Intro: How to Make a Seed Bead Bracelet
This bracelet is really cute and relatively simple to make. One cool thing about it is that you can easily make it as thick as you want pick whatever kind of clasp you would like. My sister is also posting a version this instructable on her page very soon (to avoid arguing over who got to do this one we both did a version of it) but her bracelet has a slightly different clasp.
You will need:
~ Small seed beads
~ Slightly larger accent beads (optional)
~ Sewing thread/Fireline/something your seed beads will fit over
~ Small sewing needle your seed beads will fit over
There are multiple types of clasps you can do. You can do just a regular toggle or lobster clasp, or you can make an embroidery-threaded loop that I will show you in this instructable. For that clasp, you will need:
~ Embroidery thread that matches your beads
~ Any kind of large button or a coin with a hole in the middle and a bead that is bigger that the hole (this will make more sense if you look at the pictures). I found these coins at a thrift store but you can probably find them at certain bead stores.
* Speaking of the pictures, they have weirdly different tints because I took the pictures with two different cameras at different times of day. Sorry about that and I hope it isn't too strange.
Step 1: Making the Clasp (Part 1)
If you have decided that you don't want to make the clasps and would rather just use a toggle or lobster clasp, skip the these steps. If not, follow along :). If you are doing this with a button, then just pretend the coin in these steps is the button you are using.
First cut off 2 ft or so of the embroidery thread and slip the largish bead onto it. Put both ends through the coin and even up those ends. Tie on another strand of equal length right where the original thread comes out from the coin so there are three strands (the folded in half one equals two, see the picture). Pin down the coin so it stays in place and spread out the strands.
Step 2: Making the Clasp (Part 2)
Now you will be making square knots. Take the thread on the left and cross it over the middle thread in a 4 shape. Then take the right thread and pull it over the horizontal end part of the 4, under the middle thread and the intersecting part of the 4 and back over the pointed end of the 4. That probably sounded really confusing, but hopefully the pictures help (as a last resort, there is google of course). For the next knot, do all of the steps in the reverse. Make a backwards 4 with the thread on the right. With the thread on the left, go over, under, and over again. Then switch. Each time you do the knot, switch the steps like that.
Once you have made a small-ish length of square knots, tie it in a loop at the base of the coin. Make sure the knot is super tight, and then cut off the excess. Then make another square knot loop and tie it off. Make sure that the second loop just barely fits over the coin, so when these are holding your bracelet together, the loop won't just slip off.They will work just like a toggle clasp.
Step 3: The Beading Part!
Take a piece of the sewing thread that is twice the length of what you want the bracelet to be. Thread the needle with it and poke it through the embroidery thread loop. Even up the ends of the sewing thread and tie a knot to make them stay even. If you are using a different type of clasp, just tie it around some part of the clasp. Now you should have two pieces of thread of equal lengths that is secure with the clasp. Thread the needle, and start putting the beads on. Every so often, put on one of the accent beads. Be careful not to let the beads spill off. When the length of beads is as long as you would like it to be, poke the needle through the other clasp (or just tie it if it isn't the embroidery thread kind) and make sure there is a really secure knot. You have the first beaded strand!
Step 4: Continue!
Keep repeating this process with the beads until the bracelet is as thick as you want it. I stopped at 8 lengths of beads but you of course can make yours bigger or smaller. You are done!