Beaded Beads…

This is a little re-play post from March of 2006 that I swiped from my ol' podcast site, The Candie Cast.  If I remember right, I damn near lost my mind putting this tutorial together because I was living in China at the time and got the pattern from a Chinese beading book….a VERY tiny diagram, lots of loops, arrows and characters…you get the idea.  (Sorry for the language, but sometimes there is no other way to describe it.  Aiya!)   But!  A good challenge, none the less.   I've had so many people fall in love with making these beads, the latest Terry, from FL.  So Terry, this one's for you…


I warn you these are addicting to make.  They will be spilling out of your pockets, purses, drawers etc….  I warn you!  Now have fun!


  • 30 beads of any shape and size (just be sure the hole in the bead is big enough for the cord to pass through twice)
  • good quality nylon cord
  • bit of glue

Here goes nothing:

Cut 20" of cord and double it over so the ends meet and string 5 beads onto the left end/side of the tail.


Thread the right end of the cord through the 5th bead in the opposite direction that the left tail is going-I call this a 'cross'.


Pull the two ends snug so it makes a star in the middle of your bead cluster.


String 4 beads onto the left tail.


But on the 4th bead thread the right tail through in the opposite direction that the left tail is going (I call this a cross).


Look carefully at the orientation here.  At the top is the original 5 beads and in my fingers is the 4 beads.  The right cord comes out and goes into the bead directly to the right of it.


This is how it should look.  Notice how the cord looks like it is going through two beads side by side.


String 3 beads onto the left tail.


And cross the right tail through the 3rd bead.


And the right tail goes through the bead directly to the right of it again.

**Repeat the last three steps TWO more times so that you will have a total of 4 clusters around your central star at this point. 


Now run your right tail through the two beads to the right of the bead where the right tail comes out (as seen in picture) and string 2 beads onto the left tail.


Cross the right tail through the 2nd bead and pull the two ends snug.


This completes the top half of the bead, making sort of a dome shape.  Deep breath, let's push on!


The right tail goes through the bead just next to it.


String 3 beads onto the left tail.


Right tail goes through the 3rd bead, making the cross.


Now this time, the right tail goes through not one but TWO beads to the right of it!


String 2 beads on the left tail.


Right tail crosses through the second bead.

**Repeat the last the last three steps TWO more times!  We're almost there!!!!


Now, do you see that tiny gap….and notice you have one bead left? 


String the remaining bead on the left tail.


This is where it gets a little confusing, but I think you will understand the idea.  The left tail with the bead on it goes across and through the bead on the left, then it keeps going through the remaining 3 beads in the cluster of 5.  Same goes for the right tail except it goes through the right side, opposite the left.  Remember that the cord should make a triangle at each bead junction and the cord must pass through each bead twice.  Tie the tails in a knot where they meet up. 


Trim the ends and dot the knot with some glue to secure.  Yay!  We made it!


Please, please, please let me know if you try to make these and the pattern has a glitch.  I've checked over it, but I need a proof-reader so to speak!  And also, if you make something with these, please send me a picture of the finished project. 


XO, Candie


  1. Wow, those are so pretty! I love this idea! Thanks so much for this, I’ll be linking if you don’t mind.

  2. Oh my – just what I was looking for. I have a million beads lying around here and was wondering what to do with them apart from boring long necklaces… Now I know. Thanks for the detailed instructions. I shall try and I hope it will turn out as beautiful as your earrings!!!

  3. I just made one of these. Great tutorial & very easy to follow. Thanks so much!

  4. Very nice tutorial. Well done! I’ve posted a link. Thanks for sharing.

  5. Heather O. says

    Love it! Was trying to make these from written instructions and couldn’t get it. Finally, success! Thank you.

  6. Great project! I just wanted to let you know that we featured this project on our Facebook page with almost 12,000 fans. We’d love it if you’d use our Featured Blogger button, available at: Our audience loved the project and we look forward to sharing more from you. Please let us know if you have any questions or projects you’d love us to feature! Thanks!

  7. That's Sew Taylor! says

    Such a great tutorial!!!!! Thanks so much! Blessings! <><

  8. Hey! quite a great tutorial. Just finished one ball right now.
    Thanks thanks thanks…
    keep it up!

  9. YAY!!! So glad I found you! I have been trying to learn to make these for awhile! Thank you!

  10. Your tutorial is the best! I have checked so many others, and they are so confusing…. Yours is clear and this is a keeper for me. Thank you sooooo much!!!!

  11. Thank you so much for the photo-tutorial and the explinations. I finally did my first beaded ball thank to you tutorial, after i’ve tried a couple of times some video-tutorials. Thank you again.


    I love this idea but i cant do…..


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