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Beaded Beadwoven Leaves: Stand Alone Projects, As Components, and Cuff Designs

Updated on July 7, 2012
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Rose is a full-time freelance writer who frequently writes about education, special education, DIY projects, food, Milwaukee, and more.

Golden Leaves
Golden Leaves | Source

One of my bead fascinations the last couple years has been leaves. I have mostly been focused on Czech glass leaf beads. However, I enjoy browsing and getting inspiration from all sorts of different beaded leaves. While beaded leaves may seem like a very specific concept that only has a few uses, there are many different options for beaded leaves. This includes using them as stand alone projects, as components for larger projects, or in graphed designs for cuffs.

As you read this hub and absorb the different examples keep a couple different things in mind. First, consider flat versus curved leaves. Depending on the types of beads that you use, many patterns can be converted to one or the other fairly easily. Using different leaf textures in a single project can create a variety that will portray a natural leafy array. Second, consider realistic versus abstract leaf designs. Think about your own preferences and what will be appropriate for different kinds of projects.

Please note that all of the patterns included in this hub require a basic knowledge of beadweaving skills. If you are new to beadweaving, check out these free basic tutorials. I know that many of the examples and projects here seem complex, but once you get a few stitches under your belt, you'll be ready to start working on leaves. Happy beading!

Stand Alone Projects

Single beaded leaves make beautiful pieces of jewelry all on their own. Typically I turn my leaves into earrings, but they also work well as pendants. Consider attaching one to a pin back to make a brooch, attaching a loop and large split ring for a keychain, or turning one into a zipper pull. You can also combine several leaves for a simple bracelet or necklace without a lot of other embellishments. Have fun experimenting with different colors and beads.

Beaded Dangle Earrings - Lime Green Leaves: I like to combined coordinating shades of delicas and Czech seed beads to make curved leaves for earrings.
Beaded Dangle Earrings - Lime Green Leaves: I like to combined coordinating shades of delicas and Czech seed beads to make curved leaves for earrings. | Source
Petite Leaf Beadwoven Peyote Earrings: Use a contrasting color to create veins for your leaves.
Petite Leaf Beadwoven Peyote Earrings: Use a contrasting color to create veins for your leaves. | Source
Bronze Leaf Necklace on Beaded Rope
Bronze Leaf Necklace on Beaded Rope | Source

As Components

Beaded leaves can be used as components for any number of larger pieces. Use a few with a beaded flower or pair them with glass beads. You can make beaded leaves in any size so consider what will work best for the piece that you are designing. Again, consider different colors and beads. The color palette that you choose can significantly alter a design. The beads that you choose will affect the texture and overall appearance of the leaves.

Beaded Dangle Earrings - Radishes: I created tiny leaves as part of a pair of custom radish earrings.  They are a beaded version of the radish earrings that Luna Lovegood wears in the Harry Potter movies.
Beaded Dangle Earrings - Radishes: I created tiny leaves as part of a pair of custom radish earrings. They are a beaded version of the radish earrings that Luna Lovegood wears in the Harry Potter movies. | Source
Tuscan Sunflower Beadwoven Collar: Callie used beaded leaves as components in this stunning sunflower necklace.
Tuscan Sunflower Beadwoven Collar: Callie used beaded leaves as components in this stunning sunflower necklace. | Source
Leafing Out: Ginny also used beaded leaves to make a necklace.  I love the mix of finishes and shades for the green leaves and the natural tree structure of the necklace.
Leafing Out: Ginny also used beaded leaves to make a necklace. I love the mix of finishes and shades for the green leaves and the natural tree structure of the necklace. | Source
Made to Order: Beadwoven "Russian Leaves" Necklace: Changing the colors in this piece would significantly change feel of these piece.  Consider colors that portray different seasons.
Made to Order: Beadwoven "Russian Leaves" Necklace: Changing the colors in this piece would significantly change feel of these piece. Consider colors that portray different seasons. | Source

Cuff Designs

There are a number of beaded cuff designs out there that included leaves or leafy designs. Some also include flowers and/or natural elements while others solely feature leaves. The most popular stitch for cuffs with leaf designs is peyote. I have found a few patterns out there that use square stitch, which means that they can be converted to a loom. Many leaf patterns are designed in even count peyote, making them suitable for relatively new beadweavers.

If you are interested in creating your own leaf cuff designs, consider purchasing bead software such as BeadTool. It is tedious to graph intricate patterns on paper. Please note that if you are interested in selling your patterns, please test drive them first. It is easy to create beautiful patterns on graphs, but they may not all translate well with beads. Do at least one test run first.

Yellow Windowleaf - Peyote Beadwoven Bracelet / Cuff
Yellow Windowleaf - Peyote Beadwoven Bracelet / Cuff | Source
Ophelia - Wide Peyote Beaded Cuff Bracelet
Ophelia - Wide Peyote Beaded Cuff Bracelet | Source
Leaves of Paisley
Leaves of Paisley | Source

Twining Leaves - Green and Gold Beadwoven Bracelet

Source

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    • Seeker7 profile image

      Helen Murphy Howell 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland

      Fascinating hub and what beautiful craft work!! In particular I loved the necklaces and the bracelets - the pattern, textures and colours are stunning and something to suit every taste. Many thanks for sharing.

    • Ddraigcoch profile image

      Emma 5 years ago from UK

      Stunning. I adore all these designs. Fabulous hub on a subject I adore.

    • randomcreative profile image
      Author

      Rose Clearfield 5 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      Thank you so much Seeker and Ddraig!

    • carriethomson profile image

      carriethomson 5 years ago from United Kingdom

      once again amazing beadwork, the Russian Leaves Necklace is awesome!

      carrie

    • randomcreative profile image
      Author

      Rose Clearfield 5 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      Thanks! I think so, too!

    • prasetio30 profile image

      prasetio30 5 years ago from malang-indonesia

      This was so beautiful. You always find the most creative jewelry design for your hub. Awesome, including this one. Well done, my friend. Rated up! ~prasetio

    • randomcreative profile image
      Author

      Rose Clearfield 5 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      Thank you so much Prasetio!

    • JesadaB profile image

      JesadaB 5 years ago from Home!

      Thanks for all the great jewelry ideas, great hub voted up and useful!

    • randomcreative profile image
      Author

      Rose Clearfield 5 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      You're welcome and thank you in return!

    • UniqueVanities profile image

      Heather 5 years ago from Ohio

      Okay, sister. That "leafing out" piece just hurt my soul a little!! Seems like something I need in my collection!! Thinking this is WAY above my skill level though... Any idea where I could find something like this?

    • randomcreative profile image
      Author

      Rose Clearfield 5 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      That particular piece is available here:

      http://www.etsy.com/listing/71214749/leafing-out

    • K H Camp profile image

      K H Camp 5 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      Beautiful!

    • randomcreative profile image
      Author

      Rose Clearfield 5 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      Thank you!

    • carrierichard profile image

      carrierichard 5 years ago from California, USA

      The designs look stunning and innovative

    • lpanfil profile image

      lpanfil 5 years ago from Cleveland, Ohio

      Beautiful. I would so make these if I hadn’t promised myself to not add any more crafting projects to my plate!

    • randomcreative profile image
      Author

      Rose Clearfield 5 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      Thanks Carrie!

      I know how it goes, lpanfil. :) I have to limit my creative projects, too!

    • Dolores Monet profile image

      Dolores Monet 5 years ago from East Coast, United States

      Whoo - some of these look really hard to make! And the Russian leaves are so gorgeous! I saw some wired leaves in a shop, they were not jewelry, but beaded long leaves, like willow leaves, about 8 inches long, combined in a vase, very cool.

    • Mardi profile image

      Mardi 5 years ago from Western Canada and Texas

      The photos are stunning. I am in awe of people that can make beautiful things! Maybe one day I will find the time to try this but mine will definitely not look this terrific.

      Great Hub and thanks.

    • randomcreative profile image
      Author

      Rose Clearfield 5 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      Thanks for commenting Dolores and Mardi!

      Dolores, wire beaded leaves are beautiful, too!

      Mardi, with time, patience, and good eyesight, anyone can learn to do this type of beadwork.

    • lemonkerdz profile image

      lemonkerdz 4 years ago from TRUJILLO, PERU

      the cuffs are beautiful. great photos and well executed hub. thanks a lot

    • randomcreative profile image
      Author

      Rose Clearfield 4 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      Thanks so much, lemonkerdz!

    • Jacobb9205 profile image

      Jacob Barnard 2 years ago from Gloucestershire

      Looks awesome! Voted up!

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