Thursday, December 2, 2010

Beaded Bone Ornament Tutorial

I made this little ornament on a whim in a late night crafting session and I totally love it.   
Stuff you need:
Bone template (you may have to resize this so it matches the 2" scale)
White felt - enough for 5 cutouts of the pattern
Jewelry thread (I use 6lb Fireline) 
Beading needle
Embroidery needle (make sure its small enough to go through the hole in the rectangular beads)
Beads- White/clear rectangular beads (R) - 50
            Clear seed beads (CS) - 200
            Green seed beads (GS) - 225
Glue gun w/ glue
1.  Using the bone template cut out 5 bones out of the white felt.
2.  Glue three of the bones together in a stack.  CAUTION!  Hot glue only along the spine of the bone, aka the black line in the picture below.  You don’t want glue on the edges where you will be sewing on the beads or it will make this project a lot harder and you more prone to finger needle gouges. 

3.  Take about 2.5 yards of your thread and knot the end.  *TIP*  You want a pretty big knot or it will go straight through the loose weave of your felt.  Double over the end a few inches and knot the whole thing twice to make a nice hefty knot.

4.  Run your needle from the inside of your bone stack through two layers and pull your thread through until your knot gets nicely stuck.  Trim off the excess thread.

5.  Next you will sew your rectangular beads onto the edge of the bone stack.  Follow the side view illustrations below to secure them.  Don’t worry about making your stitches perfect cuz we will cover them up later.  Remember not to pull the thread too tight for the first couple beads so as to not pull your knot through the felt.  If its a little loose you can always reinforce when you come back around.
*TIP*  Angle your needle when doing the second pass for each bead.  This will help with keeping your stitches on either side of the bead, making them more stable.
Follow the pattern to keep attaching beads all the way around.  Dont worry about making it perfect cuz we will be covering your stitches later.

This is what your bone will look like when you have all the rectangular ones attached.  Knot off your thread however you like and cut the excess.

6.  You’re done with the embroidery needle now and need to switch over to the beading needle.  Thread your needle through the first rectangular bead, add three clear seed beads and run the needle through the next rectangular bead.  Add three more clear seed beads.

7.  Tie a knot with the two ends of the thread.  This will make a loop with the beads you’ve added.  Trim the excess tail.  

8.  Run your thread back through the same loop you just made but stop at the 4th seed bead.  

9.   Add 2 CS beads and run through the next R bead to the left.  Add 2 more CS beads.
10.  Now you are going to go back through a bunch of beads already on your bone in order to make a loop.  Its easier to show you the steps than describe them so just follow the illustrations below. 

11.  Repeat this step until you get all the way around the bone to the last loop.  When you get to the picture below you are on the last loop.

This time you only have to add 1 CS bead on each side to complete the loop.  Go back through your last loop one more time to reinforce it and knot off the thread.  Just make sure you end back up in the middle of the bone cuz this is where we will attach your beaded chain.
*OPTION*  If you dont want to go through making a beaded chain to hang your new ornament clip off the thread excess here.  You will have to add a piece of ribbon to have something to hang the bone with instead. (This looks really cute too.)  Skip to step 20.

12.  Now we are going to make the beaded chain.  Take 1.5 yards of your beading thread with beading needle attached and string 10 GS beads.  Go back through all 10 starting from the begining. (We are going to make this into a loop.)

13.  Pull the two ends of your thread, leaving about a small tail, until they pull the beads together making a loop.   
Tie the two ends into a knot.  Snip off the tail and go back through the loop you already made to reinforce it. 

14.  Add 9 GS beads and thread your needle back through the last bead in your previous loop.

15.  As you pull the thread tighter you will see a loop start to form.  Run your needle through the first 5 GS beads in the new loop as below.

16.  Continue adding new loops until you have a long enough chain to hand your bone on the tree.  When you have the desired length just reinforce the last loop, tie off your thread, and snip the tail.

17.  Go back to your bone with the thread still attached.  You are going to use it to attach the chain.  Run your beading needle through the 3 GS beads on the bottom of one of the ends of your chain.

18.  Run your needle back through the same line of beads on the bone where you started.  Pull tight.
Go back through this loop at least once more.

19.  Repeat steps 17 and 18 to attach the other end of your chain.  Be careful to not twist the strand when you attach it.  Reinforce your loop and tie off the thread.  Trim excess tail.

20.  You're almost there!  The only thing left to do is attach the other two felt bones you made to either side.  This will cover up your stitches.  Use your glue gun to attach them and this time I encourage you to add glue to the edges too.  

Voila!  One awesome custom hand made bone ornament your four legged friend will love.  

Craft on!


  1. Great tutorial! A beautiful ornament, thank you and hugs to today's top model - outstanding job.

  2. I'm visiting you from the Friday blog hop. Nice, detailed tutorial. What a cute model in that last picture. Makes me wish I had a dog.

    Following your blog!
    Please follow back!

  4. This is a great tutorial!! Your dog is absolutely adorable (and so is your ornament :))

  5. Love this! And it's great for dog lover's trees! (i.e. mine) :) Thanks for linking it up at Fancy This Fridays!! Hope to see you again this week!

  6. I wanna know how you got that doggie to sit so still with something dangling from her nose...raw meat? Dried bull wiener?

  7. Nobody said bribery to get cute photos isn't allowed. (It was bits of leftover hotdog.)

  8. LOL That great dog pic caught my attention on the party blog. Love it!! Your dog looks just like mine would if I hung an ornament on her nose. :-) Have a happy new year!

  9. Wow! Love the beading on this! You could probably make this into other shapes too, although, the bone is awfully cute...

  10. I made this little ornament on a whim in a late night crafting session and I totally love it. Stuff you need: Bone template (you may have to resize ...