Chevron Chain
A Native style chain stitch.

Chevron Chain

Traditional Chevron chain is a variation of the netting stitch.  The technique featured here uses two needles to weave an arrowhead style chain. To begin, you will need a length of thread that is 4 times the length of the desired chain, plus 14 inches. If you are making a very long chain, you can start with 3 times the desired length, and add thread once the second layer of stitching has begun.

Two bead colors are recommended when trying out this stitch. The traditional Chevron chain uses 12-bead loops for the base. To increase the number of beads in the rows, you must make sure that each base loop has an odd number of beads on each side, and that the second row beads can reach between each loop.

Materials:

Seed beads

Beading thread

Two beading needles

A square of felt or other padded material

 

1) Thread a needle at each end of your beading thread. Tie a knot with the tag ends, around the main thread, so that the needle is secure. Grasp both needles with one hand, and gently stretch out the thread with the other hand to find the center.

2) Place your felt or cloth in front of you on your work surface, and pin one needle in the top left corner. With the other needle, pick up 12 seed beads and slide them down to the center of the thread.

3) Pin the right needle, and pick up the left needle. Stitch up through the last bead picked up to form a loop. Pull the beads snug.

 

4) Pick up 6 beads with needle R, and 5 with needle L. With needle L, stitch up through the top bead on thread R. Pull snug.

 

 

5) Continue adding beads in this manner until the chain has reached the desired length.

 

 

6) Pick up 11 beads and stitch back up into the beadwork to form a loop at the end of the chain. Continue through the first 3 beads on one side of the previous loop. Pull the beads snug, and pin up the opposite thread for now.

 

7) Pick up 7 beads, and stitch up through the second bead in the loop, and the third bead again. Pull tight.

 

 

8) Stitch up through the last three beads added again and pull snug.

 

 

9) Pick up one bead, and stitch through the third bead in the next loop.

10) Repeat steps 7-9 for one side of the chain. When you reach the end, weave around the last loop and secure the tail thread in the beadwork.

11) Flip the beadwork, and pick up the remaining needle. Weave around the end loop and exit from the third bead in the next loop, on the blank side. Repeat steps 7-9 for this side of the chain.

 

12) When you reach the end, weave around the last loop and secure the tail thread in the beadwork. Attach jump rings and clasps to the end loops.

Variations:

You can also add the clasp or other finishing components by picking them up with the first and last bead loops.

Make the last loop larger for a loop-and-toggle closure by picking up more beads. You can add peyote stitch with the second needle for strength before stitching the second side of the chain. (Step 11).

Adding and Ending Thread:

To finish a thread, pick up one bead in Step 9, and stitch through the remaining beads in the current loop. Stitch across to the next loop, and down towards the completed beadwork. Re-enter the previous loop on the finished side, and re-trace the thread path for the chain. Tie knots along the loops if desired.

Attach a stop-bead to a comfortable length of thread, leaving an 8 inch tail. Stitch up through the last 3 beads from the previous chain stitch (Step 8), and the bead added in Step 9. Stitch through the third bead in the next loop, and continue stitching normally. (Steps 7-9).