Friday, November 20, 2009

Lacy Looped Fringe Instructions

Loop-ended fringe

Just as with spikes, you can end a spike fringe stitch with a loop instead of with a big bead and a pivot bead or any of the other variations we’ve already discussed. All by itself, I have to say this doesn’t make a terribly exciting fringe.

It should be obvious from the diagram how you do it: string on enough beads for the desired length of fringe, then string on enough more to make a graceful loop (the 7 pictured are a minimum; I actually like my loops with 8-10 beads) and then go back up the first lot of beads you strung. (Again, probably more than 5. Think 10, 15 beads at a minimum if you want a gracefully swaying fringe.)

Where looped fringes really come into their own is when you start adding loops before you get to the end, like this:

It does make a difference which way your thread runs, so bear with me while I dissect this one in a little more detail:

String on 4 beads. Now string on 7 more beads and go through the 4th bead again, in the same direction as before. (If you keep stringing in the same direction as before your loops will dangle gracefully. If you string back into the base fringe in the opposite direction then your loops will stick out. You could think of them as perky and individualistic, but I find the effect is more like that of a person with very curly hair on an extremely bad hair day.)

And that’s about it, really. String on 4 more beads, then do another 7-bead loop maintaining the direction of stringing, keep on this way until your fringe is long enough, then close it off with one last loop and run the needle back up through all the main fringe beads but without passing back through any of the loop beads.

Massed together, these multi-loop fringes can give a beautifully rich and lacy look. I used them to decorate the strap and half the beading on Crazy Lace Cascade. The original crazy lace agate stone had bands of even color on one side and a wild tumble of pale peach and pearl curls on the other side; I tried to duplicate that effect in the beading, with fringes falling over the stone as well as around it. (see previous post for a picture, or go to my website for a really detailed picture.


  1. OK, it's on my to do list tomorrow! I'm in the process of beading a quilted piece now and this just might work perfectly for something different from my bugles! I'll keep you posted!



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