I met Amy Loh-Kupser at a local bead store the same summer I worked on Reveille. She had some gorgeous work displayed, and was selling the corresponding pattern books and kits. I fell in love with the Chinese Thimble-Catcher. It’s basically a peyote tube with a bottom and a top that can come on and off, and it has the Chinese character for Happiness on it. I was determined to make all of my Christmas gifts that year, and this was perfect for my sister. She loved it, and I didn’t have to count the pattern!
Amy flipped through the book, talking about the other 11 patterns, and I noticed some graphs in the back. The patterns are on each page, so I asked her what they were for. She told me you cut them out and tape them to a form so you don’t have to count the pattern! You just see what color you need next and bead it!
3 Steps for No Pattern-Count Peyote
- Make a Pattern. Cut out your pattern from her book, or make your own using beading software (or excel if you’re really good with the program) and scale it down to actual size. The pattern beads don’t have to be the correct width (you can move or piece forward on the tube), but they do need to be the correct height. Then tape the ends together so the edges line up.
- Make a form. To make my form, I cut a toilet paper roll in half. For larger projects like amulet bags, you can make your form from an empty 3 liter bottle. Then push your form through the paper tube.
- Bead it. String the first 2 rows of peyote, tie in a circle, and slip it on the form. (Exactly like starting a beaded pen.) Line it up so you can see row 3 on the pattern. Look at the pattern to see what color bead you need to add next. Add the bead, and when you complete your stitch, it will cover up the bead shown on the pattern. Then just keep following the pattern on the form, and push you work up to match the row you are working on.
I strongly recommend using cylinder beads/Delicas for this type of project. Amy also says that a pattern normally taking 40 hours may only take 10-15 hours! I’m a more advanced beader than when I completed this project, so I may be ready to take on the Bluebell pattern.
What do you think? Have you tried this, or plan to give it a try? Please share with us in the comments!