Thursday, 15 November 2012

Beaded Butterfly

This is Nina Libbin's Beaded Butterfly Bookmark.  I did it a couple of weeks ago but never got around to making a blogpost about it.  I was attracted to this pattern when I saw it and fancied giving it a try but I'm still undecided about the bead work...  I find that, for me, I loose all rhythm when I work with beads.  You have to stop after nearly every stitch in this pattern to slide the beads along.  And for a small butterfly, there are still 244 beads!

Sadly, I'm a bit disappointed with the look of the beads and thread (size 80 by DMC).  The beads look prettier in real life - they are actually all different shades of copper but it's not coming through on the photo.  Anyway, altogether not really my colours but there you have it.

I'm starting to wonder if I'm a glutton for punishment though...  every time I conclude I don't really like tatting with a lot of beads and still, every once in a while, there is a pattern I just have to try!

I have not decided what sort of finish to give on the end of the tail...
so I'm not showing it you!

And another, small butterfly to conclude this post:

This is adapted from Handy Hands' Butterfly, the one they use to show how their thread colours work up and which is on the back of shuttle packets (I kept the shape but just changed the stitch count a bit).  I made it to use up a bit of thread that was left on a shuttle and which was too nice to waste!  The thread is Jess's Chilled Mess and I was just happy at how the colour changes happened (quite by accident!) symmetrically.  Nice little butterfly, really quick to make.  It went on a card I gave away this afternoon.

Still working on the hanky edging from the previous post.  I slowed down a bit because I'm not sure which hanky to use so I have to wait before getting to the next corner as I don't know what size I'll need!  I may have to compromise as I don't think I'll find something to match the thread as well as I would have liked...  could be it will have to be white...  though I'm sure I had a turquoise hanky somewhere... but then even if I find it, it's likely the shade of blue won't be quite right... oh well!

Best wishes,


  1. Great butterfly bookmark!! Looks like lots of patience!!! :)
    And you little butterfly is sweet!! :)

  2. Wow, that's an amazing amount of beads- looks well worth the effort to me.

  3. That is an astounding piece of work!

    You know I love working with beads, but I would never have the heart to tackle that one... Good for you. It is lovely and I like it in that beautiful pinky peach colour a lot.
    Fox : )

  4. The butterfly looks good, and better in real person I'm sure!

    As for the number of beads going into it, eh, thank you but it's not for me. I have a faint heart for beads.

    1. I don't blame you for that Val! I think the part I dislike the most is loading the beads onto the thread - if that part could be done "magically", I might have a go with lots of beads a bit more often... but then it's still slow to do the tatting.

  5. Lovely butterfly bookmark, I am a bit like you working with beads, too many and it puts me off, as a reader I personally would not want beads on a bookmark why because the beads would press on the pages and you would end up with marks in the pages. Your butterfly I am sure looks beautiful but I don't think I could play with all those beads as I tat.
    I often use up bits of thread from the shuttles making flowers of butterflies then put them on cards, it's a brilliant way of not wasting thread. If the piece is too short I have a little bag and the bits go in there, then they are used for butterfly annteners,

  6. I think you're right about beads affecting the rhythm of tatting. Great result though.


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