A Mala is a type of prayer bead used in Buddhism to keep count while chanting mantras.
The Mala is held in the right hand and one bead is counted per chant. One starts at the Guru bead (the larger three holed bead) and counts one bead per chant. When you reach the guru bead again you turn the Mala around and continue chanting in the opposite direction (so you do not cross the bead)
Different streams of Buddhism make the Mala slightly differently.
This tutorial will show you how to make a 108 bead mala with 3 additional spacer beads.
This is an unknotted Mala, but you can also make one with knots between each bead.
You will need
108 beads (stone or wood are traditional) 6mm or 8mm make a nice sized mala.
3 beads to use as spacers (it is nice to use a pretty gemstone like turquoise here)
nylon thread (can also use elastic)
Small crochet hook (less than 1mm)
guru bead and tower bead.
Larger pretty bead to place on tassel
Tassel on loop of string
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Step 1: Thread the Beads
Cut a length of string (you will need about 1 meter of string or longer if you are using larger beads)
Start treading the beads onto your string.
it is useful to tie something to the end of the string so the beads don't fall off.
Thread 27 beads.
Count the beads and double check there is 27.
Then add a spacer bead.
Step 2: Repeat
Thread another 27 beads then add a spacer.
then another 27 beads and a spacer.
then another 27 beads.
Now your beads should have 4 lengths of 27 beads and 3 spacers.
Double check that all lengths are the same and they all have 27 beads.
Step 3: Thread the Guru Bead
Thread the guru bead (see threading a guru bead 1& 2 for detailed tutorial how to do this)
Thread string through bead as a normal bead then pull through middle hole with crochet hook.
Step 4: Add Pretty Beads and Tower to Tassel
Thread the beads you want on the tassel onto the crochet hook.
hook the end of the tassel and push beads onto the string.
Repeat with the tower bead.
Step 5: Add Tassel to Beads
Tie the string coming out from the guru bead to the tassel.
Tie a tight knot and repeat a couple of times.
Then cut ends and push the knot into the guru bead with crochet hook.
Step 6: Finished
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Dharmashine: mala and supplies shop.
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