How to Bead an Easy Netted Bezel

Jul 11, 2013

Ever since I purchased my first cabochons from Gary Wilson at my very first Bead Fest Philadelphia back in 2003, I've been obsessed with figuring out how to bead around them so that I can use them in other beaded jewelry projects. And while I love the techniques of bead embroidery for bezeling around a cabochon, as the working mother of a five-year-old, I sometimes find that knowing how to bead a quick bezel in less than twenty minutes can put me on the fast track to a new piece of finished jewelry!

Working on my most recent challenge project for Beadwork magazine, I wanted to figure out how to bead a lacy, open bezel for a set of sea glass components. I've seen other tutorials for netted bezels that begin on the back of the cabochon, but I never liked the finished look, so I decided to start at the front and work my way back. What I discovered was that this technique works for just about any shape or size of cabochon, stone, or component, it takes less than five feet of beading thread, and it takes less than thirty minutes to complete. Give it a try!

Materials:

  • Cabochon (I used a 30x40mm oval gemstone cabochon for this tutorial, but it can easily be adjusted for any size or shape.)
  • 2 grams size 11 seed bead in 2 contrasting colors (A, B)
  • 20 3mm round copper glass Czech druk beads (C)
  • 10 4mm gemstone beads in color to match or contrast cabochon (D)
  • Beading thread of your choice (6 lb. Fireline recommended)

Tools:

  • Size 12 beading needle
  • Thread cutters or scissors
  • Chain nose or flat nose pliers (optional, but helpful for getting needle through tight spaces)

Step-by-step Instructions

Step 1: To begin your netted bezel, cut a five foot length of thread. String a stop bead, leaving a 6" tail.

Pick up 1 B, 1 D, 1 B, 2 A, 1 C, 2 A. Repeat until you have a total of 5 C. Pass through the first 3 beads strung and pull snug.

Step 2: Pick up 3 A, 1 B, 1 D, 1 B, 3 A and pass through the next B-D-B in the ring.

Step 3: Repeat around for a total of five "points" on your star. Pass through the first 5 beads added in the previous step.

Step 4: Pick up 7 A, 1 B, 1 C, 1 B, 7 A. Pass through the next B-D-B set of beads from the previous round. Repeat around, passing through the first set of beads added until you exit from a B-C-B set.

Place your cabochon face down in the center of the bezel. The "arms" of the netting should extend around the cabochon and reach onto the back.

Step 5: Use your fingers to gently pull the last round of netted "arms" around the back of the cabochon, while keeping the tension on your working thread taught.

Pick up 5 A, 1 B, 1 C, 1 B, 5 A, and pass through the next B-C-B set of beads in the previous round. Repeat for a total of 5 C.

Step 6: Pick up 1 C, pass through the next B-C-B set of beads in the previous round. Repeat until you have added a total of 5 C.

Weave your thread through the circle several times, tying a few half-hitch knots as necessary and adding a drop of glue if desired. Weave your thread into the bezel and trim close to the beadwork.

Step 7: Flip the bezel over and remove the stop bead. Weave the tail into the initial ring of beads, tying a few half hitch knots and adding a drop of glue if desired. Weave any remaining thread into the bezel, and trim close to the beadwork.

Now, here's the fun part: you can customize this for any cabochon or stone using any beads you have handy!

  • For square cabochons, make an initial ring of beads using 4 gemstone or 4mm beads. Wrap your netted "arms" around the corners of the cabochon, and cinch together on the back of the cabochon.
  • Think about embellishments for your finished netted bezel. You can add thinks like spike beads, gumdrop beads, or even vintage nailheads. If you want to add your embellishment beads spaced out evenly, make sure you have an odd number of gemstone or 4mm beads in your initial ring.
  • For round cabochons, you can use an even number of gemstone or 4mm beads in your initial ring.
  • You can make your netted bezel with more rounds, as pictured with my spiky cabochon netted bezel.
  • Add lots of other embellishments when you've finished with the bezel like extra rounds and layers of beads, or leave it as it is, add a quick beaded bail, and string it on a beaded rope!

Thinking about all the awesome ways you can change this up yet? I've got loads of cabochons in my stash, and even better, I've got a huge collection (okay, it's a hoard) of shaped beads including peanuts, two-holed seed beads, spikes, Tilas, and more! If you've got a hoard of shaped beads like I do and need a little inspiration for using them, check out the Shaped Beads Ultimate Collection, available exclusively in the Beading Daily Shop.

Learn how to bead a bezel using Tila beads in the Shaped Beads Ultimate Collection

My favorite thing about this collection? It's all in digital format, so you get access to the video, eBooks, and three beading projects instantly! If you need some new ideas for how to bead with your Tilas, peanut beads, bugle beads, and two-holed seed beads, check out the fabulous Shaped Beads Ultimate Collection and use up those beautiful shaped beads in your stash!

What's your favorite way to bezel a cabochon or undrilled component? Do you use peyote stitch? Netting? Right-angle weave? Share your favorite beading techniques for bezeling, and leave a comment here on the Beading Daily blog!

Bead Happy,

Jennifer


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Comments

seageek wrote
on Jul 11, 2013 8:05 AM

Jennifer, thanks for this great post! I was able to make some nice bezels around some stones I found on the beach using your right angle weave technique that you posted a while back. Now here is another great method! I tried a while ago to use just peyote stitch to make a bezel for a seashell and although the ones I managed to finish came out nicely, it was a time consuming a frustrating endeavor. I think this netted method will work nicely on the shells. Maybe this Christmas I can give them as gifts as I'd planned earlier.

Keep up the good work.

Cindy

cat9 wrote
on Jul 11, 2013 5:15 PM

I'm looking forward to trying this. Thank you! :)

on Jul 11, 2013 7:42 PM

I love the simplicity of this bezel design.  Don't get me wrong, I relish those ornate, complicated settings; however, when I have a unique stone, the ornate bezels do get in the way.  Your tutorial allows more of the stone to show.  LUV IT!  Thanks for all your hard work keeping us in ideas and techniques.

LindaM@309 wrote
on Jul 11, 2013 9:21 PM

Hi Jennifer or Cindy (Seageek),

Can you pleeeeease tell me where I can find that right angle weave technique mentioned in Cindy's (seageek) comment of 7/11/2013 at 3:05pm?  I would love to try that!  I also have some Jersey seaglass that I would love to make into a pendant, but just don't know what to do with it, and I love love love RAW! :-)  

Thank you!!  

Linda

LindaM@309 wrote
on Jul 11, 2013 9:23 PM

Hi Jennifer or Cindy (Seageek),

Can you pleeeeease tell me where I can find that right angle weave technique mentioned in Cindy's (seageek) comment of 7/11/2013 at 3:05pm?  I would love to try that!  I also have some Jersey seaglass that I would love to make into a pendant, but just don't know what to do with it, and I love love love RAW! :-)  

Thank you!!  

Linda

I tried rating it 5 stars, but it would only show 4 1/2 stars, don't know why...

seageek wrote
on Jul 12, 2013 7:23 AM

Here is a link, Linda:

www.beadingdaily.com/.../make-a-cabochon-bezel-with-right-angle-weave.aspx

Have fun!

Cindy (Seageek)

Gloria E wrote
on Jul 12, 2013 2:22 PM

Love this idea and the look!! Thank you for sharing your tutorial.  I will be trying this out very soon on some of my cabs.

Kathy@415 wrote
on Jul 13, 2013 8:14 AM

Thank you so much, Jennifer, for these great directions.  While it did take me a little more time to do, I had to sit right down and try this bezel.  It turned out great and I will definitely try it on other pieces that need to be dressed up a bit.  I always look for ward to your articles, thank you again.

Kathy

scsuber wrote
on Jul 13, 2013 1:52 PM

Exactly what I needed!  Thank you.

www.frenchmermaidcollection.blogspot.com

on Jan 11, 2014 6:22 PM

I love this pattern. Thank you for sharing. God bless

merlinabc wrote
on May 17, 2014 11:35 AM

I like the look of the back of this finished item, much better than the front lol :)

Dots-Dangles wrote
on May 17, 2014 4:12 PM

The link to Shaped Beads Ultimate Collection doesn't work