Peyote Bracelet Tutorial “Undulations”

Here is another free tutorial for you- a peyote stitch bracelet that I call “Undulations.”  Here is what this project looks like:

In this next bracelet, I wanted to experiment with beads and color to make this  peyote stitch bracelet with an antique button closure:

Here is another view:

This bracelet allowed me the opportunity to work with a wonderful variety of red beads from   First, my inspiration for the color palette was this beautiful copper enamel pendant:

I will use the lovely heart pendant on a future project, but it worked really well as my color inspiration here.

In case you are not a beader, I used an off-loom bead weaving stitch called peyote.    Here is how you do this stitch:

Peyote Bracelet Tutorial:

You will need basic beading supplies: beading needles size 10 & 12, fireline, beading tray, scissors, and of course, BEADS!

Bead Supplies: To get the delightful wavy appearance, it is all about the bead selection and bead sizes. The color and type of bead will either make or break your bracelet.

I started with 8 beads in the first row, then using the peyote stitch, I finished the second row.  Changing beads every two rows, graduating the bead size up, then down, then up again.  Doing this will give you the great wavy look to the bracelet.

I started with a small seed bead from, size 15 Delica, in a color called Berry:

and then this bead, delica seed bead size 15:

Next is size 11 Miyuki seed beads:

The next row is this lovely matte bead from

The next 2 rows of beads were a metallic shiny bead from my bead stash, but here is a bead that looks close:

Next is a size 8/0 seed bead:

The next bead is a size 6 matte red  from my bead stash.  This bead would work instead:

the center bead is a silver lined red bead:

Collect all the beads, and be sure to size them from smallest to largest.  I start and end with the smallest size delica seed bead.  Use the Peyote Stitch diagram to learn how to bead the peyote stitch.

By Carla Barrett peyote bracelet schematic

By Carla Barrett peyote bracelet schematic


I start with 8 beads in the first row, as mentioned earlier, then peyote stitch back for the second row.  Switch to the next bead and stitch 2 rows.  Keep repeating with each bead until you get to the largest bead.  Bead 2 rows, then start decreasing the size of the beads until you get to the smallest size bead and then just repeat the process.


Closure:   On one side, I sewed on an antique button that matched.  The closure on the opposite side was made by doing a 2 bead peyote row and make it long enough to slide around the button.  Then I finished it off by attaching to the opposite side:

By the way, here is another bracelet-in-progress in a different colorway, followed by a necklace I made to match a jacket I own:


I would love to see your bracelet if you make one from this tutorial.  Also, leave a comment if you have a question about the tutorial.  The tutorial assumes basic peyote stitch know-how or the ability to learn it.

Regards, Carla

PS:  I’ve added this seed bead chart borrowed from Shipwreck Bead website:

Seed Bead Size Image Approximate Length of 15 beads
laid in a row*
15/0 15 beads=apprx. 14mm
14/0 15 beads=apprx. 15mm
13/0 15 beads=apprx. 16mm
12/0 15 beads=apprx. 17mm
11/0 15 beads=apprx. 19mm
10/0 15 beads=apprx. 25mm
9/0 15 beads=apprx. 27mm
8/0 15 beads=apprx. 33mm
6/0 15 beads=apprx. 43mm
4/0 15 beads=apprx. 58mm

61 thoughts on “Peyote Bracelet Tutorial “Undulations”

  1. I am a total, total novice in beading. What size needle exactly? The link took me to a whole page of needles. Thanks!

      • Short beading needles, I assume???????????

        Hi Joyce, I find that beading length is personal preference between using the “short” also called “sharps” and the “long” or “english beading needle.”

        I have used a longer length beading needle in the past, especially the Big Eye Needle, but it had a tendency to bend when you need to tug really hard. To be honest, I buy both, then pick when I start my project. I would have new beaders try both sizes and pick for themselves.

        Great question!! Thanks for asking! Carla

  2. Okay, I ordered my beads (yes, I really am too far from a good lbs (local bead store). One more question, will you be giving a few words of instruction on forming the loop (button hole) at the end of the bracelet? I think I could figure it out, but thought you might have some words of wisdom from your vast store of knowledge on the subject.

  3. oh- Carla, this is beautiful. Thanks for posting the tutorial…I kinda lost my interst in Peyote stitch, but this sparks it again. Thanks! 🙂

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  5. I purchased a bracelet using this pattern in beautiful greens and purples. I love it so much I’ve always wanted to do it in irridescent black and related colors. I am so happy to find the pattern explained so that I can try to make my own bracelet. Thank you so much for graciously sharing your ideas and expertise.
    I love your other pieces too…the freeform peyote are exciting.
    I have a question of you. Does it matter what size or shape bead one uses in a spiral form. Can several sizes be used? How does one know which sizes to use in what order? I’m probably not clearly explaining my dilemma. Appreciate your input. Judy

    • Judy, thank you for your comment. As for your question about spiral peyote and using different sizes/shapes, I will try to answer.

      You get a more exciting piece by graduating the size and shape of the beads in the piece. For instance, in a piece, you might want to use Seed bead sizes 15, 11, 8, 6, 4 and then graduate them both up and down for a smooth transition.

      Experiment and see if you like your idea. If you don’t like it, either take it apart and start over with a different idea or learn from your mistake and alter your design accordingly.

      The pattern above is both fun, easy and rewarding. You get a good result by choosing great colors. For the tutorial, I stayed more monochromatic, but that was to keep things easy and simple.

      I hope this answers your question. If not, just ask me again. regards, Carla

  6. Carla,
    I love your tutorials but am confused about what size stringing materials should be used with different size beads. I just ordered some #8 Japanese seed beads, and some size 11 Delica beads. What size wire or filament fits through what size beads? Should wire, silk, or clear filament, like fishing wire, be used for wide, flat peyote woven bracelets? And, what should be used for the large metal seed beads to prevent the sharp edges of the beads from eventually cutting through the stringing material? Can’t wait to get started! Thanks so much for your expertise. Looking forward to more of your tutorials & inspiration.

    • Hi Blanche, I contacted you via email, but thought I would also answer here.

      Seed beads are designed to go through the majority of stringing material. Usually it is the needle that gets stuck in a small hole, especially if you buy Czech seed beads, which is more irregular beads than the Japanese delica beads.

      I most often use Fireline, due to the strength of this line. If you are concerned about strength, but a heavier Fireline as it comes in various strengths.

      On occasion, you will use a bead (like a bugle) that has a sharp edge. You can handle this 3 ways: 1) you can ream out or file the edge with a bead reamer, or 2) don’t tug quite so hard as you work with it, or 3) throw that particular bead away if it is a stray sharp bead.

      What do you do if your stringing material is cut? I just remove the bead work until I have enough space to add a needle. Then I weave in my line end. Sometimes I tie a surgeon’s knot, then keep going. See the paragraph above on how deal with sharp-edge beads.

      Good luck! Carla Barrett

  7. I just ordered all of the red beads and supplies listed.I look forward to giving this bracelet a try. I will post back and let you know how it goes. Thanks for posting all of the links since I am a newbie and never did peyote before.

    • Hi Michelle, have fun! If you get stuck, then just leave a comment and I will help you out. Would love to see your bracelet when you are done, too. Happy beading, Carla

  8. Hi Carla!
    I completed the bracelet today. The first 3 rows had to be completely redone because they were unrecognizable…ha ha. But it turned out nice. I will send you a picture as soon as I figure out how to.

    I practiced making a peyote stitch ring while waiting for my beads to arrive which helped a lot,but these beads were much smaller.

    I accidentally switched the last 2 bead types,so I have a lot of rows of the silver lined beads instead of the matte. Lets just say sorting those little packs of beads took me some time. And I was not expecting to have such a tangled mess with the fireline,but now I’m getting used to it.
    Thanks for the beautiful project!

    • Michelle, that is fabulous! I would love to see it! Part of the fun is learning as we go. Sometimes it is a happy occurrence and sometimes it is frustrating.

      Re: tangled mess with fireline, every time it starts to tangle, I use wax or similar product to improves things. Other tips includes making sure not to pull it too tight, just taunt; using shorter pieces, letting the needle and line hand free to help unwind the twist.

      I am glad you stuck to it and finished! Good for you!

      Have you ever tried freeform peyote beading? It is very fun!

      Happy Beading! Carla

      • Hi Carla, Here’s a picture of the bracelet. I’ve seen freeform peyote but I have never tried it. I think I would like to though. Do you have any tutes of that?

    • I have a visual above for how I do it. I simply do a 2 bead wide stitch, and make it just long enough to go around the button. Too little – and it will not go around the button closure. Too big- and it will potentially fall off or come undone.

      What issue are you having?

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    • Hi Marge, the smallest size bead is 15/0 and the largest sized bead is 6/0 or 4/0, I remember. I used both Japanese and Czech beads in the mix, organizing them from smallest to largest on my workpace. Hope this helps!

      I have also added a helpful seed bead size chart, too. Look above at the bottom of the tutorial post.

  12. Hi, I love this bracelet and I kinda like the way mine ended up, but I found that mine puckered when I used the 8/0 seed bead and back to the 11/0. I just used 15/0, 11/0 and then 8/0. I did more rows of the 15 and 11’s than your pattern. Is there something you can do to keep from having the beads pucker?

    • Hi Kathleen, there are 2 tips I can give you to help with any unnecessary puckers (outside of the desired hills and valleys): 1) watch your tensioning as you bead and 2) locate an interim bead to bridge the gap between the 11/0 and the 8/0. Sometimes, I have noticed a slight size difference between the Japanese 11/0 and the Czech 11/0. Also, you can find 10/0 seed beads at some stores. Hope this helps! Carla

  13. Soooooooo cool! I’m going to make one in grays and blacks… What a great pattern! I love peyote and brick stitch – I can play for hours… Thanks.

  14. Yeah! I just finished my first bracelet! What a fun project – thank you so much for sharing! I am not sure how to attach a picture, but if you would like me to email it, I would be happy to send you the photo 🙂


    • Hi Algar, when you begin to bead with children, I will use the large perler or pony beads. However for adults, imho, they can use any size that they can see clearly, and use magnification if needed. The exception would be if a person has issues that would impact their fine motor control, then the large pony beads would be a good place to start. Different instructors will have different ways they do things. 🙂 Can’t wait to see your bracelet! Carla

  16. Hey Carla!! I just made your “Undulations” bracelet….got confused as to the 2 rows per color…I did 2 rows per size, using 4 sizes. The end result was very interesting, but the curving up and down was too severe. Can you tell me, by color, how many rows you did of each size. I am thinking you made 2 colors of size 15 (4 rows), 3 colors of 11s (6 rows), 1 color size 8 (2 rows), and 2 colors of size 6 (4 rows). the only thing is, in your written instructions, it seems to Indicate only 1 color size 6 (2 rows). Hopefully my question makes sense to you! Essentially, I need a chart!! I would love to show you a picture of my bracelet, haven’t figured out how to do that yet!! thanks so much!!

    • Shelley, go ahead and send me a photo. I do use more than 4 sizes when I make mine. Also, tell me what size and brands of beads you used, if possible.

      • I just sent you the picture. I used 15s, 11s, 8s and 6s. I don’t know what brands, maybe some Miyuki and some Tohos. I know that some I got online and some from a large chain store. Mine came out pretty, but it doesn’t have the same affect that yours do in the pictures above. Much thanks for your help!!

  17. Pingback: Peyote Necklace to Match Jacket | Carla Barrett

  18. Thank you for your Peyote Bracelet Tutorial “Undulations”. I have made three bracelets in different colors for myself. I have pretty much taught myself beading by using the internet. Would you consider posting a tutorial on your Undulations with the every other black bead or offer instructions that could be purchased? Thank you again for your talent and consideration.

    • Hi Debbie, I am also self taught, too. The latest stitch I learned was tubular RAW. Unfortunately, I am knee deep in several large projects, so cannot rework this tutorial. Once you learn the flat peyote stitch, then it is just a matter of using different size beads to get the wave. When I want to learn something new, I head over to YouTube. Someone is bound to have made a helpful video. Was there something in particular you wanted to learn?

      • Carla,

        I thought that the bracelet that I was looking at was your work. I did another search on Pinterest – it’s Nita E Kaufman’s work. Sorry for my confusion. Thank you for your quick response to my question. I too use YouTube. It’s amazing how generous people are. Again, thank you for your Undulations tutorial and your time.


      • Debbie, Thanks for mentioning Nita’s work, I am unfamiliar with her work and patterns. My work and tutorials are based on experimentation as I do not follow patterns when I work.

        Any suggestion that I copied someone else’s work without crediting is actually insulting. My inspiration for this pattern was a freeform piece I saw in the mid 2000’s.

        My work in all mediums I work in speak for itself,.

  19. Hi Carla could you please tell me if you made the button on the first picture and if so how thanks Sharon

    • Hi Sharon, thanks for stopping by. The button was one I found, however, you could make one easily. Google either covering a small wooden bead or how to make one to get the directions. Cheers! Carla

    • Hello to Marcie and everyone at Team She! When I get back in town from my current travels, I would be happy to show you how in person. Very easy to make. Hugs, Carla

  20. Hi Carla, loved the bracelet. Regarding the necklace, how do you make it stay nicely without curves-some kind of decreasing/decreasing on each side????

    • Mali, you could create a bracelet on one size beads, however, you are correct in that you would need to do some increase and decrease to get it to curve or have curved edges. I much prefer the way I do it in my tutorial- varying the size of the beads. I have even adapted my pattern to make some butterfly bodies for a friend’s art quilt. I plan to show that once I am done.

      Are you having any issue with the first row or two? The first two rows you feel like you are all thumbs, then it locks nicely into place and you can bead fast. Thank you for writing! Carla

  21. My bracelet looks different than your, I think I messed up with number of rows. I did 2 rows (down & up) of 1 color each, 6/0, 8/0, 11/0, 15/0. 4 colors…one for each size. Was I supposed to do 2 colors each size? Thanks for your time.

  22. Hi Carla,
    I absolutely love your purple “Undulations” bracelet. I was curious did you start with 15/0’s on that one. Also the closure is amazing!! How is the clasp done?
    Thanks for sharing your expertise.

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