A quick history of bead embroidery and a giveaway!

Bead embroidery although labor intensive is well worth the effort in your next creation.  The history of bead work goes back several thousand years and is found frequently on ceremonial clothing and robes found in archeological sites throughout Europe. Archeologists studying African cultures have unearthed shells used as beads that date back over 72,000 years ago where they were used on clothing and accessories for ornamentation.

img courtesy of u oxford A quick history of bead embroidery and a giveaway!

Image courtesy of University of Oxford

Native Americans are well known for their bead work and embroidery too.  Next time you are at your local art museum take a look at the bead work from  various Native American tribes.  The precision with which they embroidered the beads is mind blowing.

iroquois beadwork A quick history of bead embroidery and a giveaway!

Iroquois Bead Embroidery late 1700

plains beaded hide sheath A quick history of bead embroidery and a giveaway!

Plains beaded hide sheath. Image courtesy of Sotheby's

Bead embroidery is found on the latest stunning runway looks almost every season.

naeem khan fall 2013 A quick history of bead embroidery and a giveaway!

Naeem Khan Fall 2013

And, of course we see it on handbags and accessories too. Not so much different from they way our ancestors used beads whatever part of the globe.

Beads can be embroidered on leather, suede and virtually any type of fabric.  Bead work will really make your next project, garment, or accessories really stand out.  For this week’s giveaway we are giving one lucky reader the book Bead Embroidery by Yukiko Ogura.

 A quick history of bead embroidery and a giveaway!

Yukiko Ogura

For this week’s question please answer in the comment section below and you will be entered to win.

Have you ever done bead embroidery work and if so what did you embroider with beads?  Do you use beads on clothing, accessories, tennis shoes!?

Do tell!

We’ll announce a winner on Monday! Good luck icon smile A quick history of bead embroidery and a giveaway!

* This contest has ended  *

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48 Responses to A quick history of bead embroidery and a giveaway!

  1. Jean Lowenberger says:

    No I have never done any bead embroidery. It looks very challenging though and it would be a wonderful prize to win.

  2. Laura says:

    No , but I would love to learn !

  3. Patty Truitt says:

    yes, I’ve done beading on a jean jacket,belts,shoes,purses,bracelets etc. I love doing beading on what I’m sewing. I learned when my brother was in scouts and he was in Order of the Arrow, I helped my mom with his Indian outfits. A great learning experience.This is a great give away.

  4. Leora B says:

    I have done very small projects, like Cross Stich Christmas ornaments., as stated above very challenging and labor intense.. Maybe the book will give me some shortcut tips, ..

  5. Rosa says:

    No, have not done this but I do have a project(small purse) where I plan on hand sewing a few beads..

  6. Angi says:

    No but looks like fun!

  7. ronda halvorsen says:

    Have my giant jar of shells found from the islands and Oregon coast. Have the perfect idea for a wall hanging but don’t know how to start the process…….
    The book would be great!

  8. Linda S says:

    Last summer I spent nearly 6 months sewing beads on an elaborate wedding dress for my niece. It was well worth it!

  9. Kim says:

    This looks so elegant. I have never worked with beads but would love to try a project other two using them.

  10. Elaine S. Larson says:

    I love using beads on many different items I have made. I do counted cross stitch and have made samplers, ornaments, and other items. I have made trim for clothing for the Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA) and added them to purses , table runners, and other craft projects. This book looks FANTASTIC!

  11. Jeanne says:

    I have not tried it, but I have a couple of very old samples of Indian bead embroidery that came from my grandparents. This might be something new to try in a few years when I retire!

  12. Sue says:

    I have embroidered silk paintings with beads and applique to add depth and texture and interest.

  13. Barb says:

    no, I have not done bead embroidery. But I am very excited to learn how!

  14. Diane says:

    No have watched my son, who does beautiful work, I would love to try.

  15. Connie Rabun says:

    Never attempted bead embroidery, but would just love to learn. It looks absolutely stunning! I have completed a few native american beaded earrings, so this would really expand and merge two things I love to do. Beading and embroidery.

  16. kbo says:

    I have beaded a black velvet evening handbag to go with the black dress which I added black beading to conceal the low cleavage. Now I’d like to try beading some high heels. Black of course!

  17. V.Abney says:

    I have done some Japanese bead embroidery… Made an evening clutch. Still deciding on the next application of beads.

  18. Mary Mac says:

    I have added beads to an old sweater to give it a little bling. I use most of my beads on my cross stitch projects.

  19. Barbara Norton says:

    I haven’t done any bead work but would love to!

  20. Laurie Sieg says:

    I accented a machine embroidered hydrangea with blue and violet beads as a gift for my daughter-in-law. It turned out beautifully and the beads added so much to the delicate design.

  21. Clem says:

    I have done beading, I have done embroidery, I have taken a beading embroidery class, but have not actually finished it. It was machine beading!!

  22. Andra Weber says:

    I am addicted to bead embroidery and would love to have a chance to win this book. I just finished my eighth necklace tonight and will be posting it to my blog on Saturday.
    Check it out if you have the time. http://andrasjoyfuljourney.blogspot.com/

    Thanks again for hosting the giveaway and the quick history lesson on bead embroidery.

  23. Cheryl says:

    I do crazy quilting, therefore I have done a lot of bead embroidery. Not only do I use beads in that way but I try to embellish just about anything with beads! A new book to give me more ideas? Who could ask for more? ;D

  24. carole crafty says:

    When I was a child in the 50′s I had a small loom. Now I have learned to bead on cloth and make some ornaments. I like Sue Spargo’s quilts with wool and beads also Barb Cribb has wool kits to embellish with beads and floss. Sure could use some more ideas for my beads!!!!

  25. Marcia Herath says:

    I haven’t yet but would love to win the book and give it a try.

  26. Tillecha Harris says:

    I have used bead embroidery on bags and an art quilt. I’d love to have a new bead embroidery resource!

  27. Ellen says:

    I have made beaded embroidered Christmas ornaments. Loved them.

  28. Amy Johnson says:

    Yes I’ve done a bit of bead embroidery! I made a 1910 corset for an opera and did a border around all six of the boning pieces using pink/white glass beads. It was long hours of work but the effects were brilliant!!! I would love to learn more using this book!!

  29. nushechka says:

    No, I have never done bead embroidery

  30. hueisei says:

    Nope. I have not done any bead embroidery before. Love to try someday.

  31. Jonni says:

    I did a piece that looks sort of like a camellia. I used a couching technique. Other than that, just as accents in needlework and cross stitch.

  32. Debbie says:

    I have never done any bead embroidery, but I woul like to learn.

  33. Kathleen says:

    I embroidered a wedding dress and added beading. It is very time consuming but so worth the outcome.

  34. I used to give handmade beaded gifts – tops of gift candy jars.

  35. Karen Poole says:

    I have done some bead embroidery on a small silk purse, it is just so stunning! I recently purchased a book about hand beaded purses and want to learn how to combine the hand beading with Silk Ribbon embroidery on garments and accessories, I think both are just stunning and would really make such an impact. I would LOVE this book, it would aid me in my journey of learning how to do the bead work! What I did on the silk purse was just put beads along the already printed lines of some leaves and in between the beads, I used chain stitch embroidery with size 8 hand embroidery thread, it wasn’t the greatest looking, but my first step on the way to learning!

  36. Lela says:

    I have never tried working with beads, but would love to learn more.

  37. Joan Maddox says:

    I have done some bead work with skating costumes but very simple things — I was just following instructions. I would love to learn how to emblish clothing with beads.

  38. Jeanne Huckaba says:

    I’ve never done embroidery beadwork, but am ready to try! Years ago I beaded small headbands for the grandchildren’s Halloween costumes. Love the beautiful designs created! Jeanne

  39. sue says:

    I did some beading and sewed some flowers on my daughter’s wedding dress which
    I was still finishing on her wedding day because she had changed her mind so many times about the design and the decorative details.

  40. wanda elfrink says:

    I did a beaded headdress on white silk for an art and science competition.took six week and the whole headdress was covered in beads. it took first place and I have been doing it ever since now I am making little beadcovered jewel boxes

  41. i designed my daughters communion dress from handwoven ivory silk. the bodice was pleated using a pleating machine – i smocked the whole piece 44 rows and 132 stitches – i think !! accross each row. every third stitch i had to sew on a bead to create the pattern/design.
    it was really lovely one i had finished it took about 1and half hours per row.
    there was a just enough left after cutting out the bodice pattern for me to make a panel to stitch into a matching (little cute) cream silk posy bag.

  42. Diana Gildersleeve says:

    I made my daughters wedding veil and decorated the hair piece with beads. My first effort. I feel it could have been better but the main thing is “she loved it”.

  43. Diana says:

    I made my daughters wedding veil and decorated the hair piece with beads. My first effort.

  44. Betsy Haman says:

    Yes, I have done bead cross-stitch. It was very challenging but also very beautiful and rewarding.

  45. Mary Green says:

    I love beads. Have added them to embroidery work only a few times, but did crochet small amulet bags with beads on every stitch – making enuf for everyone in my quilt bee (12) as well as other friends and family members. I’ve made one small quilt using beading embroidery. I’ve also made some felt Christmas ornaments from a kit and they had beads with the embroidery.

  46. Pauline Gardner says:

    I have done small projects like small purse, Christmas ornaments, . Hope to do more in the future.small designs on jackets

  47. Kathy de ravel says:

    yes I have done some beading on table cloth. To do necklaces and serviette rings. Love it but not talented like the pictures above. Would love to learn to do it through the book.

  48. Thank you for a great explanation. I was looking online for a similar idea and really appreciate it

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