Monday, November 4, 2013

Stringing Beads onto your Knitting: A Tutorial

There are two ways you can add beads to your knitting: 1. You can thread the beads you need onto your ball of yarn before you start. But make sure you put on enough, and be ready for the extra wear and tear that will put on your yarn as all those beads are repeatedly pushed further down the line of string.

Or 2. You can add the beads as you go. It takes less prep time, but really slows down the knitting time. But you don't have to guess how many beads you need (or count them if you know how many you need--I mean counting is relatively easy but beaded projects quickly get into the hundreds of beads needed and that is just tedious) and it is easier on the working yarn.

I am working on a little something that required beads and the instructions called for adding the beads as you went. The pattern suggested using a tiny crochet hook. I have heard this before and have a hard time picturing a crochet hook so small it would fit through a tiny bead. I know they exist or people wouldn't be talking about them all the time, but I certainly do not have one.

So I made my own solution. I took some very light weight and flexible wire I have for beading. I cut a piece about 6 inches and bent it back on itself like a V. At first I used it with the ends even, but it's much easier if one end is longer than the other.
When you get to the stitch you want to add a bead to, you stop.
Then you slide the wire through the stitch:
Then put the bead onto the wire:
Now pull the stitch off of the left neede,
and slide the bead down onto the stitch:
Then put the stitch back onto the left needle:
Remove the wire and knit the stitch like normal:
You have now added a bead to your knitting and it will sparkle! :)
Repeat hundreds and hundreds of times.

(I know, sounds tedious, right? It's knitting--get used to it. You either like it or you don't.)

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