Have you seen the brand new pellet beads from Preciosa Ornela? We just got them in stock in over 50 colors and finishes! They are such a fun little bead. When trying to come up with a new project to feature them, a co-worker suggested I try something on the Ricks Beading Loom. I hadn’t used it since taking Paul Ricks’ class in early May, so I decided to get out my supplies and give it a shot.
I tried it one way, and the pattern didn’t quite work out as planned. After re-drafting my pattern, I was able to come up with a design I love and I hope you love it too! I also used KO thread for the first time. When Paul was here, he suggested that we carry this thread, as he feels it’s far superior to anything on the market. I completely agree! Other threads are prone to tangling and fraying, but not KO! It’s really heavy-duty and working with it is a breeze.
There are a lot of steps to this tutorial, so I have broken it up into three parts. The first part will show you how to set up your loom. In the second part, I will discuss the looming process and the bracelet pattern. The third part will show you how to finish off your loomed piece with a toggle clasp. I tried to make it as easy to follow as possible.
Ricks Beading Loom
White KO Beading Thread
Mary Arden Size 10 Beading Needles
120pc – Color A, 4mm Czech Faceted Round Beads - Silk Light Gold
61pc – Color B, 4mm Czech Faceted Round Beads – Satin Light Brown
60pc – Color C, 4mm Czech Faceted Round Beads – Luster Turquoise Green
60pc – Color D, 4x6mm Czech Pellet Beads - Pink Stone Finish
5pc – Color E, 4x6mm Czech Pellet Beads – Metallic Copper
1pc – Floral Copper Toggle Clasp
Steps: How to Set Up the Loom (Instructions from the Ricks Beading Loom Site HERE)
1) Set your loom to 6.5 inches by measuring from rod to rod. (Image 1)
2) Pull several inches off of the spool of thread and wrap one end around the wooden peg and secure it in the slot. Place the peg into the second opening from the left. (Images 2-3)
3) With the thread still on the spool, you will begin to set your warp threads. Bring the spool over the top of the headstock rod. (Image 4)
4) Bring your spool OVER and around the tailstock rod. (Image 5)
5) Bring your spool UNDER the headstock rod and continue this process until you get to your last warp thread. (Images 6-7)
6) You must have one more thread than beads in your row. Since this pattern calls for 7 beads across, you will need 8 threads. Be sure to end your warps with your thread OVER the rod. (Image 8)
7) Wrap the thread around the peg and secure it in the slot before snipping it from the spool. Insert the peg into the second hole from the right. (Image 9)
8) Tighten the threads evenly. You can do this by twisting the pegs. It’s easiest to tighten the outside threads and then gently pull on the center ones to even out the tension. (Image 10)
9) Pull off a length of thread in a workable length (about a yard) and secure one end in a wooden peg. Put the peg into the left-most hole. Thread the other end into your needle. (Image 11)
10) Using the warp separator card (included w/ the loom) or a business card, separate the warp threads. The threads should be over and under the card as shown. (Image 12)
Steps: Building the Bracelet
11) Bring your threaded needle under the warp threads and string on 7 beads in color B. (Image 14) Tip: Keep your beads to the left of the loom to easily thread the needle.
12) From underneath your warp threads, put one bead in between each thread. Thread the needle back through the beads and pull tight. It’s a good idea, when threading the first several rows, to thread the needle into the beads backwards, to avoid piercing the threads with the needle.
13) Bring your needle underneath the warp threads and string on 3 beads in color A, one pellet bead in color D and three more beads in color A. Thread the needle back through the row and pull tight.(Image 13)
14) String row three in the same process above in this order: 2 pieces color A, 1 piece color D, 1 piece color C, 1 piece color D, and 2 pieces color A. (Image 15)
15) Remove the warp separator card and slide the beads down the warp threads until you come to the headstock rod. (Image 16-17)
16) Continue adding beads in the same process outlined above in this order: 1 piece color A, 1 piece color D, 3 pieces color C, 1 piece color D, and 1 piece color A. (Image 18)
17) Row 5: 1 piece color D, 2 pieces color C, 1 piece color E, 2 pieces color C, and 1 piece color D.
19) Row 6: 1 piece color A, 1 piece color D, 3 pieces color C, 1 piece color D, and 1 piece color A. (Image 19)
20) Row 7: 2 pieces color A, 1 piece color D, 1 piece color C, 1 piece color D, and 2 pieces color A.
21) Row 8: 3 pieces color A, 1 piece color D, and 3 pieces color A. (Image 20)
22) Row 9: 7 pieces color B.
23) When you run out of thread, bring your needle back through several rows and secure with surgeon’s knots in between several different beads. I will usually make 3 separate knots. (Images 22-24)
24) Thread a new piece of string onto the needle and string through the beads, several rows back. Tie several surgeon’s knots in different places and continue on beading the pattern. (Images 26-28)
Steps: Finishing the Bracelet
25) Continue the above pattern until you run out of space. The diamond pattern should repeat 5 times.
26) Squish the beads down the warp threads, toward the head stock. The beads may “wrinkle” a little bit. Complete the last row, it will be snug. (Image 29)
27) Remove the bracelet from the warp rods. (Images 30-31)
28) On the end of the bracelet with only one string (the opposite end will have 3 strings) thread your needle onto the string.
29) String on 5 beads in color B. (Image 32)
30) Thread the needle through the loop on the hoop end of the toggle clasp. (Image 33)
31) Bring the needle back through the first bead, then add 4 more beads in color B. (Images 34-35)
32) String the needle through the first row of beads and pull snug. (Images 36-37)
33) Thread the needle through the clasp section several more times to reinforce the connection.
34) After reinforcing the clasp, bead through the next several rows and tie surgeon’s knots in several different areas. Trim excess. (Image 38)
35) Thread the excess warp thread onto the needle, bead through the rows and tie off with surgeon’s knots. Repeat with the second warp thread. Trim excess.
36) Thread the needle with the remaining thread and string on 6 beads in color B.
37) Thread the needle through the loop on the bar end of the toggle clasp. (Image 42)
38) Bring the needle back through the first two beads, then add 4 more beads in color B. (Images 43-44)
39) Finish off the bracelet as outlined in steps 32-34 above.
WHEW! Did you get all of that? I know it seems complicated, but really, the Ricks Beading Loom makes it easy. And the project only takes 1-2 hours to complete. Since I am now comfortable using the loom, it took me a little over an hour to finish the second bracelet.
I just love the way the pellet beads look inside the pattern. With so many colors available, this bracelet is really easy to customize. I’m sort of in love with this color combination though, isn’t it just dreamy? The colors just blend and flow nicely and the copper clasp brings it all together.
The finished bracelet measures 8 inches, so it is a little loose for my taste . Any adjustment in size however, would alter the pattern and it wouldn’t finish up so evenly. I’m willing to wear a bracelet that’s a little on the big side with a pattern that pretty? Aren’t you? I think I may need to make another version of this bracelet with silver and black beads or maybe a blue one? The possibilities are limitless!
Right now, until July 3rd all of our BRAND NEW Czech products are on sale for 10%. That means you can get the pellet beads used in this tutorial for a special introductory price. You can also find thorns and spikes and daggers and new styles of neon beads!