Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Beaded Bracelet

Isela's Arellis Bracelet was on my mind when I was perusing the bead aisle at Michaels. I couldn't remember the materials she used, so I just got some elastic thread and a value pack of pastel seed beads. Let me tell you, the most time consuming part of this project is stringing the beads! I highly recommend a beading needle; it has a very large eye in the center of the extremely thin needle, and is super simple to thread. When my thumb and index finger got tired of pinching the beads, I just stabbed the needle into the container of beads and came up with 2-3 beads each time.

I tied a knot in the elastic about 5-1/2 feet from the end, then threaded beads until the elastic was full. I tied a knot at the other end so the beads were held in place, but with no stretch to the elastic. I had just over 5 feet of beads, with several inches of extra elastic extending on both ends.

I didn't tie any knots in my "bead yarn," but started wrapping a 2-peg I-cord leaving a short beginning tail of beads hanging down.

My wrist is 6-1/4", so I knit 16 rows to get a 6-1/4" length of knitting. When wrapping the loom, I placed the bead strand around the pegs without stretching the elastic at all. I had about 10" of beaded elastic left.

I cut the cast-on tail of beads right at the knot, and allowed the excess beads to come off. With a pencil, I marked next to the first bead right where the I-cord started. I stretched the elastic to tie a knot right on the mark. There is no tension on the elastic once the knot is completed.

I took the active end off the loom, and attached the bracelet ends according to the Closing an I-Cord Loop instructions below. (I recommend trying this with yarn a couple times before attempting it with beads.) Then I cut the elastic knot holding the beads at the tail end, and allowed the excess beads to come off. I tied a knot in the elastic right next to the last bead in the I-cord, as above. Then I tied the beginning and ending tails of beadless elastic together.

Here is the completed bracelet, with the elastic tails cut long so you can see how cleanly the join comes out. I put a small spot of glue on the knot, then cut the elastic at the knot. It is a dainty bracelet, but it fits a bit bigger on my wrist than I'd like. I forgot that the join itself adds a row to the length. Next time, I'll make the bracelet shorter by two rows.

Oh, and the other thing a beading needle is really good for: transferring beads from one thread to another. My first bracelet attempt wasn't pretty.


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