Learning the basics of how to bead a star is really quite simple. In this post, I'm going to show you step-by-step how to bead a basic star. I am also going to explain the most common mistake people make and how to avoid it.
What’s the difference between these two stars? The real difference isn’t in the colors or slight pattern changes, although there are those. This isn’t a game of finding Waldo. There is a difference in the stitch I used and how the pieces were joined together.
If you have never made a star before and you were looking through social media for your next project and you found a picture of a beaded star that looked like this, how would you imagine you were supposed to make it?
In just looking at the picture, you would probably guess brick stich the individual pieces and then sew them all together. That is one way to do it, but it is not the “correct” way. Why? Because when you do it this way, you have 2, relatively flat pieces that will have to be stuffed as you sew them together if you want them to be 3D. The white star was done this way. I made 5 diamonds for each side using brick stitch and then sewed the two sides together.
I am not going to 'judge' anyone who wants to make their stars this way, but the 'correct' way is to make them with warped squares. They come out 3 dimensional without any stuffing, however a lot of people stuff them anyway so they don't get smushed.
Let's start with a simple seed bead star. If you are not familiar with peyote stitch, check out my tutorial here.
how to bead a star
I used 11/0 seed beads (not to be confused with 11/0 Delicas). The star measures 2 inches across. If you want a bigger star, you can either use bigger beads or add more rows.
- 1Light Purple 11/0 Seed Beads
- 2Dark Purple 11/0 Seed Beads
- 3Aqua 11/0 Seed Beads
- 4Silver 11/0 Seed Beads
- 5Size 10 beading needle
- 6Fireline, Wildfire or beading thread of your choice
We are going to make 5 warped squares. Pick up 4 aqua beads and make a circle. These are the 4 beads that you see in the center of the square in the picture below. The aqua beads are the outline of our star, as you can see in the above picture.
Now we are going to add 2 aqua beads in between each of the 4 beads. This continues our outline. It will probably take some coaxing to get the outline beads to sit correctly on top of each other, but it's important to get them straight.
It is also very important to keep your thread very tight through the entire process.
When you get to the last set, it's very important to remember you have to step-up through 2 beads, just like when you make a circle.
After the first 2 rounds, your piece should look like this.
Now we will add the sides as we go around. For each round, you will always add 2 aqua beads in each of the four corners (except the last round).
Now we have a 'gap' to the next corner, we are going to add a purple bead in between each corner.
You should have ended the last round coming out of the 'right' aqua bead in a corner. *Pick up 2 aqua beads and go down the 'left' aqua bead in that corner. Pick up a purple bead and come up the 'right' aqua bead of the next corner. Repeat from * 2 more times. Pick up 2 aqua beads and go down the 'left' aqua bead in that corner. Pick up a purple bead and come up through the 2 'right' aqua beads of the next corner completing the step-up.
Ending with the step-up.
Now we have a purple bead between each of our corners. In this round we are going to add 2 purple beads, 1 from each corner to the middle purple bead.
We continue doing rounds in this manner until our square reaches the desired size. For this star, we did 5 purple beads down each side.
Now we are going to do the second to the last row. The last 2 rows is where most people get lost. We are going to do this row the same as the others putting 6 beads down each side. I am using dark purple beads to that you can see which row is which.
Hang in there with me, we are almost at the finish line, but this is the MOST IMPORTANT part to understand. You know that to zip 2 peyote pieces together, 'out' beads have to match up to 'in' beads. We accomplish this by doing 1 less row on one side. So for the last row, we are only going to go half way around. BUT, we are only going to put ONE bead in each of the first 3 corners. So, you are coming out that 'right' aqua bead of a corner, add 1 silver bead and go down the left aqua bead. Add 7 silver beads down this side. Put one silver bead in the corner. Add 7 silver beads down the next side. Put one silver bead in the corner. Finish off. You should have 1 silver bead in 3 corners and 7 silver beads down 2 sides.
Why don't we put a silver bead in the last corner? Because when we zip the pieces together, it is going to match up to a corner silver bead of another piece. Why can't we do one piece with seven beads and another piece with 6 beads? Because since this is a 5 point star, and 5 is an odd number, you would have one piece that won't match up to anything.
Make 4 more warped squares exactly like the one you just made.
Now the fun part, we are going to join our squares together to make a star!
Line up the silver beads of one piece to the dark purple beads of another piece, the silver bead in the top corner should match to a corner without a silver bead. NOTE: The squares will fold along both edges, so you have to play around with folding the square both ways to see what matches up.
If you didn't tie off the last square, then your thread will be coming out the bottom silver bead and you can zip the 2 pieces together from there.
When you get to the bottom of the other side, add another piece and keep going.
You will notice in the picture above, that when I make seed bead stars, I do not include the silver beads in the middle in the "zipping". This makes for an open hole in the middle. I do close it up when I make Delica stars, because the patterns are more intricate, and usually go across the middle. This is your preference. I find it easier to close up the middle after I have attached all 5 pieces together.
You've done it! Wasn't that fun? Not really that hard once you get a little practice. When you've mastered the basic seed bead star, then you can understand how to bead a star with Delicas and designs!
Master Your Star Making Skills!
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