Embroidering with Beads

Have you ever embroidered with beads? It's easy to do and it's a great way to add a little sparkle to your embroidery projects, or create unique beaded designs.
I'm working on this mermaid tail pattern, I've finished the embroidery and now I'm ready to add some bead embellishments!
I've got some tiny seed beads and some a bit larger. 
You can stitch on larger beads individually with any sewing or embroidery needle, just make 2-3 stitches through the bead to your fabric.
But for tiny seed beads, you'll want to pick up a few beading needles. These are extra long and really skinny so they'll fit through the tiniest of bead holes. They also bend a bit so it's easier to maneuver them.
You'll also want to use thread, not floss which is fuzzier and can be hard to thread through a bead or beading needle.
Here's how to stitch on rows of beads: Tie a knot in some strong thread and thread a needle. Pull it through the fabric, and through 4 seed beads. Pull the needle back down through the fabric.



Next, make a back stitch up through the last two beads in your row. This will hold the row securely to the fabric so it doesn't wriggle around. Now you can add 4 more beads. Keep repeating all along your pattern line, add 4 beads, back stitch through 2. When you're done, tie a knot at the back, make sure it's tight!





Try adding a larger bead at the end of each row, or a few along the edge.


I think this is the perfect pattern to add some extra sparkle and jewels to! I've just followed my stitched lines, adding some beading here and there to compliment the embroidery. You can add as few or as many beads as you like to your designs.

Loooong ago I used to make lots of Blythe doll dresses, and here are some I embroidered with beads. It's fun to draw freehand swirls or designs to stitch or make up designs as you go by mixing and matching different colors and bead types.


I hope you'll try this out! Have fun beading your embroidery.

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