How to Make a Stop Bead:
Beading Basics

How to Make a Stop Bead: Beadweaving Basics...Step by step jewelry making photos.

Using a Stop Bead

Learning to use a stop, or tension, bead is a must when stitching. Its function is simple: it keeps your other beads from falling off the end of the thread as you stitch.

Plus, it gives you something to grip as you stitch. Thread alone can be slippery.

Here it is:

Stop BeadStop Bead

For easy identification the bead should be a different color and/or larger than the beads used in your beadwork.

Now here's how to make a stop, or tension, bead.

Jewelry Making Supplies

  • beading needle, size 10 or 12
  • beading thread (One G, Nymo or Fireline), conditioned
  • one bead (larger than or a different color from your project beads)

Step 1

To make a stop bead:  Thread the needle through a bead. Bring the bead down the thread until there is about a six inch tail. (You will work the tail into the beadwork once you’ve finished. If long enough the tail thread can also be used to work other beads onto the beadwork to make a clasp.)

Stop Bead 1

Step 2

Pass the needle through (in the same direction as the first time) the bead again.

Stop Bead 2

Step 3

Pull the working end of the thread taut. You’ve made a stop bead.

For added security you can pass back through the bead a second time (see top photo).

Stop Bead 3

How to Remove a Stop Bead

What do you do with the stop bead once you finished your jewelry piece?

Remove it...Pull the tail thread out of the stop bead, slide the bead off and then weave the tail thread back into the beadwork - just like you do when you end a thread. Easy smeasy!

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Visitor Comments

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Maryfrances Botkin
Columbia, MD

This site has been so helpful and inspirational to a beginner beader like me.

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You have done well!


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Merishka B.
Ladysmith, South Africa