How to make bead patterns

Updated July 20, 2017

Making your own bead patterns saves you the trouble of finding free patterns online and buying costly beading books and magazines. When you make your own bead patterns you can also guarantee that your designs are one of a kind. Making bead patterns is simple and fun. With a little beading skill and some imagination, the design possibilities are endless.

Purchase or download and print beading graph paper. ( has different types of beading graph paper available for download.) Print your graph paper on tracing paper if you want to copy a specific image.

Find jewellery that you like and want to model your pattern after, or pictures and images that you want to copy.

Lightly draw or trace the design you want to copy onto the graph paper in pencil as best as you can. Use coloured pencils to fill in the squares of the graph paper within the lines that you drew. Adjust the pattern as necessary until you have a design that you are happy with.

Use your beads and wire to try out your design and make sure it works. Modify your design on paper accordingly until you are happy with the final product.

Graph your final design in a program such as Inkscape (downloadable for free) or Adobe Illustrator.


There are different types of bead pattern creating software that help you map your pattern and the stitch you want to use with it. These are useful tools in creating your own bead patterns.

Things You'll Need

  • Bead graph paper
  • Coloured pencils
  • Beading string or wire
  • Beads
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About the Author

Rena Rossner has written many articles for "The Jerusalem Post" and "The Jerusalem Report," and has been writing professionally since 1996. She has written and managed content for many websites. She has a cookbook coming out later this year with Gefen Publishing. She holds an undergraduate degree from Johns Hopkins University in writing seminars and a master's degree in history from McGill University.