July 2, 2012

My long weekend project a Knitted Beaded Cuff

I was looking for a small project to try this weekend and I came across a beaded cuff that someone had made. I used to knit these with wire years and years ago and sold a few but it's now become very popular. I guess I was just way ahead of my time. I started playing with some beads and thread at work on my lunch break, loading up the thread with beads and then crocheting it. I found the needle too small for the work and didn't really like the effect. A friend stopped by to see what I was doing in my little crafty corner and wanted me to do one for her in oranges.
I stopped by the bead store on my way home and decided to knit it this time. My progress photos follow with a little description.

My supplies, a variety of beads, large hole beading needle, embroidery floss and size 0 knitting needles. (mine are a little overworked... not too straight are they?) I thread the beads onto the floss in a somewhat random pattern. You need to have about 45 inches of beads strung before you begin knitting. This is tedious to say the least.

Then I cast on 10 stitches. I wanted a wider cuff but you can use as many as you like. I used the pearl stitch only. This causes all the beads to stay on one side. I pearl three or four rows before I add the beads.
I begin sliding beads on every pearl stitch for the next row, sometimes in twos or threes. The bigger beads just one per stitch. Push them up against the work so you don't have them wandering around to the back of the piece. The pattern is basically pearl one row with beads, then pearl the next without beads.

You can see I'm making some progress. The above pictures show the work from and back as I progress.

As I moved further along, I wrapped the string of beads and thread around a paper towel tube to keep this manageable. I noticed I was running out of floss and thought my bead supply wouldn't be enough to finish. So I decided to transfer the beads to a new piece of floss and add some more beads.
I use a long big hole beading needle for this. I threaded the old end of the floss through the needle and the new piece of floss on the other end of the needle. Then I started transferring beads to the new thread. I also added a few more beads.

Transferring the beads to the new floss string along the beading needle.

Once that was done, I removed the beading needle and started the next new row with my new floss string.
When the cuff reached five inches I ended with three rows with no beads and tied off.
I sewed on the clasp and wove the loose ends in.
and voila!

 If my friend doesn't like it I'll keep this beauty for myself!!

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