Sunday, 25 December 2011

Dagger flower tutorial

*Instruktioner på svenska finns HÄR*

So here's the English version of my "christmas gift" to my blog readers, my second dagger flower tutorial. These instructions are just for the flower, not a whole piece of jewellery -- I will leave it up to your own imagination, how to use it and incorporate it in a whole design. As always I'd love to see what you make with my tutorials so do feel free to post a link or e-mail me if you want to show me what the tutorials on this blog has inspired you to create.

If you like beading with dagger beads, don't miss my other bead flower tutorial for the Dagger Flower Drops.

This flower was developed from my dagger-and-lentil flower, which you can read more about here. One of my original inspirations was a free lentil flower tutorial at Beads Mania -- if you like cute little bead flowers, be sure to check that one out.


Supplies for one flower:

10 daggers, 16 mm
5 fire-polished drops, 7 mm
5 11/0 seed beads
Beading thread (e.g. K.O. or Fireline)

Tools: 2 beading needles, scissors

Tekniker: 2-needle right-angle weave/cross-weaving, surgeon's knot


1. Cut a comfortable length of thread (e.g. 40 cm). String one drop and two daggers as in the photo and centre on the thread.

2. Cross the threads through a dagger bead.

3. Continue stringing the remaining beads as in the previous step. Pull the threads to tighten the tension after each crossing. It's not always easy to keep the tension tight, but it's ok as you will remedy this later. At this point, it's mostly to keep the beads from tangling or swirl.

4. Make sure all daggers point in the same direction. If a dagger is trapped on the wrong side, loosen the thread tension, push the bead back to the correct position and tighten the threads again.

5. When the last drop and dagger has been strung, cross the threads through the first dagger to form a circle with the daggers pointing outwards. Pull the threads and make sure they don't catch on any beads or that a beads get tangled in the rest.

Continue by passing through the next dagger with your right-side needle and through the next drop with your left-side needle. Pull the thread before stringing through the next dagger using you left-side needle. See illustration of the thread paths below.

 (As it's hard to take a picture of this step, I've chosen to show it with just four beads, equivalent to the beads strung in steps 1-2.)

6. Making sure the tension is tight, tie the two knots with a surgeon's knot. At this point, the flower will most likely feel a bit floppy (unless you used a very heavy/stiff thread). We will fix this in the following steps.

7. Take one of the threads back to the front of the flower by going through the dagger. Keeping a tight tension, circle through the drop beads several times until the flower feels rigid and the beads are nested tightly together.

8. Return the thread to the back of the flower. Move it aside so it doesn't get in the way of the other thread.

9. Pick up the other thread and sew throught the nearest dagger of the five that constitute the five back petals. String one seed bead and go through the next dagger.

10. Repeat the previous step until you come full circle and then continue circling through the dagger and seed beads until the flower feels stabile. As before, be sure to tighten the thread as you go along so the flower firms up. Exit the beads when next to the first thread.

Knot the threads with a surgeon's knots. Finish by going through a couple of the beads before cutting the threads.

11. You flower is now ready to be used.

Tip: You can also make a smaller flower using 11 mm daggers, 3,4 mm drops and 15/0 seed beads. (You can also use 6 mm smooth drops for the big flower, but I prefer the look of fire-polished drops.)


  1. Yes, next really wonderful tutorial! Thank you very much! Greetings:)

  2. And thank you too -- I'm glad you like it!

  3. Ooh, this is beautiful. I'm not a beader but I'll pass this on to my beading friends x

  4. Great tutorial - thanks for sharing! I new to beading so this is very helpful about the way to space and string. I'm a new follower to you. I invite you to follow me at

  5. I shop quite a number of on line bead stores and ive never seen a fire-polished drop bead like this .can you suggest where to get them or something to substitute ?

    1. I've got mine from a german online shop -- -- and I also know that US seller Beads and babble on Etsy [] have them. They seem to be called briolettes rather than drops by some, such as Beads and babble.

      I've also made flowers with pressed-glass drop beads (about 6 mm big) and it works but in my opinion, facetted drops looks better. I haven't tried them myself, but I know Swarovski makes some small drops and also tip-drilled bicones that might work. Not exactly the same shape so I can't promise it will work, though.

  6. Thank you so much for such CLEAR and easy instructions. Hope to try some of your tutorials soon. I found you through The Beading Gem newsletter.

    1. I'm glad to hear you enjoyed my tutorial(s).

  7. Beautiful flowers! Thank you! I used your tutorial in a jewelry making challenge with a wonderful group of artists from Finland. The Czech daggers made the perfect, bittersweet flowers I was hoping to create. Strong, but etheral. Here is a link to both my main blog (I also posted it on my jewelry blog; link is on my main blog). I used moonstone in place of the Czech drops.

    Thank you so much!

    1. I'm so glad you found the tutes inspirational. Just visited you blog and the necklace looks fab -- the colours you chose really suits the pattern.

      I urge everyone who reads this comments and like my dagger flowers to check it out. Very pretty!

  8. You have made many magnificent tutorials, Maneki, thank you!
    I thank Rita/Toltec Jewels, too, to have introduced your blog with these great tuts of flowers in our challenge of flowers :-D
    I'm sure to try this one!

    1. Thanks, I'm glad you like my tutes and hope you'll find them inspirational!

  9. Great tutorial! I've been having so much fun today :)


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