Friday, February 12, 2016

Learning Kumihimo - Melange de Perles

This is another kit review.  Yah!  I learned how to do kumihimo.  I've seen a lot of the corded kumihimo and wasn't as interested in the style until I saw kumihimo with beads.  Wow!  What awesome designs out there. 

And this design - Melange de Perles Necklace by Adrienne Gaskell from the December 2015/January 2016 issue of Beadwork is gorgeous! 

I was fortunate to get a kit - because the beads and end result are very drool-worthy! -And they are gone.  When I was stringing the beads on the cords, my kit was missing some of the 3mm khaki rainbow ris magatamas (104 to be exact).  I had some other drop beads in my stash that were a matte purple iris color and would have fit in beautiful with this necklace, so I started adding them or trying to add them to the C-Lon cords.  But even with making sure the tip of the cord had glue on it to make it more like a needle and trying to squeeze the tip into a smaller slant, I could not get my purple drop beads onto the cords.  Why do beads that are otherwise the exact same size have to have different size holes?? How frustrating!!!   Anyhow, I wrote to interweave and got the extra beads (and some) mailed to me so I could finish stringing the beads. 

This was my first time doing kumihimo and I will admit that I should have probably started with something not as beady.  I learned the hard way about the placement of the beads when they go to the center of the disc - the beads need to go under the strings.  I originally put them on top of and in the middle of two of the cords - and, well, after a few rounds, I noticed that mine didn't look like the picture- in fact, the cords show up as a line on the outside of the rope.  So, a look at a video on how to do kumihimo with beads and I eventually figured it out. 

I also learned that if you mess up, its best to go backwards to undo everything - like with knitting.  After doing about 8 rows of beads, to undo the kumihimo, I decided that I would just pull all the cords out the holder and untangle.  But that was a HUGE ever-loving mess that took me quite a while to put back into a workable arrangement. 

It was actually quite fast once all the beads were strung and I stopped messing up!

And the result - the necklace feels as good as it looks. I love wearing it because it is soft on my skin (I definitely have some sensory issues with scratchy necklaces) and it doesn't get tangled with the hairs at the nape of my neck and so far it always stays in place - the back clasp stays in the back and the heavier front stays in the front.  An awesome necklace to make and I'm looking forward to trying some other beaded kumihimo ropes!


  1. I have always wanted to learn this technique - I think it is stunning! On my very long list of things to try! :) You did a beautiful job!

    1. Thank you for your comment! This necklace was a lot of fun! Have you looked at Adrienne Gaskell's website - her stuff is amazing!