How to Make the Best Beaded Bezels from the Pros
Hard to believe, but it’s time for some of the Bead & Jewelry team here at Interweave to plan our annual trip to the Tucson Bead Shows at the end of January. I make a point to visit as many of the vendors as possible that sell materials and tools to make beaded bezels. And I like to bring back the latest and greatest to share with our readers. Hey, it’s a tough job, but someone’s got to do it!
I’ve also been known to trek down to what’s known as “the strip” — an area of town near the interstate with a flea-market type of atmosphere. Here, you can find everything from geodes and metaphysical vendors to African art and even dinosaur skeletons. And lots and lots of gemstone cabochons!
My typical haul consists of seed beads, unique metal components, and drilled gemstones for my personal stash. But what to do with the beautiful cabochons I can’t help but pick up? Turn them into beaded bezels, of course! Beaded bezels can be made into pendants, rings, or earrings. They can become the focal of an intricate bead-embroidered cuff. And they make stunning brooches or pins.
If you have a gemstone cabochon, crystal rivoli, or other fancy shaped bead (or button) without a hole, you’ll want to create a beaded bezel. The most common technique used to create a beaded bezel is peyote stitch. However, read on to see how top Beadwork artists have created bezels using circular netting, backstitch bead embroidery, netting, tubular peyote combined with square stitch, and right-angle weave.
Garden Jewel Necklace, by Cindy Holsclaw, uses circular netting and a fringe variation to form the beaded bezel that circles a gorgeous blue Swarovski crystal rivoli. Cindy expertly builds layers of Japanese seed beads, magatama drops, Tilas, and fire-polished rounds to nestle the stunning crystal.
The Bluet Blooms Bracelet, by Csilla Csirmaz, is formed by using netting with crystal pearl rounds and seed beads to form a four-sided bezel around each rivoli. Right-angle weave units are then formed between each rivoli component to complete the bracelet.
Bead Embroidered Bezels
Melanie Doerman’s Kaleidoscope Bracelet is a beautiful example of using backstitch bead embroidery to form a bezel that assimilates perfectly with the embellished peyote-stitched band.
Peyote Stitch Bezels
In the Tibetan Sunset Necklace, Smadar Grossman shows us how to use tubular peyote stitch combined with square stitch to bezel the sizable crystal rivoli, then forms a fringe embellishment on the bezel using right-angle weave. Two connectors are stitched, then attached to a chain for a complementary strap.
Anna Raymond’s Symphony Necklace combines tubular peyote stitch with flat and cubic right-angle weave to bezel a crystal pear and four crystal squares. She then uses cubic right-angle weave to form connections between the bezels.
Find detailed instructions for these 5 projects plus 3 more in the eBook 8 More Beaded Bezel Jewelry Projects Using Peyote Stitch, Bead Embroidery, and More.
Debbie Blair, Beadwork magazine
For more beaded bezel resources, see the Interweave Store!