The more I play with PSB, the more I like it. (And in case I threw you for a loop, PSB is right here in the Shelly Dictionary. It stands for Paint, Stitch & Bead.) Today, I want to show you a little experiment adding beads to one of my favorite stitches. I call it the Beaded Palestrina Knot.
The first time I tried adding beads to the Palestrina Knot stitch, the results were a bit wonky. I had worked the knots very close together, and the size 8 seed beads did not fit properly between the knots. But, it got me started down an interesting path, so I’ll call it good.
Before moving on to a “real” project, I decided to do an experiment on my doodle cloth. I stitched a line of Palestrina Knots along the edge of one shape, with the stitches getting closer together as I progressed.
Getting from Palestrina Knots to Beaded Palestrina Knots was quite easy. Or perhaps I should say it was quite easy using my rather unconventional methods!
I threaded a small needle with Silamide beading thread using a color that would blend in with the stitching and background. After bringing the needle up from the back side of the project, I picked up one bead…
Ran the needle under the leg of the knot…
And pulled the thread gently. Just as I expected, the bead snuggled in between the adjacent knots for a very nice look.
When I got to the end of the line of stitching, I took my needle to the back side of the fabric, made sure it was pulled snugly (but not too tight!) and knotted it off.
In Search of Goldilocks
This was a quick experiment, but I learned something really important – It’s all in the spacing!
If the knots are too close together, the beads can’t snuggle in close to the line of stitching. If the knots are too far apart, the beads are not supported and they can look a bit sloppy.
If you look at the top right corner of this photo, you’ll see that the stitches are a little too far apart. The spacing is much more pleasing in the lower left corner where there’s just enough room for the bead to slip in between the knots.
On the flip side, scroll back to that First Attempt photo earlier in the post. Now that you know what you’re looking for, can you see how those stitches are too close together?
For the best looking Beaded Palestrina Knots, we have to find our Goldilocks stitch distance. Not too close, not too far apart. It’s all about finding that often elusive “Just Right.”
If you are like me, experiments like this will have your Art Brain turning cartwheels! What about…
- Beads to the outside of the curve instead of the inside
- Beads on Both Sides of the stitching line
- Larger or smaller beads (or both!)
- Contrasting color beads instead of a matching/coordinating color
Oh goodness, the possibilities are endless! Are we allowed to have this much fun?
More Beaded Embroidery Stitches
If you love the idea of adding beads to your embroidery, check out:
And, if you are in need of a video on how to make the Palestrina Knots, check out this video from Mary Corbet at NeedleNThread.com.
Do you see something I haven’t thought about for this Beaded Palestrina Knot stitch? Chime in with a comment. I’d love to hear your suggestions!