Make Beaded Tube Beads With Peyote Stitch

  • 01 of 14

    Making Peyote Tube Beads

    How to make a tube bead with even count peyote stitch
    The Spruce / Lisa Yang

    Peyote tube beads are so much fun to make, they are almost addictive. Although their design is simple, it is easy to vary the width and length of the tube to come up with slightly different looks.

    Of course, there are also endless design and color options. Peyote bead tubes are a great way to use up small amounts of beads from other projects.

    One other thing that makes peyote tube beads interesting is that they can be made with using flat peyote and then the ends zipped together or made using tubular peyote stitch. This tutorial will show you how to make tube beads using flat even count peyote stitch.

    Continue to 2 of 14 below.
  • 02 of 14

    Materials You'll Need

    String a stop bead
    The Spruce / Lisa Yang

    Peyote stitch works best with even-sized cylinder beads such as Delica beads. Delicas snap together in each row and result in consistently sized tube beads. That being said, you can experiment with any beads and may be surprised with the results. 

    For our tube bead, we are using two colors of 11/0 cylinder beads, Fireline bead thread, ​and a tulip beading needle. Most types of beadwork thread and types of beading needles appropriate for off-loom stitches can be used for this project.

    Start by stringing a stop bead on an arm's length of beading thread. Leave a tail at least 4 inches long so you have enough thread to add a needle and weave it in to finish the bead.

    Continue to 3 of 14 below.
  • 03 of 14

    Start the Even Count Peyote Stitch

    Pick up an even number of beads to start the peyote stitch
    The Spruce / Lisa Yang

    Pick up an even number of beads for the first two rows of your peyote tube bead. We have picked up 12 beads. Our finished bead has a simple pattern of a ring of different color beads on each end of the tube.  

    To make the same design, pick up on a gold bead, ten hematite beads, and one more gold bead.

    Continue to 4 of 14 below.
  • 04 of 14

    Starting Peyote Stitch

    Slide the beads down to the stop bead
    The Spruce / Lisa Yang

    Slide the beads down to your stop bead. The stop bead is only needed for the first two or three rows of peyote stitch. It will help keep the beadwork stitch tension consistent and keep the beads in place.

    Continue to 5 of 14 below.
  • 05 of 14

    Pick up a Bead and Begin the Third Row

    Pick up a bead to start the next (3rd) row
    The Spruce / Lisa Yang

    As you pick up beads and add peyote stitches, the beads on the first row will separate and stack to form two distinct rows. Pick up a gold bead for the end of the third row and stitch into the second to last bead that you just strung.

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  • 06 of 14

    Pull the Peyote Stitch Tight

    Pull tightly so the beads stack on top of each other
    The Spruce / Lisa Yang

    Pull the thread tight.

    You may need to move the beads a little with the point of your needle to get them to stack on top of each other as you see in the picture. You may also need to push up on the stop bead as you pull the thread to keep the stop bead from moving.

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  • 07 of 14

    Continue Peyote Stitch

    Pick up another bead and stitch through every other bead on the row
    The Spruce / Lisa Yang

    Pick up a hematite bead. Skip one bead and stitch into the next bead on the prior row. 

    Continue to 8 of 14 below.
  • 08 of 14

    Pull the Peyote Stitch Tight

    Pull tight so the beads stack on top of each other
    The Spruce / Lisa Yang

    Continue to pull each stitch tight so each bead you added stacks on top of the bead below it and the beads are pushed tight next to each other.

    Continue to pick up a bead, skip a bead and stitch into the next bead for the rest of the row.

    Continue to 9 of 14 below.
  • 09 of 14

    Start the Next Row of Peyote

    Turn the work to start the next row of peyote stitch
    The Spruce / Lisa Yang

    When the beadwork is this small, we find it easiest to work in one direction, so we turned the beadwork.

    Pick up another gold bead to start the edge of the fourth row. From here on, you will pick up a bead and stitch through the next 'up' bead on the row.

    Continue to 10 of 14 below.
  • 10 of 14

    Peyote Stitch Square

    A finished square of peyote ready to be zipped up into a bead
    The Spruce / Lisa Yang

    Continue the peyote stitch until you have enough rows to roll into a tube. Our square of peyote has 18 rows. In order to count peyote stitch rows, you can either count the number of beads on each side and add them or zig-zag up the first and second columns of beads.

    In order to zip up the square into a bead, you need to make sure that if the bottom of the beadwork has an out bead, the top has an in bead in that same column. They need to fit together the way the teeth of a zipper do.

    Continue to 11 of 14 below.
  • 11 of 14

    Zip the Peyote Ends Together

    Join the two sides to start zipping up the bead
    The Spruce / Lisa Yang

    To zip the peyote ends together, curl the edges toward each other. Insert your needle into the out bead on each side of the beadwork and pull the thread through.

    Continue to 12 of 14 below.
  • 12 of 14

    Continue Zipping the Peyote Tube Closed

    Stitch through the next high bead on each side
    The Spruce / Lisa Yang

    Continue to stitch through the up bead on each side.

    This can be a tight space to work in, so it is easier if you leave the stitching a little loose and then pull it tight and together when you reach the end.

    Continue to 13 of 14 below.
  • 13 of 14

    Knot the Threads to Complete the Tube Bead

    Peyote tube beads are easy and fun to make
    The Spruce / Lisa Yang

    When you have finished zipping the two sides together, the working thread and tail thread will be coming out of beads right next to each other. We will usually tie them together with a small square knot. This helps keep the thread tension and the knot is usually small enough that it can be pulled inside a bead when we weave in the thread ends.

    Weave in the working thread and tail into the beadwork and tie it off with half hitch knots.

    Trim the thread using sharp scissors or a thread burner.

    Continue to 14 of 14 below.
  • 14 of 14

    Spiral Tube Bead Project

    Beaded tube earrings made with peyote stitch and some simple wire wrap skills
    The Spruce / Lisa Yang

    Now that you've learned to make tube beads, you can make simple tube bead earrings by adding beads to the top and bottom of the tube to keep the tube beads centered on a headpin.

    Making the spiral design tube beads is a little bit harder than a solid color or adding a border, but it is worth the effort.