Making a Swarovski crystal puffy heart involves bead weaving using a right angle beading technique. The puffy, or 3D, aspect of the design comes from the way the Swarovski crystal beads are grouped together in the bead weaving process. You can make a puffy crystal heart with other types of beads, but they will not have the sparkle like ones made from Swarovski crystals.
The materials for bead weaving a Swarovski crystal puffy heart include beading wire, and both 3 mm and 4 mm beads. Select the Swarovski crystal beads in one or two colors, whichever best suits your design preference. Scissors will cut the thin 26 gauge beading wire. Weaving beads for the puffy design involves passing the beading material through some of the beads more than once. Thin beading wire is a must.
Begin making the puffy heart with a 20-inch strand of beading wire. String four 4 mm Swarovski crystal beads to the center of the wire. Insert the right side end of the wire back through the last Swarovski crystal and pull both wires taut to form a diamond shape. Crossing the wire, adding new beads and threading both wires through one bead are main components of bead weaving. Each time you create a diamond or cross the wire to thread it through a bead, pull both ends taut while keeping them even. This way the beads will nestle against each other. Pulling too tight on the wires can cause the beads to buckle. In this case, relax the wires and smooth the beads so they lay evenly. At this point in the design, the crystal puffy heart consists of four beads in a diamond formation with two wires extending in opposite directions through the top bead of the diamond shape.
Continue to weave the puffy heart by adding two 4 mm Swarovski crystal beads onto the left side wire and one 3 mm bead onto the right side wire. Insert the right side wire through the last 4 mm bead added on the left side wire. Pull the wires taut. Repeat this step five more times. As you weave the beads, notice that the 3 mm beads are on one side of the work, which forms the curve at the top of the heart.
The sides of the heart beneath the curve are created with the same Swarovski bead sequence, two beads on the left side wire and one on the right side wire, then cross the right wire through the last bead added to the left wire. Create the sides of the puffy heart with only 4 mm Swarovski beads so the weaving design will be straight, not curved. Three additional sets of 4 mm Swarovski crystal beads is all that you need to complete one side of the heart. On the last bead set, cross the left side wire through the single bead on the right side wire. This will create the pointed tip of the puffy heart.
Create the other side of the puffy heart by adding two 4mm Swarovski crystal beads to one wire and one 4 mm Swarovski crystal bead to the other. Cross the wire with one bead through the last bead added to the other wire. Repeat this sequence twice more using all 4 mm Swarovski crystal beads. Switch to the 4 mm-3 mm pattern to weave the curve of the puffy heart. Make five sets of 4 mm-3 mm Swarovski crystal beads to complete the top of the heart.
To finish the puffy heart design, add one 4 mm Swarovski crystal bead to one wire and one 3 mm Swarovski crystal bead to the other. Thread both wires through the first bead in the first diamond that you made. Knot the wires together and then feed the excess back through the beadwork.
- Photo Credit beads image by Joy Prescott from Fotolia.com
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