Creative Shapes with Peyote Stitch – Teardrop Component

Hello and welcome back to my blog. Recently, I received a special request from a very nice lady on my Facebook page. Corinne Passero Basta sent this photo to me and asked for my help with the teardrop component. 
In this tutorial, I will show you one way that I was able to work out the teardrop component, and I will discuss a few other ideas I have on how to achieve the shape. 

The technique I used is the same circular peyote technique we have used to create our other Peyote shapes. However, we will have to utilize increases on the front and back sides in order to account for the expansion of the beadwork on a curved plane. 

This tutorial is an intermediate project and assumes that you are familiar with circular peyote, and dimensional beading techniques as well 2-drop and 3-drop peyote.

Materials List

I decided to demonstrate the shape using two colors. Color A is used only at the point or corner and Color B makes up the remaining portion of the bead work. Feel free to use any colors you like, or even a single color as used in the original photo. 

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Getting Started

We begin each of the first seven rounds with two Color A beads. Followed by an odd number of our Color B beads to create the slopes and curve. 
In this sample, I began by picking up two Color A followed by Color B. Remember that in peyote stitch projects, the initial beads we pick up, constitute the beads of Row 1 and Row 2.

Pick up 2 Color A and 45 Color B. Check your bead count before passing through all the beads again from tail to top, to form the beads into a loop. 

At this point, you can either tie two overhand knots, but I do not recommend it since we will need to pass through these beads a few more time. 

To close the bead work and get into position for Row 3, pass the needle through the very first Color A bead. 

Row 3

Pick up 2 Color A and sew down the next bead on the base. This is a Herringbone stitch, we use to create the turn or point of our teardrop. 

The two beads should sit above the two color A on the base in an inverted v position. 

From this point, we use regular peyote stitch around the bead work.

Pick up a Color B, skip over one bead and sew through the next. 

As you work each stitch, make sure the beads your are adding, position themselves, side by side, next to the bead you are skipping over. 

As you add the last Color B bead of the round, make sure to sew up through the Color A bead from the previous round and step up into the first Color A bead of the current round. 

Row 4

Row 4 is worked the same as Row 3.
Pick up 2 Color A and sew down the next bead. 

Peyote around the remainder of the row using Color B beads. 

As you add the last bead of each row, remember to step up by sewing through the last Color A of the previous row and the first Color A of the current row. 

Now it is time to work some increases into the component to keep it laying flat. As I worked through this tutorial, I realized that it can be made even better and will explain the details later. If you know of a better way, please feel free to comment so that other’s can share your experience. 

The remaining rows on the front side of the teardrop begin with the same 2 Color A beads as before. I have decided to simply write out the sequence of the regular single drop and multiple drop counts for you. Where you see a 1, take a normal peyote stitch and where you see a 2 take a 2-drop stitch.

Row 5

  1. Herringbone stitch using 2 color A.
  2. Seven regular Peyote stitch with Color B. 
  3. Follow the instructions above as follows: 2 – 1 – 2 – 1 – 1 – 1 – 1 – 1 – 2 – 1 – 2.
  4. Do the remaining 7 stiches using regular peyote and step up at the end. 

Row 6

  1. Take a Herringbone stitch using 2 color A. 
  2. Regular Peyote stitch around thee remainder of the row using Color B. As you reach the 2-drop peyote sets, remember to sew through both beads.
  3. Step up after adding the last bead. 

Row 7

On this row, we will not take a regular herringbone stitch.

  1. Instead, pick up 1 Color A and sew down the next color A. 
  2. Take 8 regular Peyote stitches with Color B.
  3. Follow the instructions above as follows: 2 – 1 – 2 – 1 – 1 – 2 – 1 – 1 – 2 – 1- 2.
  4. Take the remaining 8 stitches using regular peyote and step up at the end by passing through the last color A of the previous row and sewing across the single color A bead at the top. 

The Back Side

Now we need to get into position to create the back side of the component. To do this, we are going to sew into the center of the bead work and build the back side up and out from the center. 

Sew down through the five Color A beads on the diagonal of the point and into the first Color B bead, as shown.

20210304_123241

The rows of this portion of bead work are not as uniformly stitched as before. As you can see from the position of the working thread, we will no longer begin each row at the point or turn. Instead we begin using regular peyote to add the Color B beads of the round and make the turn towards the end of each round. The step up also changes positions as each row progresses. 

The base row of beads from which we begin is Row 1. The back side of the bead work will be worked as Rows 2 – 6.

Row 2

Using regular peyote and Color B beads, work around the bead work.

Add a color B bead as you sew into the turning point.

To bridge the corner and begin the pointed turn, pick up 2 Color A and sew down through the bead that we started the round from and step up into the first bead added.

Rows 3 and 4

For the next two rows, take regular peyote stitches using the Color B beads around the bead work until you reach the point. 

At the turn, you will sew into the Color A bead as you add the last bead on this side of the turn. 

Pick up 2 Color A and sew down through the Color A on the opposite side of the turn. 

Notice that on Row 4 you will have one more Color B bead to add before stepping up. On Row 5, you will need to add two more Color B before stepping up. 

Once again, we need to work some increases on Row 5, in order to keep the bead work as flat as possible. 

Row 5

Because we are starting the row away from the turn, the stitch sequence will have to be adjusted so that both sides of the back work out evenly. 

Stitch the following sequence for Row 5:

  1. Take 4 regular peyote stitches using Color B. 
  2. Follow this 2-drop and single drop sequence: 2 – 1 – 2 – 1 – 1 – 1 – 1 – 1 – 2 – 1 – 2.
  3. Take 7  regular peyote stiches to the turn.
  4. Take a herringbone stitch at the turn using 2 color A beads. 
  5. Take 3 more regular peyote stitches with color B beads and step up. 

Row 6

The final row is worked using regular peyote stitch and Color B beads until you reach the turn. 

Add the last 2 Color A beads to the point. 
Peyote regularly with Color B beads for the remainder of this row and step up at the end. 

All that remains to be done, is to zip the front and back sides together. 

Closing the Bead Work

To zip the bead work together, we will use the high beads of Row 7 on the front and the low beads of Row 6 on the back side.

We do not add any more beads at this time, as we are pulling the two rows together to form a seamless dimensional shape.

Simply sew back and forth between the high and low beads and pull the two sides together. Remember to sew through both beads of your 2-drop sets along the way.

At the point,  you will sew up one Color A along the side, across the Color A bead at the tip, and down the Color A bead on the opposite side. 
Continue zipping the bead work closed to the end.

Weave off the thread, by following the diagonal thread path through the beads until secure. 

Now that I have shown you how I worked out the teardrop shape, lets talk about the things I might have done differently. 

In retrospect, I think the curve might have worked out slightly better if I had continued using increases on Row 6 of both the front and back sides of the component.

Another thought I had is that the component also might be worked as tubular brick stitch. Although I haven’t worked out how to create the turn and point. 

All in all, I am quite satisfied with the look of the teardrop but I may revisit this component again if I decide to use it in a project. I hope you have enjoyed this tutorial. 

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