an open source architectural beadwork project from Kate McKinnon and a worldwide team of innovators

Bangles vs. Flat Bracelets

I’ve received queries from people who are unsure about how to get the edges of flat peyote to line up, so I thought I’d post a helpful layout from the Basics section of Volume II, coming soon.

There are many ways to do the job, and here are two of them, using one of Kate’s favorites, Square Stitch. Please note that this layout is a draft, and may be edited or updated. Click the image for a full-screen view, and please feel free to comment and share. What’s your favorite way to turn around at the edges?

Screen Shot 2014-03-23 at 4.42.53 PM

About katemckinnon

Kate McKinnon, globe-trotting writer and metalsmith, has devoted herself to the study of how things are done, and how they could be done better. She lives in Tucson, Arizona, and loves warm weather, nice people, rides in the car, and good books.

17 comments on “Bangles vs. Flat Bracelets

  1. Bracelets & Bangles
    November 16, 2017

    Thanks for the tips Kate & Zane! I know I could do this with a bigger needle with a bigger eye! Appreciate it!

  2. Marufur Rahman
    November 15, 2017

    Thanks for the tips Kate & Zane! I know I could do this with a bigger needle with a bigger eye! Appreciate it! Bracelets & Bangles

  3. Theopisti Triantafillidou
    July 16, 2014

    Could you please clarify a nymo issue? I hope you do. In the section basics: supplies
    you name nymo as an italian upholstery thread. I bought it in the cone form. When it arrived i saw it was by COATS company although the seller stated that it was made by Belding Corticelli Company. In your book you have a photo from a cone and i can see the COATS logo. But i am insecure if i have the correct one ,so i could proceed to more structural beadwork. I tried to find the answer alone but i falled to reassure my self. I do thank you for your time and mostly for your work that beautifies this world.

  4. LeAnn
    March 24, 2014

    Does this work for flat zigzag strips? I can’t tell from the photos if the sample is a zigzag. Thanks.

  5. Karin Wiese
    March 24, 2014

    Sorry, it´s no comment on your wonderful bangles…
    It seems to be impossible to buy your book CGB Volume 1 or Geometric Beadwork by Jean Power at any German bookstore or via German amazon. The ISBN doesn´t work. Is there a way to alter this? When buying directly in USA the shipping is very expensive.
    Sorry for my old fashioned school english….

    Karin Wiese

    • katemckinnon
      March 24, 2014

      Hi! With pleasure, I point you to DiMarca online, who can ship either book to you quite easily and for a reasonable postage cost.
      Here is the information, which can also be found on the CGB Volume I direct order page in my shop:

      You may mail-order directly from within Europe and the UK at these links (copy and paste into your browser if necessary):

      Europe: DiMarca Online (Marca Smit)

      UK: Spangles 4 Beads (Carole Morris)

  6. Jeanne Evans
    March 23, 2014

    Boy, do I have a thick head! To me the figure looks like the thread is coming out of the last white bead in a row and a red end bead is needed. The red bead gets picked up and square stitched to the blue bead below (say that 3 times fast!). The the thread crosses itself, a white bead is picked up and the new bead is put in place going from the blue bead to the new white bead, so it skips the red row in between. If I’m understanding this right, the new white bead is not connected to the end red bead at all…very different from how I do an odd turn around on peyote. Will have to give it a go.

    • katemckinnon
      March 24, 2014

      Jeanne, for anyone reading your comment, let me point out that you are describing the right-hand page (final bead of the current row) and not the left. You are right, that technically the new white bead will not be connected in the normal way to the red end bead, but that’s only when it is first placed. In the next round, they will all be neatly connected again and as you can see by my photo, look normal and lie flat.

      My method works well for me, building shapes, but as mentioned before, if I were doing flat peyote work with plain edges, and not much structure, or if I were using thinner, slippier thread, I would use a figure-8 placement. In the piece shown, I haven’t actually decided on my clasp structure, so I will definitely be wanting to get into some of those edge beads later on. I’d like to leave my options open in general, so I try to stick with one-pass thread levels until I know where I’m headed with the piece.

  7. Eileen Montgomery
    March 23, 2014

    My way seems more complicated but it makes a nice secure edge. In Figure 1 on the right, I go from the last white through the top blue bead, pick up the red, go through the last white, the white in the row below, then through the top blue and the red bead a second time with the needle positioned to begin the next row.

    • katemckinnon
      March 23, 2014

      Thanks! I have done that as well, but find it tends to bulk up my edges. What sort of thread do you use, Eileen?

      • Eileen Montgomery
        March 23, 2014

        I use Nymo B on cones mostly. I can’t feel much difference in my edges but it does take longer than your square stitch method.

        • katemckinnon
          March 24, 2014

          I have different feelings about the turnaround depending on what I am making… I don’t like to overfill my edge beads, personally, because I take a reinforcing pass at the end of my work, and I want to leave my options open before I call the piece finished. If I decide to add something at the edge, and the beads are full of thread… not so easy.

          But then I tend to work in an exploratory fashion, not following a pattern or knowing in advance exactly what will be demanded of each bead. So I’ve evolved to choosing threadpaths that don’t put any extra passes of thread other than in weave-ins and weave-outs, and taking a run around the edges when the work is finished.

          I always think that people should use the threadpaths that make the most sense for their tension and their piece- I have about five ways to do the turnaround, and will try to show as many as are mentioned in the book and Pattern Library. I appreciate everyone’s input!

        • katemckinnon
          March 24, 2014

          Oh, that’s right, you are a Nymo girl too. 🙂 You know, re edges, the really noticeably bulky moment for me comes when I go back through the edge beads (which I always do, either to reinforce or fool around with a clasp attachment) and some have two and some have three passes…. that’s when I find things get a little tight, because I am going to want to add at least one more pass.

          It would be good to add some text to this page that makes it clear that as a maker, I always take a fresh thread and go through all of my edges as a final pass- whether or not I’ve provided for the clasp with my first run of beadwork. In the piece shown, I haven’t- I’ll probably add a few snap strips, a la Ingrid Wangsvik.

  8. dbednarek
    March 23, 2014

    The combination of excellent photos and text is superb.

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