How To Start Beadwork on Fabric As A Beginner

Beads have been around for a very long time. In fact, some people believe that they date back to the Stone Age. Beads come in many different shapes and sizes (round, faceted, navette). They also come in different colors and textures (glass beads are shiny; polymer clay beads may have glitter or other textures applied to them).

Beads are used in different ways to make many things from jewelry to art. Beads add more beauty to the item when they are put in the right manner. Nowadays beads are used to make jewelry pieces, to add charm to art and decor items, to add more appeal to clothes, or for other purposes.

If you're a beginner and don't know where to start, you should read carefully. First of all, you'll have to collect everything that you need to complete the project. The list of required items is as below:

1. Fabric: As a beginner, you shouldn't start working on your top, t-shirt, or any dress. Try learning on a plain cloth that is of no use. This is because if you make any mistake, it won't be hard to discard the cloth. Do not try to start beading on thick or winter fabric as it will be difficult for you as a novice.

2. Beads: Now this is the most essential part of your project. This is because you'll have to choose a pair of the right beads for the design you're working on. This is where you'll need to put your creativity on display. Just imagine, what colors would look good together? You'll have to buy a pair of beads whose individual colors you like and then pair them up with another bead that has a different color and see how they complement each other.

3. Needle: After you bring home the beads, you'll also need a pair of needles to start beading your fabric. A needle can be long or short. You shouldn't choose a very long one as this will make it hard for you to stitch your beadwork. Don't worry about the size of the needle as it doesn't matter at all in the beginning. Begin with smaller ones until you get used to them and then upgrade to bigger ones later on.

4. Thread: The next thing that is needed for beading on fabric is thread. The best type of thread is a fine thread. This is because the beads you buy will take a lot of space and it will be too much for you if they are made of thicker thread. So, when buying nylon jewelery thread cord make sure that they are fine threads.

5. Embroidery hoop: As a beginner, it will be difficult for you to hold a piece of fabric firmly in your hands for an extended period of time. So, you should get a hoop to hold the fabric. This will help you stitch beads onto the fabric more easily.

6. Scissors: This is just a minor thing that can be ignored if you're not going to cut off the excess thread during your stitching process.

Step-By-Step Guide To Bead Fabric

1. Start by threading a needle with sewing thread.

2. Stick the needle into the fabric, 1/4 inch from any seam on one side of the fabric only. Leave about 4-5 inches of thread hanging free below your needle and then pull it through so that there is now a small loop around the fabric by your needle. Pull it tight, but don't pull too hard or you will distort the fabric.

3. From the underside of the fabric, take a rocaille or seed bead which will act as your first stitch. (You don't have to use a bead for this first stitch, but you will find that it will make things a lot easier). An alternative to using beads is that you could use pieces of nylon thread from the sewing kit in long lengths. But be aware you will need to cut these off afterward and sew them onto another piece of fabric!

4. With the needle still in place, bend a loop around it near the top of your work. This is your repositioning stitch (it will look like a large "k" rather than an "o").

5. Now pull this new loop through the bead on top of your needle. You are now going to pull very tightly, so be careful not to damage the fabric.

6. A few turns of the hand on the needle and you will have pulled enough thread through that your rocaille is now in two places. The thread is tight but not overly tight.

7. Now take your second bead and slide it under the first bead, but don't twist it with the needle; just try to move it out to the side a little bit with your fingers so that they are both clearly visible.

8. Now take the needle out from the fabric and stick it back in next to your second bead. Pull a loop of thread through this new bead like before.

9. Continue by taking your third bead and placing it under the second bead, etc., until you have reached a length that you like. Add more beads for a wider band of stitching, take out some beads if you want something thinner.

10. To finish, simply take each bead in turn and slide it up to where the needle is, but don't twist it or anything. Pull a loop of thread through each bead until you're back to your starting position again.

11. Sticking your needle through all these beads should be quite easy now as you've got a good solid "path" to follow. Once you've finished this, it's just a matter of trimming the thread ends as neatly as you can.

12. The stitches should be fairly straight and uniform in width, but if they are not, don't worry about it: if it looks right to you, that's fine.

13. Now take your needle and thread and tie a knot on both ends (this will prevent them from unraveling). Your beadwork is now finished, but you can add a border if you like.

If you want to start a beading business in future, you should start learning ways to work on fabric now. For that you’ll need various beads and other accessories and you can get them from one stop shop i.e. Dream Of Stones. You can visit our website to see what we’ve in stock and you can send us a message at


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