Monday, September 23, 2013

Quickie Beaded Crochet Bracelet

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There isn’t any way around having to wet-block two-stranded knitting, so while I’m waiting for that to dry, I made this little bracelet.  Blair made something similar a few weeks ago, but the technique she used involves having to plan ahead and string the beads onto the cord ahead of time, but I am a lazybones and since I would rather have my teeth drilled than plan something ahead of time, I decided to try and figure out another way.   There are two techniques I know of for adding beads to a knitted object—in one, you string them ahead of time (planning!  ugh!) and in the other, you use a crochet hook to slip the bead over the stitch, and I didn’t see why that wouldn’t work here, too, in crochet.  It worked great, and I made this bracelet in about ten minutes.  Here’s a quickie tutorial for you, in case you want to make one, too:

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I started with one skein of #5 perle cotton, a bunch of cube-shaped metal beads with large-ish holes, and one of those scary-tiny steel crochet hooks our grandmas used to make the lace trim for their petticoats. 

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You’ll want to use a hook large enough to grab the thread but with a small enough hook end to fit through the holes in your beads.  I used a size 5.

Make a slip knot, and chain 7.  In the next chain, add a bead by putting the hook through the hole, then work the stitch as usual—just grab the thread and hook it through both the bead and the loop.  Like this:

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It might be a little fiddly at first, but not too bad.  Chain 7 again, and add another bead.  Keep going until the chain is long enough to wrap around your wrist three or four times, or however long you want it, and join the ends together with a slip stitch.  Cut the end and weave it in.  That’s it.  The cotton is stretchy enough that you should be able to just wrap it around your wrist without having to do any sort of clasp, but if you want one anyway, you could add a loop at one end and a small, lightweight button at the other. 

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This technique works better for me than having to figure out ahead of time how long I want the chain to be and stringing the right number of beads onto the thread in the beginning.  I am a wing-it kind of girl, what can I say.  You are limited by having to choose a bead with a big enough hole for the hook to fit through, but there are more beads in the world than there are blackberries in the bramble, so no big deal.  Happy crafting!