Contributed by Rachelle Dawson, Info Guru

Beads are readily available in so many colors, shapes, sizes, and materials that you can try a wide range of bead crafts and still be trying new things for a long time.

Jewelry is probably the first thing that comes to mind when most people think of beading. Indeed, you can find a multitude of patterns and project ideas for jewelry. But you can also try a variety of bead crafts besides jewelry.

Gather up your beads and supplies, and if you don’t find inspiration in your showcase beads, check out this list. For your next bead project, you might want to consider one of these ideas.

10. Jewelry

Beads work well for any piece of jewelry, and you’ll find more patterns than you could ever use. Instructions for bead crafts cover everything from rings and earrings to bracelets and necklaces.

9. Purses

Free patterns are not as plentiful for beaded purses, and the intricacy of these projects can be daunting. But if you’re looking for a masterpiece, a beaded purse might be just the project for your advanced skills. You can find good selection of patterns by searching online, particularly among Etsy sellers, or by browsing beading books in a craft store or library. You may need to know special beading stitches, crochet, or knitting in order to complete a purse.

8. Embellished sweaters

If you know how to knit or crochet, you may try a pattern for a garment, such as a sweater or vest, which incorporates beads. If you don’t crochet or knit, you can also embellish a plain sweater you already own. Draw up your own design to follow as you sew beads onto your sweater or use an embroidery pattern as a template for your beading

7. Christmas Ornaments

You can make beaded icicles, snowflakes, ball jackets, wreaths, and a host of other ornaments in whatever colors you wish.

6. Hair accessories

Bead crafts that fall under the category of hair accessories include clips and bobby pins, hair sticks, tiaras, headbands, elastics, and combs.


You can make elegant bookmarks by stringing beads onto the end of a length of ribbon. You can also make beaded bookmarks with flat metal shepherd’s hooks.

4. Nonallergenic flower arrangement

If you love flower arrangements, but you can’t tolerate what they do to your head, you can make a beaded version to grace your home or office.

3. Eyeglass chains and lanyards

Beaded eyeglass chain and lanyards are similar to necklaces, but they had different fasteners. An eyeglass chain has identical fasteners at either hand to grip the earpieces of glasses. Lanyards, whether for keys or name tags, usually join the ends together and have a hook or clip there to connect to the item you need to keep hold of.

2. Toys

Animals can be fun bead crafts to complete as toys for children, as long as the children aren’t very young. Beads could pose a choking hazard for babies and toddlers.

1. Embellished ribbon embroidery

Beads can spice up any project you’d make with ribbon embroidery: journals, pillows, clothing, wall hangings.

If none of these ideas spark your creativity, don’t forget to check out projects published in books and magazines. The more sources you investigate, the more likely you are to find a project idea which excites you.