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Using the Wave Stitch for Great Bracelets

Updated on July 29, 2008

There is an infinite number of great bracelet designs that you can make. The wave stitch is one that makes for a great option and your bead choices can create a wide range of great looks for simple bracelets that can be fun, beautiful, or even elegant.

You Will Need

  • Nylon Coated Beading Wire
  • Crimp Beads or Tubes
  • A Clasp of your choice (If you need help choosing a clasp then see Choosing the Perfect Clasp for Your Bracelet).

  • Glue (I recommend Bead Fix)
  • Beads-small beads and large round beads (see below for more information and ideas)
  • Scissors
  • Crimp Pliers

How To

The wave stitch is easy to work, but it is always good to have some step-by-step directions.

  1. Cut two strands of wire about three times the length of the finished piece.

  2. Fold the end over so that there is about 1.5-2 inches of wire on one side and the rest on the other.

  3. Add one half of your clasp so that it rests on the fold in the wire.

  4. Add your crimp bead to both pairs of wire and press tight to the clasp. Crimp it with the crimp pliers.
  5. To wire number one add 1 large round bead.
  6. To the second wire add small beads. Your goal is to add enough beads to circle half way around the large round bead.
  7. Add a small bead to both wires.

  8. Add a large bead to wire number one (the same wire as the first bead was added to but it will be on the other side).

  9. Add the same number of small beads to the second wire.

  10. Add a small bead to both wires.

  11. Continue on. Every now and again push the small beads down tight. They will look like they are waving their way around the larger beads.

  12. When you have a piece that is the length you want your bracelet you will want to add a crimp bead to both wires and then the other half of your clasp.

  13. Fold the wire back over and run it back through the crimp bead and a few other beads.

  14. Finish by crimping the crimp bead.

  15. Then trim off all the wires and add a drop of glue to each crimp bead for added security.

This one is made with glass pearls (more uniform then the real deal), glass seed beads, and bi-cone crystals (3mm). It gives it a slightly different look!
This one is made with glass pearls (more uniform then the real deal), glass seed beads, and bi-cone crystals (3mm). It gives it a slightly different look!

Bead Choices

The Large Beads-The large beads in the pattern should be 6-12mm though 8mm is a great size. They should be round but can be fasceted without any problems. This stitch was suggested for glass and acrylic pearls (real ones tend not to be uniform enough) however they work well with glass beads, acrylic beads, gemstone beads, and even round wooden beads.

The Small Beads-Seed beads work very well for this project as they wrap their way around the larger beads very easily. Other choices can be round beads up to about 4mm (which should only be used with larger round beads 10mm and up). You can also use e-beads, small gemstone beads, small pearls (glass, acrylic, or real), and glass or acrylic beads. If you are careful you can use different shapes as well such as heishi, roundelle, or even bi-cone (though this is hard to get the right look, but if you use one bi-cone bead or crystal at the half way point around each side of the large beads with seed beads as your other beads you get a great look).

Colors, Textures, and Materials-Your color, texture, and material choices make for completely different looking pieces. Changing one of these can make for a whole new look and give your piece an added air. You can choose materials, textures, or colors for a fun look, a beautiful look, or even an elegant look. Have fun mixing and matching beads.

Similar Options

This is a form of weaving and can be done with other beads to obtain different looks. Only with the larger and smaller beads on each side will you get the wave. However, you can use this same idea to make two stranded bracelets with various looks and beads by adding beads to each strand and then some to both strands together and then seperating them out again. There are a lot of other options that are similar to the wave stitch for a variety of great looks. Making Multi-Strand Bracelets will give you a great place to get started!

These wonderful bracelets can be made in a wide range of looks. They can add to your jewelry collection or you can give them as gifts. With a little work you could even come up with great pieces to sell. Your imagination, a little practice, and a little bit of work will soon have you making great wave stitch bracelets.


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  • C.S.Alexis profile image

    C.S.Alexis 8 years ago from NW Indiana

    This is a nice technique, thanks for demonstrating the application. Thumbs up.