These showy earrings require just a little bit of beadweaving and won't take long to make.
Please click on any image in this tutorial for a full-size view.
1. Gather Your Materials
You'll need the following beads for one pair of earrings. All are Miyuki brand round seed beads.
- 128 size 8/0 beads in silver-lined dark gold; bead I.D. #8-4 (A)
- 8 size 8/0 beads in silver-lined aqua; #8-18 (B)
- 68 size 11/0 beads in opaque luster medium cream; #11-9903 (shown), or dyed butter cream silver-lined alabaster; #11-577 (C)
Look for these bead colors at Caravan Beads. (Be aware that the manufacturer may change the colors it offers over time. If you can't find a specific color, substitute it for a similar one.)
The bold capital letters above are the bead key for this pattern. Learn more about these and other pattern terms and annotations.
2. Ladder Stitch Four Beads
- Related video: How to Prepare Nylon Beading Thread
Leaving a six- to eight-inch tail at the end of the thread, use single-needle ladder stitch to stitch together a row of 4A. Reinforce this row by weaving back through the beads.
3. Stitch Two Rows of Herringbone
Stitch two rows of As using herringbone stitch from a base row.
4. Pick Up a Blue Bead in the Next Row
Make the first herringbone stitch with 2A in the next row, and then pick up 1B. Make the second herringbone stitch in the row with 2A.
This method of picking up an extra bead between stitches is called making an inclusion. (Please click on the photo for a larger view of the thread path, shown in red; note, however, that you may be stitching in the opposite direction, depending on which way your beadwork is facing.)
5. Stitch the Next Row and Add Accent Beads
Stitch one more row like the previous row (make a herringbone stitch with As, pick up a B, and make the second herringbone stitch with As). Then stitch back through both beads in the second herringbone stitch, and pick up a C.
Pass through the B in the previous row and pick up another C.
Bring the thread out through the second A in the first herringbone stitch, as shown in the image on the left. Make sure the thread is pulled taut.
6. String the Beads for the First Fringe Loop
Flip the beadwork over and string all of the beads for the first (inside) fringe loop:
1C, 2A, 1C, 2A, 1C, 2A, 1C, 2A, 1C, 2A, 1C, 1B, 1C, 2A, 1C, 2A, 1C, 2A, 1C, 2A, 1C, 2A, and 1C.
7. Weave Through to the Other Side
Weave through to the other side of the beadwork, and bring the thread out through the outer bead on what is now the bottom edge of the herringbone beadwork (it was the top edge before you flipped the beadwork over). See the suggested thread path in red in the image on the left. Keep the thread taut, but not so tight that it makes the fringe loop pucker or curl.
8. Make the First Half of the Outer Fringe Loop
Pick up the following beads:
1C, 2A, 1C, 2A, 1C, 2A, 1C, 2A, 1C, 2A, 1C, 2A, 2C, and 1B.
Use ladder stitch to stitch the 1B together with the 1B in the inside fringe loop.
9. Complete the Outer Fringe Loop
Pick up the following beads:
2C, 2A, 1C, 2A, 1C, 2A, 1C, 2A, 1C, 2A, 1C, 2A, and 1C.
Pass the needle up through the outer column in the beadwork, and bring it out just before the top row (which is the row you originally made using ladder stitch). Then jog over by one bead toward the middle of the beadwork, and pass through that top row. See the thread path in red in the image on the left.
10. Make the Top Loop
Pick up 4C and pass down through the next adjacent bead (the bead just to the right in the photos). After pulling the thread taut, pass up through the original bead that your thread exited in the top row, through all 4C, and down through the adjacent bead in the top row again. Repeat this one more time to add strength to the beaded top loop.