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How-to

Video: How to Machine-Bead a Design

Watch this tutorial to see how to machine-bead any design.

Evamarie Gomez and Judith Neukam; Shot by: Gary Junken

If you love the luxurious look of beading but hesitate to hand-sew countless beads, try machine beading.

In “Embellishments: Machine beading,” Threads #170 (Dec. 2013/Jan. 2014), author Cindy Rowell explains how to create a beautiful beaded flower motif by machine. You’ll learn how to select compatible beads and machine needles and how to execute a basic flower. From there, you can try all sorts of different designs.

Watch this Threads Essential Techniques video tutorial to see how to sew beads securely using this method.

Don’t miss other embellishment techniques like this one by purchasing a print subscription of Threads or by becoming a Threads Insider. Insider membership offers exclusive access to expert technique videos, the searchable Threads archive, in-depth articles, 360-degree views of Threads tested and sewn garments, and more.

Have you used machine beading in your sewing? If so, what projects have you used this technique on? If not, do you plan to try this technique?

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  1. linrussell | | #1

    Wow that is so cool!!! Thanks for showing a great video tips of techniques.

  2. hermom | | #2

    What a fun technique to learn how to do. I will keep this in my "bag of tricks"

  3. Couture111 | | #3

    Quicker to do it by hand!

  4. sandysewin | | #4

    It looks intriguing, but seems to me that it would be neater and faster to do it by hand.

  5. MaryCorbet | | #5

    Great idea, but much, much faster and more accurate by hand, especially if using a tambour hook!

  6. user-1109870 | | #6

    I have sewn thousands of beads on garments and quilts. Hand stitching rules!! Much faster and neater!

  7. User avater
    newimage | | #7

    Yet again in trying to view video stream "Machine Beading", Threads #170 (December 2013/January 2014), author Cindy Rowell I am faced with this Error Code:
    VE_FMS_CONNECT_FAILED 'Please try again later'
    This also happened in September 2013, everything normal until now - nothing my end has changed - soooooo annoying!

  8. MomWiz | | #8

    This is wonderful information for those not used to hand sewing. I don't think it will reduce the number of "countless beads" that the description suggests, though! As an ardent hand stitcher in several techniques, my first question was "Why?" For myself and apparently several others on this forum, hand sewing would be faster and more reliable. Still, I will try it just to test the theory! Thanks for the demo.

  9. User avater
    newimage | | #9

    TAKE 2:
    Yet again in trying to view video stream "Machine Beading", Threads #170 (December 2013/January 2014), author Cindy Rowell I am faced with this Error Code:
    VE_FMS_CONNECT_FAILED 'Please try again later'
    This also happened in September 2013, everything normal until now - nothing my end has changed - soooooo annoying!
    Even emailed Threads but so far have only received their automatic response but I will persist!

  10. Evamarie | | #10

    To 60_plus_learner: I’ve done some testing and cannot duplicate the same error. Is this occurring with all videos or just this one? I suspect that your (Adobe) Flash plug-ins may not be up-to-date. Please make sure you have installed the latest version of Flash (visit http://get.adobe.com/flashplayer/), clear out your browser’s cache, and try again. If this doesn’t work, please call our customer service department at 800-477-8727. Please let us know if you continue to experience issues with viewing this video.

    Best Regards,
    Evamarie Gomez
    Web Producer

  11. User avater
    newimage | | #11

    Greetings Evamarie Gomez, many thanks for your reply. As at this evening (Australian Eastern Standard Summertime) on November 6, I have been able to successfully watch "Machine Beading" and thoroughly enjoyed it! Nothing wrong with any other sites except Threads Insider and my Adobe is the latest version - guess it was just a glitch between here and the USA but soooo annoying. I too think it is quicker by hand but that's only because I'm used to beading that way. Will have to try this even just for the experience.

  12. user-2126926 | | #12

    This beading by machine idea is perfect for Christmas Cards. Thank you for the timely printing of this wonderful idea.
    Connie Mama Designs

  13. mylisa | | #13

    Interesting, but easier by hand, I think.

  14. User avater
    sewinggal1 | | #14

    Having done beading by hand, I don't think this is any faster, but now that I have nerve damage and can't do hand work, this does provide an alternative method. I will be trying it with an embroidery hoop, to keep the fabric taught and flat. I noticed that the fabric tends to lift up and bunch up when she does the beading. I'm sure a hoop would make it easier. Thanks for the video! :)

  15. scottie335 | | #15

    I've always hand-beaded, but this is another option. I would probably use a tweezer to hold the beads, so I could see better.

  16. user-2658237 | | #16

    This looks like an easy way to sew on beads. I'll have to try it at some point. The trouble is finding small enough needles at my local Jo-Ann's.

  17. RosieFlamingo | | #17

    I have a new high end sewing machine and I am looking forwars to finding exciting things to do with it! I am sure machine beading will be a perfect way to play with my new machine and learn a new technique!

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