Friday, November 21, 2014

Tying on Beads

Perhaps the simplest way to add beads after the fact, even easier than sewing them onto your work, is just tying them on.

The first thing to do is get the beads on the yarn. Obviously, the beads need holes "large enough". They don't need to be loose because yarn is squishy, but if the hole is too small you risk breaking the bead.

Any sewing needle that will get through the beads is going to have an eye that is too small to get the yarn through. I generally use a wire threader for a needlepunch tool as shown to the right, but you can get appropriate needles - and just about everything else jewelry - at Fire Mountain Gems.

Once a bead is on a length of yarn, it's a simple matter to pull one end through a space and the other end through an adjacent space. You can use a crochet hook or tapestry needle, whichever is easier. Tie a square knot (right over left and left over right), put a dab of glue on the back of it, especially if the bead is heavy or precious, and let it dry.

And this is my result.

Of course, I looked at it and thought "hmmmmm." What I was seeing was the beads forcing the fringes to stick out. So, I decided to add extra fringe and macrame it into a design. (A nice tutorial for basic macrame knots is here.)

Superwash wool has many virtues but, it turns out,  suitability for macrame is not one of them. I did manage to tie a couple rudimentary knots, but that was it. So, I grabbed some slubbed cotton from my stash to see if plant fibers would work any better. They do, and I think that with more practice, smooth yarn, and an actual plan, I would have come up with something I would be willing to post on my blog. For now, I should probably stick to my knitting.

On the other hand, as I was writing this post, I thought "Hey, maybe I can braid it!" I will save that for next time.

Until then . . .

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