How Do You Do Native American Lazy Stitch Beadwork?

How Do You Do Native American Lazy Stitch Beadwork?

Native American lazy stitch is a pattern of bead work typically applied to hide or leather in rows of stringed beads. Timing varies according to the pattern and size of the piece. Supplies needed are leather or hide, beading needles, an awl, seed beads and scissors.

  1. Draw the base line

    Use a pencil to draw the base line on the hide. This serves as the ending of the bead rows.

  2. Start the first line

    Thread a needle, and tie a tailor's knot in the end of the thread. Use an awl to punch through the leather, creating two holes parallel to the base line. Pull the thread through the holes.

  3. String the beads

    String eight beads onto the thread in the desired pattern. Lay the beads perpendicular to the base line.

  4. Punch the next holes

    With the beads lying flat, use the pencil to mark a spot half a bead shorter than the string. Use the awl to punch two more holes parallel to the base line.

  5. Attach the beads

    Pull the thread through the new holes. They should be snug against the leather.

  6. Space the beads

    Continue the pattern of stringing beads, measuring, punching holes and attaching the beads. The rows of beads should rest against each other without bunching. Likewise, no leather should show between the rows. As you sew, hide the knot under the beading.

  7. Finish the beading

    When you come to the end of the thread, tie it twice with a tailor's knot. Hide this under successive rows of beading. When the piece is finished, tie two tailor's knots, and use the needle to tuck them under the final row of beading.