Woven Seed Bead Necklace

Woven Seed Bead Necklace
I’m such a sucker for seed beads. Despite their small size, I’d rather work with seed beads than any other kind of bead. Which means you have to be really creative so you don’t just make the same necklace over and over again. To shake things up I thought I’d combine a couple of beading techniques – stringing and weaving. The woven sections are such a great contrast to the strung sections, and the strung sections means that it’s wearable and drapes beautifully. If you’ve never woven beads before, this is a great first project since you’ll only have to weave a few small sections.

You will need:
Beading thread
Beading Needles
2 colors of small seed beads
1 color of larger seed beads

Step 1
You’ll save yourself a lot of grief if you give yourself a stopper so your beads don’t all just fall off the other end of the thread. Use a bead that brightly contrasts the color you’ll be weaving and thread it towards the bottom, leaving a few inches you can weave in later. Loop the thread around the outside of the bead and bring the needle through the other side, like you’re making a cursive L. Pull tight.

Step 2
Thread on your first row of beads to be woven. I made my sections 9 beads tall, but you can do as few or as many as you’d like.

Step 3
Thread on the first bead for Row 2, then in the same way you did for the stopper, bring the thread up and around and push the needle through the left side of the last bead on Row 1. Again, think cursive L.

Step 4
Bring the thread back up to Row 2 and push the needle through the bead you’ve added. Then repeat this process to add the next bead. Thread the new bead, push the needle through the bead directly below it…

Step 5
Then back up and through the new bead again. Keep pulling tight as you go, this looks best with nice tight tension.

Step 6
I made my woven sections 9 beads tall and 5 rows wide, but again, you can customize this however you’d like. Weave in the ends of your thread by running them through several beads and then cutting off the extra.

Step 7
Next comes the strung parts. Start with a stopper bead, then string a bunch of the smaller beads onto the beading thread, and when you get the length you need, thread on one of the woven sections by running the needle all the way through one of the rows of woven beads. When you come out the other side, continue stringing on the smaller beads.

Step 8
You’ll want to measure so that you get the overall size of the necklace you want, and then use that measurement to decide how long each section should be. I just figured it out as I went and held it up to myself, but if it’s a gift you’ll want to plan better than I did.

Step 9
When you’ve got all your strands done you’ll have a collection of tails to deal with. Gather all the tails on one side together and pull until you’ve got the beads lined up at the same point.

Step 10
Use a crimp bead to keep all these threads from escaping. Set aside two or three threads that are nice and long and then snip off the rest.

Step 11
Thread the remaining long threads through a jewelry cone and tuck all the unsightly thread stumps up inside.

Step 12
Thread on another crimp bead and then a jump ring. Bring the threads back around and back down through the crimp bead, and then smush that sucker to hold the jump ring tight. Thread the remaining threads back into the jewelry cone or just cut them off and dab with glue.

Step 13
Repeat with all the threads on the other side, and add a clasp on to the jump ring.

This necklace is a classic, so depending on what colors you use and how long you make it, it will not only work for everyone from grandma to your niece, but it will never go out of style. I liked the opportunity to use just a pop of neon so I could get with a trend without getting swept away by it. I can do neon in doses this small.

Woven Bead Necklace