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Leafy inspiration beadwork bracelet

Peyote stitch variations lay fertile ground for leafy beadwork.
Leavy inspiration beadwork bracelet Shoe
Leavy inspiration beadwork bracelet cuffed

A misstep into a patch of poison ivy gave root to an award-winning idea for a beaded shoe. After the shoe took first place in a contest, the concept grew into this multilayered bracelet.


bracelet 7 1⁄2 in. (19.1cm) 

  • 2g size 6/0 seed beads, berry color
  • 16g size 8/0 triangle beads, deep gray/green
  • size 11/0 seed beads
    • 16g deep green, color A
    • 27g leaf green, color B
    • 2g berry color, color C
  • 4g size 11/0 Japanese cylinder beads, light-yellow green
  • 5g size 15/0 seed beads, leaf green
  • 16 in. (41cm) 26-gauge craft wire
  • Fireline 4 lb. test
  • beading needles, #12
  • bamboo skewer
  • 5⁄8 in. (1.6cm) cover- button kit (available at most fabric stores)
  • 2-in. (5cm) cotton fabric square
  • 1-in. (2.5cm) felt square
  • chainnose pliers
  • roundnose pliers
  • wire cutters

Leavy inspiration beadwork bracelet Figure 1

Our bead counts and illustrations are specific, but, as in any free-form design, you can adjust your bead counts, components, placement, and colors.


1. On a comfortable length of Fireline, pick up 80 8/0 triangle beads. To adjust the length of the bracelet, add or omit an even number of beads until the base is 1⁄2 in. (1.3cm) short of the desired length.

2. Work in flat, even-count peyote stitch to complete a total of eight rows, for a strip that has four beads on each straight edge. Secure the tails with a few half-hitch knots between beads, and trim.

Peyote arches

1. Secure a new length of Fireline in the beadwork, and exit the third up-bead on one side (FIGURE 1, point a). Pick up 12 to 16 8/0s, skip seven up-beads to sew through the next up-bead. Continue through the next two beads to exit an up-bead (a–b).

2. Make three more arches along the edge (b–c). Sew through to the other side of the peyote base. Repeat to create arches on the other edge (d–e).

3. Using color A 11/0 seed beads, make an arch between the base and the last 8/0 arch (f–g). Connect all the 8/0 arches with 11/0 arches (g–h). Sew through to the other side, and repeat (i–j).

4. Using As, add another row of 11/0 arches as desired (k-l and m-n, PHOTO A).

5. Work three to six rows of peyote as desired along the 11/0 arches, using As and color B 11/0s (PHOTO B). Secure the tails, and trim.

Leavy inspiration beadwork bracelet Photo A
Leavy inspiration beadwork bracelet Photo B
Leavy inspiration beadwork bracelet Photo C
Leavy inspiration beadwork bracelet Photo D w labels

Base bridges

1. Secure a new thread near one end of the bracelet, and exit at point o.

2. Pick up ten to 14 8/0s, cross diagonally to the other edge, and sew through an up-bead (o–p). Pick up 12 to 16 As, cross back to the other edge, and sew through an up-bead (p–q).

3. Repeat step 2 to create alternating bridges of 8/0s and 11ºs that zigzag across the base (q–r).

4. Add dimension to the 8/0 bridges by working three rows of peyote stitch using 8/0s. Switch to As for several rows (using two-drop peyote to fill the spaces, if needed), and finish by stitching several rows with 15/0s.

5. To embellish the 11/0 bridges, work three rows of peyote stitch using As, then switch to 15/0s for six rows. Secure the peyote flap you just created to the base by stitching through the last row of beads and the 8/0s below them (PHOTO C).

6. At each end of the base, add a bridge using eight to 12 8/0s (s–t and u–v). To embellish these bridges, add rows of peyote as follows (PHOTO D):

Rows 1–2: Use 8/0s.
Row 3: Use 6/0s.
Row 4: Use two Bs so the Bs fall between the 6/0s.
Row 5: Use three As to form a decorative picot over the 6/0s.
Row 6: Use two 15/0s to fill in between the As.

For the rest of the instructions on making the leaves, beaded wire tendrils, and the closure button, and for assembling all of the components, CLICK HERE to download the free PDF!
FIND MORE: bracelets , peyote , bead weaving

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