You can use flat peyote stitch and Delica beads to make a slinky strap for a beaded amulet bag. The beadwork shown in this tutorial is from the free Maple Leaf Amulet Bag Pattern.
Please click on any image in this tutorial for a full-size view.
1. Gather Your Materials
You'll need about 65 size 11/0 cylinder beads (Delicas) per inch of strap. I used the following colors, which coordinate with the maple leaf bag pattern:
- 24 beads in opaque cream AB; I.D. DB0157 (A)
- About 12 beads per inch in silver-lined dark burnt orange; DB0601 (B)
- About 18 beads per inch in white-lined topaz AB; DB1778 (C)
- About 21 beads per inch in opaque chartreuse luster; DB0262 (D)
For the embellishment, you'll also need 48 Miyuki 3.4mm drop beads. I used drop beads in opaque luster beige (E).
2. Begin the Band
Starting with at least one arms' span of beading thread, begin stitching three columns of flat peyote stitch. Because this is an odd number of columns, it is odd-count peyote.
- Learn the easy way to stitch three columns of peyote stitch.
- Learn how to count peyote stitch columns.
For the maple leaf bag, I began with an initial set of eight rows of beadwork using all As (opaque cream beads). I then repeated the motif shown in the photo on the left. (Please remember that you can click on the image for a full-size view.)
3. Complete the Band
Keep stitching until you have a band long enough that it will fit over your head when the ends are attached to the top of your amulet bag. For the maple leaf pattern, I completed the band with another set of eight rows of A beads. Make sure that your final row is comprised of a single protruding (center) bead, as shown.
- Learn how to start a new thread when your thread begins to run out.
4. Get Ready to Add the Embellishment on One End
Check to see whether you have at least three feet of beading thread left to work with. If not, start a new thread at this end of the band. Otherwise, you can continue to use the existing thread. In the example, I started a new thread.
Tip: If you start a new thread, wait to weave-in and end the old thread until after you have attached the band to your amulet bag. There will more space to weave it in there.
Navigate through the beadwork and bring the needle out at the edge, nine rows from the end of the band. This is where the embellishment begins.
5. Stitch the First Drop Bead
Pick up a drop bead with the needle. Reverse direction and pass into the next bead along the edge of the band, moving away from the nearest end of the band. Pull the thread taut.
6. Stitch the Next Drop Bead
Reverse direction again. Bring the needle out through the next edge bead. Pick up another drop and stitch it the same way you stitched the first one.
7. Stitch 10 More Drop Beads
Use the same technique to stitch ten more drop beads along the edge, for a total of 12.
8. Begin Stitching Drop Beads Along the Other Edge
Weave across to the opposite edge of the band, and begin stitching drop beads there. This time stitch back downward toward the end of the band.
9. Finish the Edge and Start Back Upwards
Keep stitching drop beads until you reach the place on the band where you started adding them on the opposite edge. Then navigate over to that first edge, and pass up through the very first drop bead.
Pick up a Delica (I used 1A) and pass through the next drop bead. Pull the thread very gently taut.