|Embellished Floral Choker|
This special little necklace is made up of a simple chain of right-angle weave and lot and lots of tiny beaded flowers. The techniques you will learn in making this choker can also be used to embellish amulet bags and straps, bracelets, earrings, hair ornaments, anything you can think of! The art of embellishment is tailor made to let your creativity shine through. I will show you how to make several different flowers and it will be up to you to decide placement and color.
What You'll Need:
1 hank transparent medium green seed beads
lobster claw clasp
a mixture of brightly colored sparkly seed beads, ponies, Czech crystals, (whatever you've got hiding in your magic bag! :-)
Begin by making a chain of right-angle weave long enough to fit your neck. Use doubled thread for strength. All beads used in this section are green seed beads. Pick up your clasp and three seed beads. Tie them in a circle. Go around the circle several times to strengthen it come out through the bead that is at a right-angle to your clasp. Pick up 3 more beads and go through the back of the bead your thread is coming out of and around through two more so that your thread is coming out of the right-most bead. Repeat until your chain is long enough to fit around your neck comfortably. Pick up one bead, your jump ring and another bead. Go through the back of the bead your thread is coming out of to form a circle. Go around the circle several times to add strength and weave your way back into the piece to secure.
To give myself some room to work with, I added a partial second row of 20 units in the center of my chain.
I chose not to embellish the entire chain. I placed three small groups of one or two flowers on either side of the central double rowed portion and concentrated on completely covering only the doubled section. Most of the variation is in the colors and sizes of the bead used rather than the techniques used to create the flowers. If you come up with any additional flower designs I'd love to hear about them!
The flowers are pretty simple to make, the trick is keeping the beads snug against the chain as you work. This will take practice. Hold the beads against the chain as you work and adjust them as needed to keep them tight. If you're not careful you'll end up with a big ol' piece of thread between your flower and the chain.
The first flower looks a bit like a daisy but it's more realistic because the petals are independent of each other. Pick up one green seed bead and one of the color you wish to use for your petals, I used red. Pass your needle up through the green seed bead. Pick up another red bead and go up through the green bead again. Do this six times all together.
To add a center, pick up a bead of a contrasting color (yellow in this case) and go back down through the center of the green bead.
To add a leaf, choose a bead near your flower to come out of. Pick up two dark green seed beads. Go up through the bottom of the first one and down through the top of the second one. Go through the other side of the bead you originally left and up through the first added bead again. Pick up one more bead and go down through the second bead and the chain bead again.
I like to think this next flower looks like a calla lily. You need to know brick stitch to make these. Pick up one green bead and one white bead. From the white bead add three more to create a brick stitch base row of four. Decrease normally adding a row of three, one of 2 and one of one. Weave back to the base and down through one end. Go up through the bead at the other end of the base then back down through the first end.
Go down through the green stem bead and through the other side of the chain bead you originally left. Then back up through the base and up to the top of the flower. Go through the bead at the tip of the flower and pick up another white bead. Go back down through the bead you left and pick up three yellow beads. Go down through the hole at the base of the flower that was created when you connected the two ends of the base and through the green stem bead. Re-enter the chain. The flower is likely to stick out strangely, if this happens, weave your way through the chain to a point at the back of the lily and sew it down.
This next flower is also made with the brick stitch. Pick up one or two green beads for a stem and one petal (purple) bead. From the purple bead create a brick stitch base row of three. Connect the ends to form a triangle.
For the second row, increase two, first by adding two at once in the first stitch, two separately in the second stitch, and one in the last. Connect the last bead in the row with the first.
Add a center by coming up through the hole in the center, picking up a bead, and going back down through the hole again.
Fill in the spaces between the more complex flowers with these simple ones.
Just use seed beads for these.
Add more flowers branching of from the first stem.
Crystals and other larger beads work well in this formation.
All text and graphics by Emily Hackbarth © 1997