Commonly Used Knots in Beading


The process of beading does not only focus on skills pertaining to bead stringing, but also skills in knotting. Many enthusiasts new to beading can be confused about the knots they can use. Before a beading project is started, it is essential that an enthusiast has at least basic knowledge of thread knotting.

In beading, the knots in beading are mostly used to secure the beads on lengths of string. Beginners don't necessarily need to master different knots. There are a few knots frequently used in beading projects. Listed below are the basic knots that are essential in proper beading.

Useful thread knots for beading

Knots play a vital role in beading, whether you want to secure a group of beads or secure a single bead by placing it between two knots. Knots are very useful and can sometimes be used as decorative elements as well.

1. Overhand knot – The overhand knot is the most basic type of knot and is the most widely used knot in beading. Enthusiasts usually make this knot in the thread or string before the beads are placed and when the project has been completed.

To make an overhand knot, make a loop in the thread and bring one end of the thread through the loop. Pull both ends of the thread to tighten. This knot can be done with the use of two to three lengths of thread.

2. Twofold or double overhand knot – This knot is made almost the same way as the overhand knot; the only difference is that one end of the thread is brought through the loop twice. This yields a more secure knot. Just like in the overhand knot, pulling the ends together would tighten the knot.

3. Slip knot – The slip knot is commonly used in bead crochet projects. This knot is made by first making a loop in the thread, then pulling the long end of the thread into the loop so that another loop is created. The knot can be tightened, but the loop should be adjustable in size.

4. Figure-of-eight knot – This knot is perfect for flexible beading ropes that do not need to be kinked. To make the knot, the thread should be doubled over so that a loop is visible at the top of the thread, with the shorter end on the right side of the thread. The shorter end can be wrapped over and then under the longer end to form another loop. The last step is to pull the shorter end through the loop at the top of the thread, making sure to go through the loop from above.

5. Sliding knot – This knot is often seen on beading projects that require some thread adjustments. This knot is made by laying two ends of a length of thread together, while doubling over one end of the thread. The doubled-over end can then be wrapped around both ends, securing the two ends together. To complete the knot, the strand of the doubled-over end can be brought through the original loop and both ends can be pulled to tighten the knot.

For more secure knots, the wrapping can be done more than thrice. The knot can also be made using two different lengths of thread.

When studying the different knots commonly used for beading, it is best if you practice making each knot using thicker types of thread or string rather than beading wires. This will make it easier for you to master the knots.

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Happy Beading,

-Tracy Miller

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One Comment to Commonly Used Knots in Beading

  1. Vicki
    November 6, 2011 5:21 am

    You are so awesome for helping me solve this mystery.

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