8+ Ways to Combine Seed Beads and Leather

A beautiful seed bead bracelet by Linda Younkman inspired today's blog post.  Bracelet by Linda YounkmanI loved how she finished it with leather snap ends that match the coloring of the beads. It's hard to envision a more perfect clasp for this design.  Check out her blog Lindy's Designs for several other leather-inspired beadwoven pieces, including a herringbone cuff and a bracelet with a leather button.

Admiring Linda's bracelet made me wonder:  How many ways can you combine seed beads and leather?  Here are a few ideas I found:

If you just want to dip your toes into combining leather and seed beads, examine this cuff by Jean Campbell on the cover of her Making Steampunk-Style Jewelry DVD.  A narrow edge of seed beads adds the perfect finishing touch to this project.
Change up this simple strung Lentils on Leather necklace by Ania Kyte by using a small herringbone spiral instead of the strung beads.  The leather cord ends make it easy to change the length of the necklace by simply tying it in different places.
String colorful stitched sliders on leather lace to create Big Sky wrap bracelets. This creation by Beadwork editor Melinda Barta (from her book, Mastering Peyote Stitch) is the kind of jewelry that's fun to wear in multiples.
Pamela Kearns created peyote-stitched tubes to decorate thick leather Boho Bangles.  Bangles make create gifts, since they don't need to be precisely sized. 
In Beading Daily's Reader Gallery, Iryna Hamilton shared her work on her Leather Queen II necklace with wide leather trim.  Her post gives details on how she created the soft, graceful folds of leather around the focal. (You'll also find a larger photo.)
Okay, so this Tigereye Collar is mostly a metalsmithed piece, but can you see how you might reinterpret the center part with some peyote stitch or square stitch sections in the front?
Leather cord is perfect for stringing these peyote-stitched tubes by Nancy Zellers. Leather cord helps fill up the space inside these tubes and knots keep them in place.  If you prefer, skip the knots and let the tubes move freely along the African Odyssey necklace.
Look at this lovely Flamenco Fringe Necklace by Jill Wiseman. She's used leather to create a fantastic focal for her beadwoven necklace.  It's unusual to see a piece of leather front-and-center like this.  Very clever!

And one more …

My own leather and seed bead bracelet will appear in the Beadwork Quick & Easy issue this fall. I'm quite excited, as this will be my first time in that special issue. In the meantime, why not design your own leather-and-seed-bead creation?  Check out Beading Daily editor Jennifer VanBenschoten's post on Essential Beading Supplies for Making Bracelets with Leather for more ideas on how to get started.

Related Posts:


Beadwork, Seed Beads, Steampunk Jewelry
Michelle M.

About Michelle M.

I was the founding editor of Beading Daily (2007-2009) and my now a freelance designer/writer/editor.  My designs have been published in Stringing, Step by Step Beads, Jewelry Gifts for the Holidays, Creative Jewelry, Beadwork, and other magazines. I enjoy stringing, bead embroidery, wirework, metal work, mixed media, beadweaving—pretty much anything that involves beads or jewelry.  I also enjoy exploring new crafts like pottery and felting.  I write a personal blog if you want to see more of my work. 16+ Free Beading Projects: A list of the free projects I created for Beading Daily. Contact Info If you have a question regarding Beading Daily, please contact customer service at beadingdaily@interweave.com or the current editor, Kristal Wick. If you'd like to contact me, you'll find my info on my website:  www.michellemach.com.  You can also follow me on Twitter at:  http://twitter.com/beadsandbooks Pictured here is a pair of earrings I made for the Spring 2010 issue of Stringing in an attempt to get over my fear of designing with the color orange!