Skip to main content

Twisted herringbone rope necklace - a tutorial

I decided my next rope necklace would use herringbone stitch and a smaller size of seed beads.  Size 15/0s were a bit too small, though, so I settled for size 11/0s.  Next, I needed to decide how much of a twist!  The "secret" to creating a twist in herringbone is to stitch back up through more beads than you stitch down each time you take a stitch.  For example: you are adding two beads with each stitch.  You stitch down through one bead in that column, and back up three beads in the next column to begin your next stitch.  After a few rounds, you'll see the twist begin.

I found a lovely pattern, very simple to do, in the book The Art and Elegance of Beadweaving by Carol Wilcox Wells.  She suggests alternating round seed beads with cylindrical ones.  You can see what happens!  Isn't that pretty how the cylinders recede?  I used round Czech size 11/0 seed beads and size 11/0 Delicas.

Start with a ladder stitch and put together as many pairs of Delicas as you want for your rope.  I used 4 pair of bronze colored beads.  I stitched a couple of rows of straight herringbone stitch, alternating the beads, and then began the twist portion.  I didn't bother to count and step up, just kept stitching in a spiral.  As I approached the other end, I began to taper down to end with just Delicas again.


At each end, I stitched two little loops that a 18 gauge wire would fit through.  I cut about 3" of wire, formed a simple loop with my round nose pliers, and slipped on a cone, a small metal bead, and turned a wrapped loop.  To one loop, I added a lobster clasp.

This post contains affiliate links: Beadaholique and Amazon

Copyright 2018 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.