Saturday, April 9, 2011

A Bracelet a Week: The Summer of Tilas

Openwork Right Angle Weave Tila Cuffs

This week’s bracelet is actually two - a double dose of Tila bead goodness! The first one started as an experiment, and it turned out so well that I had to make one more, so that I could share the technique in an upcoming tutorial.

Tila beads are everywhere right now, from bead shops to our favorite magazines and blogs. Even though they are the hottest new bead of the year, I’ve been having trouble finding Tila projects that I really like. Seed beads are my muse, and I rarely find myself drawn to designs that don’t have a backbone of good old fashioned round seeds.

I wasn’t really pleased with my first attempt at using Tilas. They do make great marshmallows, but I wasn’t at all satisfied with what I had done. Their potential had not been reached. So I started thinking of ways that I could use them that would suit my style, and make good use of their unique shape.

Right Angle Weave Tila Bracelets

The best idea I had was to try and combine them with openwork right angle weave, which worked really well for some troublesome side-drilled rectangles last year. The trick was to figure out how to get from one set of holes in the Tilas to the next, so that the beadwork could continue smoothly.

My first experiment with the stitch was a total success. I just kept on beading until I had this fun little blue bracelet. I had time to make a second in happy white and yellow, with a little variation in materials and pattern. This time around, I took pictures of the steps. I’ll be sharing all the details behind the technique in a free tutorial next week.

Have you tried Tila beads yet? How well have they blended into your work?

Copyright 2011 Inspirational Beading
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  1. Can't wait for the tutorial! Yippee!! Will it include that button kind of closure? Hope so! Love it, love it all. You do such awesome work!

  2. Beautiful, good work! I haven't tried them yet although I'm dying to!

  3. I haven't tried tila beads yet. I'm pretty loyal to seed beads as well. I love your pieces, though! Perfect for spring/summer.

  4. Thanks ladies! It was really exiting to try out a new idea and have it work out just right.

    The upcoming tutorial will be fore the Tila right angle weave. The buttons are done in circular brick stitch, which you can find under the tutorials tab!

  5. Yay! I thank you for being so generous with your tutorials. Just the other day I bought a tube of Tilas at my local bead shop, with only a vague idea of what I might do with them. I'm hoping your tutorial will give me a little push!

  6. Nice idea, Mortira. Very wearable cuffs.

  7. Don't have any Tilas yet, so I am thinking about trying this with a twist, using 4mm cubes instead.

    1. Cubes would definitely require fewer steps to keep the RAW flowing. I would recommend using 8/o beads instead of 11/o, to get a closer match in the size and texture.

  8. Would love to know how you make the flower buttons for the clasp! Do you have a compilation of your flowers in a tutorial? Would love to buy it. Thanks!

    1. Hi Christine! You can find a tutorial including two types of button clasps and toggles here:


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