Peyote Triangle Patterns for Dummies

I start off with a confession. I am horrible at following patterns. I am not making this up. OK, I can follow sewing patterns because they are all flat on the table and you have a basic idea of what you are supposed to come out with. But I could never pull off a paint-by-number picture when I was a kid and my first attempts at origami went into the trash can.  I can, for the most part,  follow simple beading patterns.  (In fact, one of my first published articles was a beading project.)  But unless I can count beads easily, I am lost.  This means I am mostly ok with loom graphs, Cellini Spirals, bead crochet and  flat peyote graphs.  So I learned how to make a peyote triangle with little trouble.

When I began to salivate over  beaded kaleidocycles, (you can read all about them and download a free pdf  from the Contemporary Geometric Beadwork website here) and wanted to try making one,  I hopped over to YouTube to learn how to make peyote triangles. ( VPBiser has an excellent video tutorial here.)  But for the life of me I could not figure out how to make anything more interesting than a two-color basic  triangle and I wanted some more exciting variations for my kaleidocycles.

After making a few peyote triangles, I began to notice some patterns emerging.   I figured out how to make a three-color pyramid! (See chart below.  I am assuming you already know how to make a standard peyote triangle).



You can use the same reasoning to make a two-color pyramid.  If you simply alternate colors for each row, you can make a striped pattern.(See kaleidocycle picture in the bottom row.




You can see that for some triangles, I merely beaded rows in different colors much like you would crochet granny squares.    For the  triangles in the  bottom left-hand corner,  I started the triangle with white Delicas for the first two rows and began adding red Delicas in the third row.  From then on,  I added a red Delica whenever I could see that it would be totally surrounded by white Delicas.  This gave me a lovely chicken pox pattern.   If you double click on an image, you can view it full size.

I realize this might not be clear to some people, but the real aim of this post is to encourage you to find new ways to solve problems even if you think they’re over your head.  That’s the only way we learn.  Now that these peyote triangles make more sense to me, I think I’m ready to start tackling some more complex designs.

Triangle Beaded Beads

I have been experimenting with cross weaving which is sometimes referred to as two needle right angle weave.  It definitely uses a different set of “head muscles” than single needle RAW, but it’s not that difficult to learn.    Below are some examples of beads that I discovered by accident while trying to do something else.    My beads are not new discoveries; I have since found other examples of them  on the Internet.

Triangle weave is not right angle weave strictly speaking because the beads are not pointing at right angles,  but it lends itself to a great deal of possibilities depending on the size and shape of the beads you use, how long you keep repeating the pattern, and the manner in which you repeat the pattern.   You can also weave a pattern similar  similar to hexagon angle  weave that to my eyes resembles more of a star pattern than regular hexagon weave.  Then again, these are more likely the same  patterns but they look different to me  depending on whether I use oval-shaped beads or round beads.

The two beaded beads below are extremely simple to make.  The one you see here  is made from six  beads.

I have been experimenting with cross weaving which is sometimes referred to as two needle right angle weave. It definitely uses a different set of “head muscles” than single needle RAW, but it’s not that difficult to learn. Below are some examples of beads that I discovered by accident while trying to do something else. My beads are not new discoveries; I have since found other examples of them on the Internet.


This bead is made from nine beads and I have added some seed bead accents.  

The 12 bead beaded cube is the easiest one of all to make.  Here is a good video tute to get you started.

Give these beads a try if you are interested in learning some of the more complex bead cross weaving.

Elizabethan Beads

Years ago, I took a beading class with a woman named Alois Powers called “Elizabethan Beads.”  Powers  had designed some very stunning self-supported beaded beads made up of seed beads and crystals and she was an excellent teacher as I recall.


Here are some pictures of what I made in the class and afterward.







And thus my frenzy for beaded beads was born.  I still have all of my class materials, made some more beads and have worked out some of my own designs which Powers encouraged her students to do.


Obviously, I cannot share any of the patterns.Fortunately the Internet abounds with information and ideas for making these jeweled  treasures.   Sidonia Petki’s channel on YouTube   is a fabulous resource.  Sidonia also sells tutorials on her Etsy Site.

Here is my favorite (so far) Sidonia beading tutorial video.

The Big (Blog Hop) Reveal

It’s time for the 8th Bead Soup Blog Party Reveal! Here is what I made from the beads my parter Marta Grabalowska sent me. Her blogs are and

My bead soup was not my typical color palate and I consider that a good thing! I realized that I had some pink seed beads in my stash that I thought I would never use. They were almost identical to the ones  in the soup. I mixed them with  beige and tan beads of a similar value  and threw in some turquoise  beads to make a bead crochet pattern. I used the remaining beads as embellishment.


The copper clasp holds the rope closed. I beaded around the focal cameo and went for an asymmetrical look. I am very happy with the result. Thank you Marta!!!

Here are some more pictures.

Thank you Lori Anderson for making another great beading experience possible!! You can find a list of all the participants on Lori’s blog.

Jeri’s New Jewels

Not many words this week, just pictures of  new beaded baubles from Jeri Schatz.















    The beauty of these little elements is that you can make a bunch of them in your favorite palette and then combine them with one another or other elements (beaded beads?  lampworked beads?) to make a one of a kind beaded creation.  


And the possibilities for making clasps, closures and focal pieces are unending!

  Jerri  teaches beading and is currently offering classes at the Fashion Institute of Technology  in NYC and The Bead Garden in Havertown, PA.

Crochet Beads

Have you ever tried crocheting around beads?  It’s lots of fun and not difficult,  The beads below are HUGE,  an inch and a half in diameter.  I bought the wooden base beads from American Wood Supply.    Craft Passion has an excellent tutorial that you can alter to fit the size of your beads.





If you’re a visual learner, here’s a video that will give you an idea of the process

Bead Soup Enclosed!


OK, I admit it. I’ve been a little bit frazzled lately. For one thing, my workshop is in chaos following the repair of a pipe in the cement floor. I’m moving old furniture out and new(er) furniture (shelves and table) in and have more plans after that’s done but first we are having some home renovation done which requires major purging (Goodbye Disraeli Gears and 600 other LP’s I haven’t played in 30 years). The only one who seems unaffected by all of this is Plumpton.

So imagine my delight and surprise when I got a little package in the mail with this on it.

A little back story: I participated in Lori Anderson’s 6th Bead Soup Blog Hop this summer and posted prodigiously about my non-linear creative process. I had a blast. I had so much fun that I even filled out a survey that Lori sent around. Me. Filling out a survey. Normally when someone I don’t know (and honestly this sometimes applies to people I know and love) inquires, “Can I ask you a question?” I am tempted to reply (and indeed sometimes do reply) “Yes, but only one and that was it.” I am not the kind of person who responds to surveys. But I was so delighted with the Bead Soup experience that I responded and forgot about it, until yesterday when the package arrived in the mail.

Kalmbach Books, publisher of Lori’s forthcoming book Bead Soup, (Pre order a copy here) selected some beaders from those who answered the survey and paired them with bead stores who advertise in Kalmbach publications for another Bead Soup event. I am delighted that I answered the survey!

I tore open the package and this is what I found

Lots of beady gemstone chips, plus cylinder beads, 3mm beads and a charm all in a warm patinated metal from Your Beading Heart.

I’m not restricted to a particular color pallet and there’s more than enough Bead Soup to get me started.

Some words about my sponsor, Your Beading Heart. Your Beading Heart looks like a wonderful full-service bead store in south western Pennsylvania. They offer classes, room for parties and gatherings and a lot of interesting beads, tools and storage items for sale. And they sell on-line! Since they are 285 miles from me, that’s a good thing. If you are near Irwin PA and want to stop by, go here for directions.

Oh yeah, the due date for our finished projects is October 31 which also happens to be my 25th wedding anniversary. Our work will go up on Kalmbach’s Facebook and Pinterest pages.

Thank you Lori, thank you Kalmbach and thank you Linda Jacobs-Pence, owner of Your Beading Heart for this wonderful surprise.

Maybe I’ll answer more surveys!

Do the Blog Hop

I’m doing something new.  I am participating in my first ever blog party.  A blog party lets bloggers  share their work with one another and discover blogs they might never see otherwise.  But someone has to organize it.  In this case, the intrepid soul  is Lori Anderson  who  blogs at  Prettythings.  This is the sixth blog party she has put together and this time she has partnered nearly four hundred bloggers from around the world.  The plan is that  the partners exchange beads,  create something with the beads they have received and post it on their blogs on the day of the Big Reveal.  There are so may participants that there are three Big Reveal days.   I am in the second reveal group.  This is good because I was always in the third math group and third reading group in grade school and it was hell for my self esteem.  Now I am in group two which is a marked improvement.

My lucky (I hope!) partner  is Kristen Latimer of MJM Jewelry Designs.   I’m guessing that Kristen was probably in the first reading group in the fifth grade,  because unlike me, she has a discernible jewelry making style which is a bit more advanced than my, “Why don’t I put bead caps on whatever you call this thing,  wear it on a wire around my neck and wait for comments?”

The creative process can be an ignominious experience.

A list of all of the bloggers in group two follows.  I am familiar with some of  them and look forward to exploring the sites that are new to me.   Why don’t you check a few of these blogs out too?  If you see anything you like, drop that person  a comment and let me know so I can take a look too?  OHBOY I’m getting excited already!

Adlinah Kamsir, Dream Struck Designs
Adrienn Lukacs, Raszputyin Designs
Agata Grygiel, Cytherea Bijoux
Alenka Obid, Pepita Handmade
Amy Dickerson, Damyjo Designs
Amy Freeland, Copper Diem
Amy Schmidt, Amy’s Treasure
Amy Severino, Amy Beads
Andrea Trank, Heaven Lane Creations
Anke Humpert, Anart Island Studios
Ann Rishell, My Critical Eye
April Grinaway, Brooklyn Bead Goddess
Ashley Bunting, Miss Ashely Kate
Astrid Boyce, Astrid Boyce Beads
B.R. Kuhlman, Mixed Mayhem Studios
Barbe Saint John, Saints and Sinners
Beata Benkone Meggyesi, Beahobbi
Brenda Sigafoos, Sunshine’s Creations
 Bryna Lumb, Bryna’s Bead Box
Carmen Lau, Little Maketto
Carrie Tahquechi, Carrie T
Cate van Alphen, Fulgorine
Cathy Khoury, Touch Jewelry
Christina Stofmeel, Feng Beads
 Collette Collins, Fire Fly Myst Artisan Jewelry
Courtney Breul, Beads by Breul
Crystal Thain, Here Bead Dragons
Cynthia Abner, Created Treasures
Debbie Phenes, Deb Joy Sing
Dhea Powers, Java Bead
Diana Welte, Lilyweeds
Dita Basu, alankarshilpa
Dorota Zeranska, gdymamczas
Elisabeth Auld, Beads For Busy Gals
Ema Kilroy, Ema K Designs
Eva Sherman, Eva Sherman Designs
Evie and Beth McCord, EB Bead and Metal Works
Francy Inman, Francy’s Studio
Ginger Bishop, lilmummy likes…
Giorgia Rossini, Jo in Wonderland
Hajer Waheed, My Beaded World
Ine Vande Cappelle, Jewels by Ine
Iveth Caruso, Creative Atelier
Jackie Ryan, Kydo Jewellery
Jeannie Dukic, Jeannie’s Blog
Jelveh Jaferian, Jelveh Designs
Jenna Tomalka, Twin Birch Studio
Jenni Connolly, Jenni’s Beads
Jennifer Van Horn, Jennifers Jewels and Junk
Jo-Ann Woolverton, It’s a Beadiful Creation
Johanna Rhodes-Nash, Fire Phoenix Creations
 Joyce Blair, Bent Wire West Coast
JuLee Wolfe, The Polymer Penguin
Karen Vincent, Swallow Tail Jewellery
Karin Slaton, Backstory Beads
Kim Dworak, CianciBlue
Kris Lanae Binsfeld, Cherish Designs by Kris Lanae
Kristen Latimer, MJM Jewelry Designs
Kumi Fisher, Malie Kai Designs
Kym Hunter, Kym Hunter Designs
Laurie Lalonde, HourGlass Studio
Lennis Carrier, Windbent
Leslie Wayment, AA Beads & More
Linda Murphy, Bonita Bead
Lisa Johnson, Whimsey Wonders
Lisa Sittniewski, Love, Yesterdays
Lola Surwillo, Bead Lola Bead
Lorelei Eurto, Lorelei’s Blog
Lori Bowring Michaud, Artfully Ornamental
Lori Finney, Using My Beads
Maria Horvath, Horimarika Beads
Marian Hertzog, M’s Place
 Mary Ellen Parker, BeeTree by m.e.
MaryLou Holvenstot, time2cre8
Martha Aleo, Ornamento
 Maybeline Tay, The Jewelry Larder
Megan Collins, Churchy & Her Sailor
Melissa Meman, Art. Life. Love.
Melissa Mesara, One-Eared Pig Beads
Michelle Escano-Caballero, The Cabby Crafter
Paige Maxim, Paige Maxim Designs
Pam Farren, re-maker
Patricia Handschuh, The Color of Dreams
Patty Miller, CabariBeads
Penney Klapoth, Faerie Acres
Regina Santerre, Regina’s Writings
Rhea Freitag, starrgazer creates
Toltec Jewels, Jewel School Friends
Rochelle Brisson, A Creative Chelle
Saari Margareta, Mags-koruja
Sabine Dittrich, PerlenDschungel
Sandra McGriff, Creative Chaos
Sandra Neights, Petalo Azul
Sandra Young, It’s a Bead Life!
Sara Oehler, SoftFlex Girl
Sarah Goode, Pookledo
Saturday Sequins, Saturday Sequins
Shanti Johnson, Sunshine Bliss
Shari Replogle, Plays With Paper
Sonya Stille, Dreamin’ of Beads
Stefanie Teufel, Stefanies Sammelsurium
Tammie Everly, TTE Designs
Tania Spivey, Moobie Grace Designs
Terri Gauthier, Blooming Ideas
Therese Frank, Therese’s Treasures
Tina Holden, Polymer Clay Bytes!
Tracey Nanstad, A Beadiful Mess
Valerie Norton, Hot Art

Jeri and Olivia Play with Beads

My friend Olivia came to visit and I took her to see my friend Jeri  (AKA Beading Yoda)  and Jeri’s wonderful beading studio chock full of seed beads, trims, embellishments,  findings and scores of new designs in progress.

Remember, it all starts with seed beads but can you imagine so many different designs and looks and patterns?  Olivia had a great time trying on all the bracelets.

There are some beaded beads mixed in here.  The bead base is made of  clear Lucite.  The finished beads look gorgeous.

Some unfinished pieces, tests and experiments,

I was beaded out at the end of the day.  Almost.  Who can ever have too many beads?

Good news

I have an earring project in

check it out!

I also signed up to participate in Lori Anderson’s 6th Bead Soup Blog Party.

Next week: a visit to Olivia’s studio.

Beaded Beads New Work and Old Favorites

Anyone who knows me well knows that when I get obsessed with something crafty,  I sleep, eat and dream it until I get it out of my system.    I have gone through beaded bead obsessions before and am experiencing my latest one.  The beads I am making now are an unplanned, free form peyote and I am trying four, three, two drop and standard versions as I stitch my way around the beads.  I am using Japanese beads: Delicas, Miyuki 11/0 seed beads and some size 15/0, and some old round Japanese seed beads my friend Dorothy gave me a few years ago.     I am finding inspiration in the work of  Gustav Klimt.

New Work

The round  bead on the left is about 25mm

 Older Work

Beaded Beads

triple drop peyote

Double Peyote Bracelet Embellished Detail 4

example of beaded bead used in closure

Beaded Bead Sampler necklace

Sampler using peyote, netting, right angle weave and brick stitch.  The spacers are Nikia Angel’s Sparkley Wheels.

A great source of wooden  beads, ovals and rounds,  size small to huge is  Craftparts.  Finally, check out  Amy Karash fine bead work  I have adored her work for years.

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