By Janice Parsons
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Using the spiral knot (also known as ?Chinese ladder?), this project teaches how to add beads to macramé. Begin by watching our short video describing the spiral knot technique (see below). Then select a button, an array of delicious beads and keep your glue and thread burner handy. This design would also lend itself to a necklace or pair of tassel earrings to match or wear on their own. The possibilities are endless!
Project Level: Intermediate Time to Complete: "Saturday" Project
- 1 spool Micro C-Lon (I used Khaki but you can use any color of your choice)
- Citrine, Peridot, Pyrite and Amethyst briolettes (You can use a combination of any stones with small holes. Beads with large holes don?t work well on the tassel portion of the bracelet)
- 1 button (It's best to use one with a shank)
For a double strand bracelet with a tassel, cut 4 lengths of cord 70 inches each. String all four through the button shank to the halfway point (35 inches). Gather them together and make an overhand knot.Gently pull on each cord to tighten the knot down evenly. Secure the middle strands and button with binder clips to opposite ends of the board.
Start by doing a section of spiral knots before adding your first bead. You want your first bead to clear the button so they do not rub against each other.
Beads are added to the outer strand before you start the knot. Though the threads switch places due to spiraling, add your bead on the same side each time. Make several knots before adding your next bead.
As a design element, you may want to have sections of just spiral knots. Since this macramé stitch is meant to turn, your bead will not “sit” in the same place. They are going to want to sprial as well!
About an inch short of your finished length, macramé about 2 inches of knots to create a loop that will fit your button through once you have completed the loop. Measure as you go to ensure the button will clear the knotted loop.
With your two outer threads, bring the button loop back to where it started and make a square knot around itself: right over left, left over right.
Pull it tight, add a drop of glue on the square knot and now you are ready to begin your second strand. Please do not cut any of your threads.
When starting your second strand, select the two longest strands to be your outer macramé threads. Do several spiral knots with them around your inner threads before adding your first bead. Continue knotting and beading until you reach the button for a second time.
Add a few spiral knots after your last bead so your beads will clear the button. String only your center threads through the button shank. Leave out your two macramé threads.
Bring your two macramé threads under and around the center cords and make a square knot below the shank of the button. Add a drop of glue on the square knot. Do not cut any of your threads.
Now that your two strand bracelet is complete, you are ready to create a cascading tassel of gems. Make about seven spiral knots to clear the button. Tie another square knot with your two outer macramé threads, add a drop of glue and separate all your threads.
Begin with any strand and string on a gem one at a time and knot below it using an overhand knot. If you need a refresher on this style of knotting, click here for Cascade Earrings. At the end of each thread, use your thread burner or scissors to cut the tails. It is also a good idea to add a drop of glue to the knot below the bottom bead on each strand. Mission complete!