Saturday 2 April 2011

Basic Stitch Tutorial - Peyote

Welcome to the first of our basic stitch tutorials! In this series of tutorials we'll be showing you the basics of different stitches and techniques, building up a collection of tutorials that you can refer to whenever you need them. Because you can do so much with the basic stitches once you've learnt them we won’t be including instructions for finishing or embellishing.

We’re beginning the series with peyote stitch, a very versatile technique which is well worth adding to any beaders repertoire. In this tutorial I’m using size 8 Japanese seed beads to create a strip of peyote 6 beads wide. This is a quick and easy way to learn peyote as you only need to add 3 beads per row and the bead size means it works up quickly. I’m also using C-lon beading thread and a size 10 beading needle.

Before you start, thread your needle with a comfortable length of thread. Pick up a stop bead, move it down to about 8" from the end of the thread and sew through it again in the same direction, being careful not to split the thread. The stop bead is a single bead in a contrast colour, it stops your beads falling off and helps you to achieve a better tension when you work the first few rows.

You may find it easier to work the first few rows on a flat surface.

Pick up 6 beads and slide them down to the stop bead.

Pick up 1 bead, skip the first bead on the row and sew through the second bead.

Pick up 1 bead, skip a bead on the row and sew through the next bead.

Pick up 1 bead, skip a bead and sew through the final bead to complete the row. Pull the thread taut to line up the beads.

You’ve just completed 3 rows of peyote (the 6 beads you picked up at the start count as rows 1 and 2) and now have a small strip that has ‘up beads’.

Onto row 4...

Pick up 1 bead and sew through the first ‘up bead’.

Pick up 1 bead and sew through the second ‘up bead’.

Pick up 1 bead and sew through the final ‘up bead’.

Continue picking up 1 bead and sewing through the ‘up beads’, adding 3 beads per row until the strip is as long as you need. You can change the direction that you sew or you might find it easier to flip the strip over after every row. Make sure you keep the thread taut as you work.

Here’s a bracelet I made with the above instructions, using a 'Salt & Pepper' Miyuki bead mix.

I hope you've enjoyed this tutorial, if you have any questions then please ask away!


Kirsty.A said...


Anonymous said...

Great tutorial! Your photos are excelletn. I love working peyote, but have a horrible time with the first two rows if it is a long row. Something I started doing to help myself is to insert a wire into the first row along the down beads. This makes the up beads pop up and hold steady while stabilizing the base. Makes things so much easier, no twisted stitches and you just remove the wire after you have a few rows completed.

Bead Queen said...

Fab tutorial Liz. Well done xxx

Sarah said...

Thank you Liz, that's a fantastic tutorial!That's a great tip mandy, thank you!

Anonymous said...

I'm glad you're enjoying it! Mandy that's a good tip :) If anyone else has any tips please feel free to comment here, hopefully this will be a great resource for beginners wanting to make a start in beadweaving!

Kitty Ballistic said...

Great tutorial! You've made it look so simple, I think even I could manage it. :-)

June said...

Lovely tutorial - I certainly need the basics and will be following these with great delight!

Kitty Ballistic said... worked! I will blog about my finished bracelet later, but there's a pic of it here: Don't know if the link will work...

Barbara said...

Hi, I am gently putting my toe into the world of needle beading! Can you tell me, please, what happens to the STOP bead on brick/peyote stitch, when the design is finished? Is it part of the design? Have you used a different colour so that you can see where the start is, till you can used to doing the stitch(s)?
Thank you.


Anonymous said...

Hi Barbara, welcome to the world of beadweaving! The stop bead is a temporary bead which you use to 'stop' the first few beads of your work from falling off the thread. It helps keep them in place while you work the first few rows or stitches and allows you to get a better thread tension. It's best to use a different colour from your work to make it more visible as it is removed from the work when you're finished. Do make sure that you don't sew through the thread when sewing through it the second time as it's almost impossible to remove if you do!

Barbara said...

Hi crimsonmoon! Thank you for getting back to me - your explanation has helped me a lot. Also, I think on your site, I have read that Peyote is Brick Stitch turned on its side - which has also helped me. I have a little postage stamp pattern which I just love, and I may be punching above my weight, but I will let you know how I get on!

Thanks again,