Handy Hands Tatting
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Adding Beads

Beads are fun to use and add a little sparkle to your tatted piece. They can be added to any patterns to make it more elegant, add pizazz, or create a different look. There are only three ways to add beads in tatting.

Here is a guideline:
#8 extra fine needle - 11/0 bead-2.1mm or referred to as seed beads, use with Size 80 or 70 thread
#7 Fine needle - 11/0 bead-2.1mm or referred to as seed beads, use with Size 60, 50, 40, 30 or 20 thread
#5-0 needle - 8/0 bead-3.1mm, use with Size 20 or 10 thread

Images are clickable to larger images for your convenience.

Method 1:

Working off the ball, pre-string the beads onto the thread leaving them next to the ball. Pull up a bead when the pattern calls for it (Pb). This bead acts like a picot, but there are two ways to proceed. Photo #1 on the top needle, no space was left for a picot: on the bottom needle a 1/8 inch picot space was left. Photo #2 on the top needle, 4 beads (4Pb) were pulled up with no picot space. The bottom needle shows what the ring looks like with all of them in place.                                                

  Photo #1           Photo #2


Method 2:

When making a ring, you can put a bead on the tatting needle. This way the bead is between the double stitches. Photo #3, on the top needle, the bead sits between the double stitches without a picot; the bottom needle an 1/4 inch picot was left with the bead on the needle. Photo # 4 shows what the ring looks like with both of them in place. Before you begin tatting, be sure that the bead will go over the eye of the needle.

Photo #3               Photo #4


Method 3:

This method is a joining with a bead. Slip one bead on a Size 15 or 16 crochet hook, the joining picot, slide the bead onto the picot (+b), photo #5. Keep the crochet hook in the picot and immediately join; put the thread behind the picot, pull the thread through the picot, then put the thread on the needle as normal, photo #6. Finish the pattern. Photo # 7 shows the rings with a joining picot. The joining picot can be on rings or chains.

Photo #5             Photo #6


Photo #7

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