bead jewelry making - beaded flower making

African Helix Instruction

This is the instruction on beading using the African Helix technique.  The African Helix can be used to make flexible tubular chains or wrap around tube objects like pens or bottles.

The African Helix

This traditional African stitch closely resembles a DNA helix, hence the name, African Helix.

Notes before you start: Use a pencil, knitting needle, a paper roll or any object that will fit the size of your African Helix's center.


Step 1: String 4 sets of 4 beads, with a different color bead for every fourth bead.
Tie the two ends of the string, (remember to leave one end longer for further beading) to form a bead ring. (you can find support using any object you can find to fit the center and remove it later).

Row 2: Pick up 5 new beads each time, with the fourth in a different color.
Loop the string back through the thread from the previous row after the fourth bead (after the different color bead).
repeat this adding 5 beads each time all around the bead ring.
Step 2: Row 3 onwards: Pick up 5 new beads each time, with the fourth in a different color.
Loop the string back through the thread from the previous row before the fourth bead (before the different color bead).
repeat this adding 5 beads each time all around the bead ring.

Continue adding rows this way until you have reached the desired length.
Remember to pull tight and keep the tension.

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