Lately, I’ve been seeing some very inspiring beadwork made with spike beads—so inspiring, in fact, that
I finally ordered some for myself. Beware: Designs incorporating these hot new beads are anything but subtle!
Today, I share with you a
quick-and-easy way to turn a 7x17mm spike into a charm or pendant using tubular
peyote stitch. Make two for a funky pair of earrings.
||Rounds 1 and 2: Use a comfortable length of thread (I used about 4'
of FireLine) to string one 7x17 spike. String 9 size 11° seed beads;
pass through the spike again. String 9 more size 11° seed beads; pass
through the spike and position this new set of beads around the other side of the spike. Pass through all 18 seed beads. To set the tension, I
knotted my working thread between beads, then passed through a few more beads. If adjusting the bead count to accommodate different-sized spikes or seed beads, make sure you end up with an even
number of seed beads around the base before moving on to Round 3.
||Round 3: Work tubular peyote stitch with 1 size 11° in each stitch,
placing the beads of this round closer to the base of the spike than the tip.
||Rounds 4-6: Work 2 rounds of tubular peyote stitch with 1 size 11° in each stitch. Work Round 6 with 1 size 15° in each stitch. Use tight tension so the beadwork begins to cup around the base of the spike.
||Loop and Rounds 7 and 8: Use size 15°s to form a loop that spans over
the base of the spike, connecting to beads of Rounds 5 and 6. Weave
through beads to exit Round 1. Work 2 rounds toward the tip of the
spike, using size 15°s.
Embellishment: Work rounds of embellishment as you wish. The
hard part is knowing when to stop! In this sample, I used the
stitch-in-the-ditch embellishment technique to add 1 size 11° between
each bead of Round 3. Then, I stitched 3-bead picots with size 15° to the
stitch-in-the-ditch beads. And since I was happy with how that
layering turned out, I added another round of 3-bead picots (again with
size 15°s) to the beads of Round 4.
Here's a side and top view of my
Please share your spike-bead experience. This certainly won't be the last time this fun new bead shape makes its way into my beadwork.
The spike shown here is "amber magic" from Beyond Beadery.