01 of 09
Cellini Spiral Tutorial
Cellini spiral stitch is a variation of tubular peyote stitch that uses graduated bead sizes to form a unique spiral shape.
Cellini spiral is so exotic looking that we passed over it for many years thinking it had to be difficult to learn. When we finally took a closer look, we found out that nothing could be further from the truth! If you can do even or odd count tubular peyote and have a few different sizes of beads on hand, you will be able to learn the Cellini spiral stitch.
Cellini spiral stitch is most often used to make ropes for necklaces, purses, bangle bracelets or beads.Continue to 2 of 9 below.
02 of 09
Cellini Spiral Materials
To make a Cellini spiral like ours, you will need the following beads and materials:
- One color of size 11 Japanese cylinder beads such as Delicas, Treasures or Oikos (A)
- Two colors of size 11 seed beads (B) and (C)
- One color of size 8 seed beads (D)
- Beading thread such as Fireline or Nymo
- Beading needle
- Wooden dowel or pencil (optional)
- Embroidery scissors or thread burner
Cut and, if necessary, condition a comfortable length of beading thread.Continue to 3 of 9 below.
03 of 09
String Beads for Cellini Spiral
To start the Cellini spiral, you will pick up beads for the first two rows just like you would in tubular peyote. The beads are picked up in graduated size order.
Pick up six cylinder beads (A), two of the first color size 11/0 beads (B), two of the second color of size 11/0 seed beads (C), two of the size 8/0 beads (D), two more of the second color size 11/0 (C) and two more of the first color 11/0 seed beads (B).Continue to 4 of 9 below.
04 of 09
Start Cellini Spiral With a Ring of Beads
Make a circle with the beads. You can tie a square knot and then pass through the first two-cylinder beads or just pass through the beads to form a circle.
At this point, you may want to slip the ring onto the wooden dowel or pencil to hold the beadwork until the spiral begins to take shape. There are a variety of ways to hold tubular beadwork while the tube is starting to form. If you use a dowel, make sure the beads are not tight on the dowel. Being able to control the tension is important with Cellini spiral and you won't be able to do that if the beadwork is tight around the dowel. (Yes, we learned that lesson the hard way!)Continue to 5 of 9 below.
05 of 09
Work the Cellini Spiral Stitch
Cellini spiral is tubular peyote stitch. Whether it even counts tubular peyote or odd count tubular peyote stitch will depend on the number of beads you start with. In our case, we started with an even number of beads.
Now that you have your base ring of beads tied together, you will begin working in tubular even count peyote stitch. To pick up the beads to make the spiral there is only one simple rule to remember. The next bead you pick up and stitch will be the same color as the bead that your needle is coming out of!
Pick up one cylinder bead (A), skip the next cylinder bead, and pass through the next bead in the ring. Add two more cylinder beads in this manner.
Pick up one 11/0 seed bead of the first color (B), and stitch through the next bead in the ring.
Pick up one 11/0 seed bead of the second color (C), and stitch through the next bead in the ring.
Pick up one 8/0 seed bead (D), and stitch through the next bead in the ring.
Pick up one more 11/0 seed bead of the second color (C), and stitch through the next bead in the ring.
Pick up one 11/0 seed bead of the first color (B), and stitch through the next bead in the ring.Continue to 6 of 9 below.
06 of 09
Continuing Stitching Cellini Spiral Rounds
At this point, you will need to make the step up for tubular even count peyote.
As you stitch the remaining rounds, remember to always pick up the same type of bead as the bead that your thread is coming out of.
To make your spiral take shape, keep a relatively tight tension. Pulling snugly on each bead as it is added will make the beads cup into a tight spiral tube.Continue to 7 of 9 below.
07 of 09
Holding the Cellini Spiral
Holding the Cellini spiral comfortable can be a great help when you are trying to keep an even tension.
Some readers prefer to hold the beginning of the spiral just by hanging on to the tail thread.
Others prefer to slide the beadwork onto a wooden dowel, stick or pencil while they are working on the Cellini spiralContinue to 8 of 9 below.
08 of 09
Finishing Ceillini Spiral Tips and Ideas
To seal off the ends of your Cellini spiral piece, decrease at either end until the center hole is covered. To decrease, add a bead as you normally would, then skip the next space where you would add a bead. Instead, pass your needle and thread through space and pull tightly to pull the two beads close to each other. Add another bead as you normally would.
Repeat this until you have sealed up the ends of the Cellini spiral.
You can also leave the ends of the spiral open. To do this, simply run your needle and thread through all the "up" beads on either end of the spiral and pull tight to move the beads close to one another.
There are a variety of ways to finish your Cellini spiral.
- For an open Cellini spiral, try threading a piece of ribbon through it and tying the ends for an instant necklace.
- Use large bead caps on either end of the Cellini spiral, open or closed, to use it as a centerpiece or focal point for a beaded necklace.
- Use memory wire or beading wire to make a bracelet. Remember that because of the bulk of the spiral, you will need to make the bracelet a little longer than you normally would ensure that it wraps completely around the wrist.
For our spiral, we chose to make a bad by putting a curved glass tube bead in the center to give it shape and center the holes. Straight glass tube beads could also be used.Continue to 9 of 9 below.
09 of 09
Tips and Tricks for Cellini Spiral
The quantity of beads needed depends on the size spiral you are planning to make. For a spiral about 8 inches in length (for a bracelet), plan on using about 5 grams of size 8 seed beads; 10 grams of each of the two sizes 11 seed beads; and about 10 grams of cylinder beads.
Your thread choice will make a big difference in the flexibility of your spiral. Heavier threads like WildFire or Fireline combined with tight thread tension will result in a stiffer spiral. A lighter nylon thread like Nymo or Silamide will result in a softer, more flexible spiral.
How tightly or loosely you stitch will also have some effect on the finished spiral. Stitching tightly will cause the larger beads to "pop" more and will result in a more dramatic spiral. Looser tension will mean a softer and more flexible spiral. Try using a wider range of beads for a more dramatic spiral, starting with tiny size 15 beads and ending with a size 6 or larger bead.
You can use a variety of beads in your Cellini spiral. Use gemstone chips as your largest bead for a rustic-looking spiral. Small pearls, crystals, and round gemstone beads (try 4mm beads, to begin with) can give your Cellini spiral an added air of elegance.
Edited by Lisa Yang