Basic Beading on a Loom

See the tabs below for all products and tools used in this technique, plus any additional tips that may be helpful to you!

Weaving beads with a loom is a beautiful and traditional Native American art form that you can learn to do, too, with our Beading Technique. Once you have added the warp to your loom, you are ready to begin weaving the weft, which is what you call the thread and beads that run across the warp.
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Tip 1Use Delicas for this technique. They fit perfectly together, like bricks, with this stitch. Choose any seed bead to work with.
Tip 2For purposes of this technique we are using a orange warp thread and a red weft thread. Choose colors for your piece that coordinate with your seed beads.
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Step 1

Cut a 3-foot length of thread. Thread a needle. Knot the end of the beading thread (red) around an outside warp thread (shown orange).

Step 2

String one less bead than the number of warp threads, in this case, five beads. Keep the thread under the warp threads. Lift the beads up, and position one bead between each warp thread. Keep the tension pulled tight.

Step 3

Bring the needle back over the warp threads, and pass back through the row of beads, being sure that the weft thread sits on top of the warp threads.

Step 4

String another row of beads, pull the thread behind, and push the beads up between the warp threads.

Step 5

Bring the needle back over the warp threads, and pass back through the row of beads, being sure that the weft thread sits on top of the warp threads.

Step 6

Continue to repeat steps 4 and 5 until you’ve woven the desired length, or until you run out of thread.

Step 7

To finish one thread and add a new one, go back through the last bead.

Step 8

Go underneath the warp thread.

Step 9

Tie a half-hitch knot around the warp thread, and trim the thread close to the knot.

Step 10

Repeat steps 7-9, tying a knot between every bead until there are two beads left in the row. Pass through the last two beads, pull taut, and leave the tail coming out of the row.

Step 11

Thread a new weft thread, and bring the needle through the last two beads passed through by the old weft thread, going in the opposite direction. Pull the thread through the beads until a 3-inch tail remains.

Step 12

Go underneath the weft thread, and tie a halfhitch. Grasp the old and new weft threads, and pull them in opposite directions to even out the tension.

Step 13

Repeat steps 7-9, tying a knot between every bead until there are two beads left in the row. Pass through the last two beads.

Step 14

Return to weaving as before. Leave the thread tails until later, then pull them taut and trim the ends off.

Step 15

When you’re finished weaving, remove the piece from the loom. To finish the piece, the warp threads will need to be woven back in. Trim down any threads that are more than 8 inches long.

Step 16

Thread a needle on an outside warp thread, and pass through the two outide beads in the second row.

Step 17

Pass through two beads in the next row down, back toward the edge of the weaving.

Step 18

Pass through two beads in the next row down, back toward the center of the weaving.

Step 19

Repeat steps 17 and 18 through another three or four rows. On the last row, turn and go back through the two beads in the previous row, to complete a full loop of the thread.

Step 20

Use sharp scissors to trim off any remaining thread.

Step 21

Thread the needle on the next warp thread over, and pass through the two bead in the adjacent row, back toward the center of the bracelet.

Step 22

Continue through more rows, just as you did with the previous thread. It is not necessary to make a full loop on the last rows. Exit the two beads, and trim the thread close to the beads.

Step 23

On the second to last row, you’ll need to start by weaving through two adjacent beads.

Step 24

Weave the warp thread back in as you did for the previous threads.

Step 25

Weave the last row in the same way as all the previous rows, but make sure that the thread emerges from a bead going toward the center, instead of coming out the side.

Step 26

Trim the thread close to the beads.

Step 27

Repeat on the opposite end to secure the other ends of the warp threads.

Step 28

The last step is to weave in any weft thread tails. Thread the needle on the weft thread tail. Weave the thread back through 3-4 rows.

Step 29

Trim the thread close to the beads.

Step 30

Congratulations, you have learned how to weave using a beading loom!

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