A Beginners Guide To Bead Embroidery

Are you new to bead embroidery and looking to learn more? Or maybe you’re not sure what tools or beads to get for your first bead embroidery project? Then this guide is just for you! Read on to learn everything you need to know to get started, including tips on choosing the right bead embroidery tools and beads, and how to become a bead embroidery expert!

What is Bead Embroidery?

Bead embroidery is the process of stitching beads to a surface of fabric, suede, leather, or another foundation material used to embellish the surface. Bead embroidery is frequently used on clothing, accessories, and jewellery.

Essential Bead Embroidery Tools and Materials

Bead embroidery is a wonderful hobby that allows you to get creative and make fun creations without spending too much money as it does not require too many special tools or materials to get started.

Here are the four essential materials you will need for bead embroidery:

1.      Beading Foundation

While in loom bead weaving or off-loom projects beads are stitched one to another, in bead embroidery they are stitched onto a foundation fabric. 

There are many different types of beading foundations used for bead embroidery. These include leather, suede, fabric, or a semi-stiff polyester material designed specifically for bead embroidery projects such as 'GoodFelt'. We recommend GoodFelt Beading Foundation for all bead embroidery designs as it is a strong but very malleable material that is easy to use.

2.      Backing Material

The backing material is a piece of fabric that is used in bead embroidery to cover the back stitches of the project. It also protects the beadwork and makes the back of the project softer against the skin and more comfortable to wear.

An Ultrasuede backing material is often chosen by many bead artists as it is soft, supple, durable, comes in a vast array of colours, and holds its shape well during and after use. 

3.      Beading Needles

You can use a regular beading needle for your bead embroidery projects. Just make that you use an appropriately sized needle for the beads you’ve selected. Ideally, you will need a beading needle that will allow you to make several threads passes through the beads to secure them to the fabric.

If you want to make things easier for yourself, we recommend choosing a Tambour needle (also known as a Tambour hook) that is a needle specifically designed for bead embroidery. It has a bent tip that catches the thread on the back side of the fabric, pulling it to the front side, which makes it easier to attach beads to the fabric. Check out our Tabour Hook set that consists of one comfortable wood handle and six interchangeable brass needle heads and can be used for a variety of bead embroidery projects. 

4.      Beading Thread

Many different types of beading thread can be used for bead embroidery projects. To help you choose the best wire, we have created a blog article on “How To Choose The Best Beading Wire For Your Project”.

Embroidery Beads

Last but not least, you will need some embroidery beads. The great thing about bead embroidery is that you can use almost any kind of bead. Many beaders like to use Japanese Miyuki beads such as Miyuki Delica beads as they are precise in size and shape, and known for their uniformity in colour and finish. At CJ Beaders we stock a great selection of all kinds of beads in a multitude of different shapes, sizes and colours. Shop the best embroidery beads online with us today.

How To Do Bead Embroidery On Fabric?

Once you got your beading materials and beads ready, it’s time to start beading the fabric. To make this task easy, we’ve put together a step-by-step guide on how to bead embroidery fabric in 6 simple steps.

Shop The Bead Embroidery Tools and Beads Online At CJ Beaders

We hope that this little guide answered some of the questions you had on how to bead embroidery and helped you learn a little more about the different bead embroidery tools you need to get started. If you have any more questions left or need help choosing the right materials for your project, our team is happy to help.

At CJ Beaders we stock a great variety of embroidery beads and tools. Browse our online shop or contact us today and we will help you find the best materials for your next beaded creation.