 3 mm pearl. Pick up an 11/0 and nine As (PHOTO I). 

2. With one thread, sew back through the 11/0 above the 3 mm pearl to form a loop. Retrace the thread path through the dangle, and end the thread. Repeat this step with the other thread.

3. Using the remaining thread from step 9 of “Beaded chain,” pick up 15 As and the two loops of the dangle. Skip the two corner cylinders, and sew through the following cylinder (PHOTO J). Sew through the beadwork to retrace the thread path, and end the thread.

Belle epoque peyote necklace alt
Editor's note
You can adapt this project to fit a 23 mm Swarovski crystal triangle with a few changes: Pick up 60 11/0 cylinder beads in step 1 of “Trillion bezel,” and then work one more round of peyote in step 3 before adding the 15/0s in step 4. Pick up 33 3 mm pearls in step 2 of “Ring of pearls” instead of 27.
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