Can I embellish a quilt with beadwork?
You can use many items to embellish your quilts. These include beading, silk ribbon, cording, sequins and other decorative items. You can even embroider your quilt if you know how to. If you think that you are no good at embroidery, you can buy small embroidered patches from a quilt store and sew it over the top.
However, bead embroidery is one of the most expressive. Beadwork is just like painting; it is almost subconscious. It only seems complicated but is extremely simple to accomplish. Buy good old size 12 beading needles and Nymo D thread unless you want to use extremely small beads. The thread is not integral to design so there is no need to buy embroidery floss unless you really want to.
You can work with all kinds of bead including Delicas, Czech seed beads and Japanese seed beads and larger beads. It is better if you use an embroidery frame rather than a hoop. A hoop can pull your work and cause buckling whereas an embroidery frame allows better control over tension.
If you are new to beadwork it is better that you go with an iron on transfer for pattern and then embellish it. However, if you are good at creating a mental picture of a design you may go free form. Very interesting effects can be created with colored permanent markers and clear beads can be beaded over that. Use running stitch and attach backing paper to the reverse side of the fabric.
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