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

The first way to join a Kaleidocycle

As I make the video on our different joins, I am spending this weekend experimenting with as many ways to sew my 24 Flat Peyote Triangles into a Kaleidocyle as I can imagine. From a flat net to individual Tetrahedra, I am making them all with the same 24 Triangles. They don’t mind. Each one of them is a finished unit.

If you are a first-time Cycler, this is the first thing I would like you to try in your own assembly. It’s really simple.

Take three of your Triangle faces (18 pieces, 6 each of three designs) and sew them into a little quilt, like this. Put Hinges (this means just add one more row of beads) between the six places marked.

One of your Hinges will be open, so that the little quilt can lie flat. Use a medium tension; no loose thread, but nothing pulled super tight. Your quilt should be able to lie flat, and also to fold up.

Machine 5.jpg

It doesn’t matter what beads you use to join your Triangles. Our team likes round beads for this, because they make such sturdy natural hinges, but you can use any bead that fits, and that you enjoy. Some people want to follow the pattern. If so, you may be using cylinder beads for yours.

You can sew up this little quilt with any threadpath that makes sense to you. Treat this as an exploration, and give yourself permission to make a few mistakes! Use a thread until you finish it, or come to a point where you paint yourself into a corner, it doesn’t matter. It’s OK to assemble this quilt with seven short threads or one long one. Whatever makes you comfortable.

Don’t forget the Hinges!

Play with this little quilt, and fold it into as many little packets and boxes as you can (there are quite a few) and I’ll be back with you later today to show you how to join it up.

This little layout will answer a lot of questions about the potential we have with this form.


About katemckinnon

Kate McKinnon has devoted herself to the study of how things are done, and how they could be done better. Find her at or on some city street, walking fast, smiling at strangers.

9 comments on “The first way to join a Kaleidocycle

  1. monica plimack
    November 6, 2018

    Where can I find instructions for a bracelet using my 24 triangles?

  2. Judith Leatherberry
    May 8, 2018

    I gotta start making my triangles! I’m waaaayyyy behind ya’ll…now to find my delicas!

  3. Jeanne Evans
    May 8, 2018

    I so wish I had zipped my triangles together using this method as it appears to allow for much neater folding! Good going Kate and crew đŸ™‚

  4. Jacqueline Walker
    May 7, 2018

    My first attempt let’s see how it goes

  5. Claire
    May 7, 2018


  6. SonDoras Miles
    May 7, 2018

    Roger that!

  7. Jennifer S. Fulks
    May 6, 2018

    Just working on my first kaleidocycle. I will follow this carefully, and thanks so much.

  8. Amy
    May 6, 2018

    Brilliant! Thanks!

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This entry was posted on May 6, 2018 by .
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