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How to stitch a Dutch spiral

Earrings made with Dutch spiral

The Dutch spiral is not so much a stitch as it is a series of stitches.  A combination of peyote and netting, the Dutch spiral is a soft, stretchy tube with beautiful drape.  Choose your thread color carefully and hold it firmly while working to help keep up the tension.

There are two parts to the spiral: the peyote section is sometimes collectively called the core beads, and the netting section is created by a loose length of seed beads and accent beads.  I suggest using differently shaped or colored beads for the core beads and the netting, at least until you're familiar with the sequence.  I really like Delicas for the way they fit together to make a nice tighter core section, and regular donut-shaped seed beads for the netting.

There are many different ways to do the Dutch spiral, but having tried quite a few of them, here is my take on the easiest way to get started.  Once you've mastered it, you can increase and decrease the netting portion to make pretty undulating shapes like in the earrings I made, shown above.

Next week, I'm sharing the tutorial for putting the earrings together!

A simple Dutch spiral tube:

Row 1: Pick up a size 8/0 seed bead (8) and loop the thread through it again to form a stop bead, leaving a tail of at least 6-8".  Pick up 6 Delicas (D) and 3 size 11/0 seed beads (SB).  Stitch through the 8 to form a loop.

Row 2: Pick up an 8 and stitch through the 2nd D.  Pick up 1D and stitch through the 4th D.  Pick up 1D and stitch through the 6th D  Pick up 1D and 3SB, and stitch through the 8 added in this row.  Make sure these netting beads sit on top of the netting beads from Row 1.

Row 3: *Pick up an 8 and peyote stitch through the 1st raised D.  Pick up 1 D and peyote stitch through the 2nd raised D.  Pick up 1D and peyote stitch through the D added in the netting stitch of Row 2.*  Pick up 1D and 3SB, and stitch through the 8 added in this row.  Continue to make sure each new netting stitch sits on top of the netting stitch of the previous row.

Row 4 and following: Repeat *the peyote section* of Row 3.  The netting stitch for each new row can be continued like Row 3 for a symmetrical rope, or it can be altered, making it longer with more seed beads or additional embellishments.

Additional Tips:
Choose a thread color that won't stand out.  You can see in my sample that the white thread is quite visible in between some of the beads.  And my tension is fairly firm!  Hold onto the tail to help control tension.

To keep track of your beads, add the same type of bead you have just exited.

There is no peyote "step up".  Simply stitch through the 8/0 added earlier in the row and begin your next row.  Use the 8/0's to count the number of rows!

You will see the spiral begin to form by Row 5 or 6.

Weave your thread tails back into the beadwork when you are done.  Don't forget to undo the loop from the first stop bead!

Here are other spiral forms that I've featured over the years:
The simple spiral
Cellini spiral
The spiral square stitch
Indespiral by Aleta Ford Baker
Twisted ladder

This post contains affiliate links: Beadaholique
Copyright 2016 Cyndi Lavin. All rights reserved. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. May be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.


Those are beautiul, Cyndi. What an elegant look you get with the spiral.
Cyndi L said…
Thank you, Eileen :-)
sheilaposter said…
Dear Cyndi,
You make things look so easy. I couldn't get this right because I would get the first three rows all mixed up. So I finally tacked the first row to a bead mat and could finally see my way. Your directions are very helpful and I love the finished earrings you made.
Cyndi L said…
Sheila! What a brilliant way to get it going! Thank you for sharing it :-)