Lampwork Etc.

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-   -   Ladder Stitch and Braided Bracelet with Button (or Lampwork)Closure (

HannahRachel 2012-12-24 5:30pm

Ladder Stitch and Braided Bracelet with Button (or Lampwork)Closure
I've been working on a thicker version of the ladder stitch bracelet from this thread:
This tutorial should explain how to do a piece with multiple rows as well as adding a braid option.

**Work Surface


**C-Lon Macrame Cord
(I get it from caravan beads here: )

** For a double wrap bracelet, 3 pieces, 1 1/2 yards long each 1mm leather (available from your local bead store)

** 5 grams size 8/0 seed beads (also available from Caravan Beads)

** 20 grams 3.5 cube beads. The hole needs to be 1mm so it slides over the leather. This would also look GREAT with tiny spacer beads.

** Button or Lampwork glass bead

**Twisted Wire Needles

**Some glue - I suggest watch glue.

Alrighty, ready to get started? Cut the three pieces of leather and find the approximate middle point on them. We'll be starting by making the buttonhole loop, so the important part of this is that we start about 1/2" off center and that we make sure the loop is big enough for your button or bead.

Use the c-lon to bundle them together. Wrap them together, tie off and then go ahead and start weaving (over one, under one, over one and around the bundle) to flatten your pieces. I've got them pinned down to my work surface.

Using the same technique from the previous thread (here), weave the beads between the leather "weft". Remember to always go through the beads as you pass them with the needle, otherwise you'll have unsightly c-lon loops. If you were to use the same size beads, this would allow you to do multirow bracelets. Since I'm trying to make a loop, however, the outer row is bigger beads than the inner row (I've used 8/0 seed beads in the inner row and cubes on the outer row).

Since the loop wasn't curving fast enough, I had to add increases in the outer row. When I come back, I'll show you how to do this...

HannahRachel 2012-12-24 6:13pm

Okay, so increasing one side is actually a royal pain in the a$$ because you have to make sure you do it evenly and it has to match your bracelet closure (button or bead) when you are finished. I had to take mine out twice before it worked out. But my final increase was done every THIRD cube bead. A better way to do this would be just to make sure your outer bead is significantly larger than the inner bead so the curve naturally happens.

As a side note, this does not match the increases in the photos, but every THIRD bead worked for a 3/4 inch button.

To work an increase, add the cube (outside/larger) bead and then instead of going directly to the inner bead double back and add another cube/larger bead. On the next pass, you'll add both the outer and inner beads as normal.

Once your buttonhole is complete, you'll want to wrap a shank on it. Put a spot of glue on the shank to keep it all together.

Now... You can either go ahead and use the same technique to spread your 6 strands out and weave between them with the ladder stitch technique (this makes a wide, really wonderful bracelet) shown above... You need to make certain that all your beads have approximately the same width, otherwise the bracelet will undulate, which actually can give you another completely different design idea.

....or you can braid.

I've decided to braid because after doing the ladder stitch three times for that buttonhole I was totally done with the whole idea. I have to tell you here that the only previous ladder stitch bracelet I managed to finish was the one I made for the previous tutorial before I got totally bored.

We're going to use a six-strand braid, which is why I had you cut so much leather. You'll see below that I also covered the shank with a little bit of peyote stitch since I can't leave well enough alone and I'd done a messy job wrapping that shank. We're going to use a six-strand flat braid here.

Flatten out your six strands.

Here's how this works WITHOUT beads.
1 * From the right, you'll take the first strand (I'll call this the working cord), go under the second strand and over the third strand.
2 * From the left you'll take the first strand, go over the second strand, under the third strand and over the fourth strand (which was the working cord from the other side).

Repeat steps 1 & 2.

Here's a website you can check to see this in a little more detail (without beads). This is actually the website on which I learned to do this particular flat braid.

HannahRachel 2012-12-24 6:29pm

Here's how this works WITH beads.
I've used cube beads here, but I'll bet this would be great with lampwork spacers. Remember, you just have to make them big enough to go over a 1mm leather code. I'm not sure what size mandrel this is.

1* From the right, you'll take the first strand (I'll call this the working cord), go under the second strand, add a bead, and over the third strand.
2* From the left you'll take the first strand, go over the second strand, under the third strand, add a bead, and over the fourth strand (which was the working cord from the other side).

Repeat steps 1 & 2.

The finished beadwork will appear to have a herringbone pattern.

Braid to the end of your bracelet. Try to braid as tightly as possible, and stretch the leather a little bit as you go. You'll see the tension even out as you continue to work the braid.

At the end, you can either knot the button/bead directly onto the leather or you can add a piece of c-lon and make a shank that attaches to the button/bead. That's what I did because my Czech button has a tiny metal shank in the back that only went over a single piece of leather.

Here's a photo of the finished piece again - enjoy!

Okay, now lets see your versions!

mewkittie 2012-12-24 7:23pm

Thanks Hannah!! It's totally cute!! Love the colored leather that you used. I'll have to get my supplies together - right after my sister leaves so I can start one.

BTW, I see you're using a stiff needle. Do you tie the C-Lon on with another piece of thread?

KJJames 2012-12-24 7:24pm

Thank You Hannah! This is gorgeous! I cannot wait to try it! I so appreciate your generosity!

zen-mom 2012-12-24 8:13pm

Woot! Thank you Hannah!

All of my stuff is in the studio, but hopefully I can get something started on Wednesday :)

Janetlee 2012-12-24 9:04pm

Thank You Hannah!!!
Merry Christmas!!

HannahRachel 2012-12-24 9:26pm


Originally Posted by mewkittie (Post 4195981)
BTW, I see you're using a stiff needle. Do you tie the C-Lon on with another piece of thread?

Darn it, you weren't supposed to notice that. :)

I suggest using a large eye needle or a twisted wire needle for this project, but since I only had a little (short) beading needle and couldn't get the c-lon through it (and wanted to get the project up for you without another run to the bead store), I attached them together with a piece of Fireline.

Crazy Woman 2012-12-25 6:31am

Hannah ~ You are awesome, cute, talented and so sharing. Thanks again for another fantastic tutorial. See you at RMBS and roomie at B&B

rosebud101 2012-12-25 8:35am

Hannah, Love this!!! Thank you for your generosity in sharing!!!

pittypat 2012-12-25 8:37am

HannahRachel, you are a real gem!!! The bracelet is superlicious!!! Thanks so much for your sharing self...can't wait to start this one, and I think I have all I need to begin.

You are a precious dollbaby.

Denielle 2012-12-25 10:01am

Thanks Hannah!

donia 2012-12-26 8:57am

Hannah, ThAnK YoU for yet again sharing your time and talent to provide us with another awesome tutorial. Looking forward to seeing everyone share their pics using this one. Your directions and pics are so easy to understand that I'm sure we'll have even more LE peeps trying this one. ;-)

fusionillusionartglass 2012-12-26 9:24am

Thank you Hannah! Love it and will be making it this week!

HannahRachel 2012-12-27 4:54pm

Thanks for the kind words everyone!

For those of you who want the cube beads and are having trouble finding them, you can get them from my friend Betcey.

You'll want the larger ones so they fit on the leather.

tiptrinket 2012-12-28 10:58am

This is gorgeous! Thank you Hannah!

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