I Have Gone Peyote Cuff Bracelet Crazy!!

Wednesday, September 17

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While going through my beading supplies trying to decide what to work on next, I came across two unfinished bracelet “baggers”.

Meaning they didn’t end up matching the picture floating around in my brain so they were bagged and forgotten about. And as soon as I saw them, an idea popped into my head. This time I knew exactly how to finish them.

Add buttons!!

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I loved how they turned out so I made TWO MORE. This color is called Root Beer.

Then I made even more…. in green, brown and lavender.

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The lavender leaf charm bracelet looks really nice on top of the cuff bracelet. Two bracelets worn together. Sounds weird but oh so cute.

See… I told you I had gone cuff bracelet crazy.

Peyote Beading and Following a Graph Design

Wednesday, September 17

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Slow going. Really slow.

I saw a bracelet in one of my craft books and wanted to try it. BUT… being the “can peyote in my sleep” type of beader, I never attempted it since I would have to plot it out first on graph paper. And then follow it!!

Yesterday I decided to go for it.

I searched online and found several sites with peyote graphs. Coloring the circles with marker pens was the easiest part. Following it and staying the course proved a bit harder. I read all the tips and tricks on how to follow a design. I found simply drawing a line through the row after completing it helped some but talk about eyes going crossed!! It was really slow. What should have taken about an hour took 2 1/2 hours.

Right now it measures 7″. I haven’t decided how to finish it off. I am leaning toward adding a pretty flat large light green button on one end and making a simple beaded loop. Or I may add a barrel sliding clasp. I like it and plan to make another one using this pattern. Then I am going to be brave and create my own design.

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Bracelet was created using flat even count peyote. Base row of 12 beads. Then I added one single row of brick stitch so I could continue the green color at the bottom. Original pattern only had green beads on one edge. I also added the trees on the left and right. I do that a lot, change up stuff as I work.

Supplies used:
8/0 seed beads in bronze, root beer and light green
Nymo thread
Size 12 beading needle

More photos.

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Peyote and the Dreaded 1st 3 Rows


I have heard other crafters say Peyote is hard to do. But for some reason it was easy for me to learn. I picked up the stitch in only a few days.

In January 2008, I took two peyote classes. Different instructors. Seven hours total. Both classes gave instructions for making a bracelet. First class was REALLY simple. Nothing but beads lined up in rows. Bead after bead, row after row.

The second class was the one that got my attention. That bracelet had two sizes of seedbeads, Swarovski crystals, and a clasp added with stringing wire. It had top and bottom bead embellishments on top of that!! It was a lot to learn in one session but I made it through the class and left with a bracelet around my wrist.

So… that is how peyote became my new BFF. I was hooked and still am. I could peyote all day and night.

You are probably thinking, what does that have to do with you??!!

Well, I am going to show you how to get past the first three rows of peyote so you will love it as much as I do.

Here is a step-by-step illustration complete with photos. Pardon my fuzzy pictures. My camera always decides to act ugly when I need it the most. I will have to retake these photos… some day. But hopefully you can make out the direction of the beads. At least try it and see if you are successful, ok?

How to Start 4 Bead Flat Even Count Peyote


Supplies needed for this demonstration:

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  • Size 6 or Size 8 seed beads
  • Thread to match seed beads
  • Thread conditioner (I use Thread Heaven)
  • Size 11 or 12 needle. (long or short)
  • One head pin with a ball on the end
  • Masking tape
  • Scissors

Step 1.

Stretch your thread by pulling on it. Pulling helps remove loops and curls created when thread was wound onto the bobbin. After stretching, condition by running it through Thread Heaven, a wax coating. Run thread through your fingers. OK, you should now be able to stitch with little or no tangling.

Step 2.

Thread 1 yard of thread on needle. Fuse a small ball on one end of thread with cigarette lighter or match.

Step 3.

Pick up 4 seed beads.  String thread through them and leave about 8″ of thread as a tail. (You will use this thread later to secure that end of the beading when finished.) These 4 beads are Row 1.

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Step 4.

Push the head pin through bead # 1 and bead #3.  Now the row has changed. Beads 1 and 3 are Row 1. Beads 2 and 4 are Row 2.

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Step 5.

Pick up a bead, PUT YOUR LEFT HAND DOWN ON THE 4 BEADS. DO NOT LET THEM MOVE. DO NOT LIFT THEM OFF THE MAT. Sew up through Bead 2.  WATCH THE THREAD. DO NOT LET IT TANGLE OR TWIST AROUND THE HEAD PIN.  Slowly pull on thread.  Pull tight so bead sits in the open slot.

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Pick up another bead. Again, put your left hand down on the beads. Don’t let them move. Sew up through bead 4. Pull tight. Bead should fit in the open space below bead #4.

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Step 6.

The key to getting the beads to stay put long enough for you to make it to Row 3 is non-movement and fixing thread tangles immediately without lifting the beads from the mat. Repeat Step 5 several more times.

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Take the thread tail at the beginning and wrap it around the head pin, getting it out of your way.

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Put a small piece of masking tape, top and bottom, on the beginning rows.  This gives you something to hold onto and not have to worry about the beads shifting.  You can now pick up your work and peyote in your hand.

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Step 7.

Now you are ready to do some serious peyoting.  Continue adding 2 beads in each pass. I flip my beadwork so I am always sewing UPwards. You do what works best for you.  So for me, the process is…. Add 1 bead, add 1 bead, flip. Add 1 bead, add 1 bead, flip. And so on…until I reach the desired length.

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Step 8. Right side. To end your project and secure the thread, sew through several beads, exit thread on the underside, cut thread leaving enough to fuse a small ball with cigarette lighter or match.

Step 9. Left side. This is the side you started on, where you have 8″ of thread under the masking tape. Remove masking tape. Thread the 8″ onto a needle, sew through several beads, exit thread on the underside, cut thread leaving enough to fuse a small ball.

So… that is it. This is how to peyote and make it beyond the first three rows. You can now select a larger project.

Go For It!!

Introducing This Year’s Dozen

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Note to self: Cross “create a blog” off to-do-list. I finally did it!! Will I say anything of interest to anyone? Will I embarrass or make a fool of myself? Only time will tell.

Well, for starters, I am Donna or otherwise known in my quite tiny and limited crafty world as don_mae.  I am recently retired and no longer an 8-to-5 clock watcher. I can stay up as late as I wish and drink liquids past midnight. Woo-hoo!!

In the wee hours you can usually find me in pj’s blinking and staring at my computer monitor. I like to play card games or post witty comments for my on-line buddies to read with their morning coffee.  But mainly I like deciding which pile of beads needs “therapy” the most. You see, I have a thing for beads, as in making pretty jewelry BEADS. I have them in bins, boxes, bags, on shelves, in drawers, under tables. They are everywhere!!  I like to occasionally pick them up and imagine what part of the body they will eventually adorn.  Then back they go, in their safe places, until I envision the next brilliant idea for necklaces, bracelets or earrings.

Lately, the ideas popping up have been with tiny beads lined up in rows of 6 or 8. Peyote Flat Even Count.  I recently took a couple of peyote classes and now I am hooked. I have to admit I was so clueless to peyote that I called ahead to see if wire would be used. LOL!! Nope, it is all done with needle and thread. Granted, I am a beginner and am limited to simple designs but I am enjoying the process of seeing the beads line up in rows of pretty colors.

Here are two examples of peyote bracelets I designed and created in purple and olive green. I named them Square Links.  I am currently working on a multi-colored bracelet with a matching necklace.

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In addition to sewing peyote jewelry, I also like to string beads on wire.  Now I have to figure out how to incorporate beading into my other crafty interests:  macrame and sewing.

Over the next few weeks (months) my plan is to expand my knowledge and stray from my comfort zone AND BLOG ABOUT IT.

  • I want to learn new and exciting jewelry techniques.
  • I want to turn some of my draft macrame designs into actual items.
  • I also need to reintroduce myself to a “new” one year old sewing machine in need of dusting off. Hello, Janome!! I will get you out from under the table!! Promise!!

Oh yeah, BTW, This Year’s Dozen represents the calendar year, Jan-Dec, and my blog will focus on my learning experiences during these months. Since January and February are history, my Year’s Dozen will begin with March.

So, hopefully you will come back as I embark on some new experiences.