How to Create Beautiful Beaded Floral Patterns Using Crescent-Shaped Beads
From the dawn of time, patterns have existed in the natural world. Early philosophers studied such patterns, attempting to explain order in nature. Think of the animal kingdom, with the prevalence of spots and stripes, or certain spiral patterning found in plants and animals. And it’s easy to spot surface patterns visible on windswept sand dunes or in ocean waves.
For many of us beaders, the greatest source of inspiration is nature. One way to work from nature is to select a favorite photo and use it to derive a color palette, then create a beaded design around that palette. Kerry Bogert, Editorial Director for Interweave Books, shares tips on using palette-generating apps specifically for this purpose here.
Another way of working from nature is to select a favorite motif, such as a specific flower or other plant. A favorite beaded project of mine is Nichole Starman’s Anemone Bracelet, which was inspired by the sea creatures but also doubles as a floral motif. Look closely and you’ll see that this bracelet exhibits both symmetrical and asymmetrical elements.
Nichole is masterful at creating designs using various shaped beads and expertly fitting them together to form stunning architectural pieces, such as her Avignon Bracelet, which combines CzechMates tiles and QuadraTiles, or her Xanadu Necklace, which use crescents and QuadraLentil shaped beads.
In her instructional video, Floral Patterns and Crescent Beads, Nichole talks extensively about the versatility of crescent beads, how their concave and convex sides can be used in either direction, and how they can be used to create floral-inspired designs with a wide variety of looks and textures. She explains how the shape of the crescent sets it apart from other half-moon shapes in that they can be combined together to make a sphere like slices of an orange. See how they are perfect for creating flower shapes because of the curvature found in floral designs?
Nichole also shares tips for designing with asymmetry, such as using identical shapes and sizes of beads among varying stitched components, and how to maintain a balanced design. She then walks us through, step-by-step, in creating the gorgeous Anemone Bracelet shown above. Even though Nichole uses several colors of beads in the bracelet, she creates two components of each color and systematically arranges them for a consistent look. She also balances the colors in the center of the floral components with the colors used in the accent border. Design tips from a pro!
Whether you are inspired by Nichole’s use of shaped beads to form sculptural or architectural elements, or desire to learn the ins and outs of creating beaded designs inspired by floral motifs found in nature, I encourage you to check out Nichole’s Floral Patterns and Crescent Beads video today.
Debbie Blair, Editor, Beadwork magazine
To learn more about Nichole, the beads she’s designed, and her beadwork, check out these other posts:
Bead Weaving: Learn the Accordion Stitch with Nichole Starman
Beadweaving Floral Motifs and Fresh Thinking, with Nichole Starman
Beadweaving Hinges, Basting Stitches, and More From Nichole Starman
Dive into the shaped bead craze and learn from one of the best!