Top 5 Favorite Stitches

So many beads, so little time!
Peyote. Right-angle weave. Netting. Herringbone. Square stitch. These five stitches rank highest in every survey, project commentary, and request we hear on Beading Daily and in our magazines. And these are just the basics—each technique has spins from the flat versions, including circular, tubular, multi-drop, spiral, and other dimensional variations.

What makes these stitches our favorites?
There are tons more stitches we love, of course. I've taught 24 different stitch lessons  for DoodleBeads and Beads, Baubles, and Jewels and have plenty more to go. But here's why I think these particular 5 stitches are so popular:

One of the first stitches most of us learn, peyote instructions abound, and it’s a relatively easy stitch to pick up. Peyote stitch has a history in Native American traditions. Try these Soft Bangles by Cathi Tessier if you’re new to peyote or just want to make something fun and fast.

Right-angle weave
It seems we love using crystals most of all in RAW, as it is often called. Maybe that’s why we love it—because it gives us such a great way to stitch something sparkly. Worked with either one- or two-needle variations, cubic versions are enticingly architectural. Learn the flat version first, as in Nancy Zellers’ RAW Crystal Cuff. 

Here’s a technique with centuries of ethnic heritage. In her Netted Diamonds collar, renowned Ukrainian beadweaver Maria Rypan shares a project rich in tradition, both in technique and the colorful pattern.

Also called Ndebele (say, en-deh-BELLY) this fast, flexible, and fluid stitch is named for the African tribe known for their colorful work in this technique. Easy to use with different sizes of beads, it’s fun to work flat, but it also makes dynamite tubular ropes, such as Nancy Cain’s Crystal Drop lariat. Her method to flare the ends makes it worth checking out this project!

Square stitch
Because square-stitched beads sit in aligned rows vertically and horizontally, it makes it easy to follow or create geometric patterns. In Turn It Over by Gabrielle Neijman, her pendant has different color patterns on each side, for a fun switcheroo to match your fashion style du jour.

Get 43 projects PLUS a DVD with 12 basic lessons!
We have tons of projects for you using just these 5 top stitches—43 favorite designs—and you can get them all in the special issue, Favorite Bead Stitches, from Beadwork magazine. PLUS, you get a copy of DoodleBeads with my tips on learning 12 basic stitches!

Like I said—so many beads, so little time!

Do you have a different fave stitch? Tell us about below.


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