Beginner Course

Lesson Four: Continuous Wraparound Loops

TERMS TO REMEMBER:

  • Wraparound Loops
  • CWL
  • Bottom Wire
  • Pointed Bottom (PB)
  • Round Bottom (RB)

Before you can make Continuous Wraparound Loops, you will need to know Continuous Loops from Lesson Two.  

Continuous Wraparound Loops are sometimes abbreviated in French Beading patterns as CWL

Just like Crossover Loops, Wraparound loops begin with a Continuous Loop. But unlike Crossover Loops, the rows of beads are wrapped around the outside of the starting loop, instead of over the front. 

With Continuous Wraparound Loops, we start to see how wrapping at different angles can affect the shape of our petals. Wrapping at the Bottom Wire – or the wire below the loop – at a 45 degree angle will produce a Pointed Bottom (PB). Wrapping at the Bottom Wire at a 90 degree angle will produce a Round Bottom (RB). 

This is what a sample pattern may look like. Keep in mind that other designers may format their patterns differently than me. But they should all contain the same information. 

Make 1: 5x 3 row CWL using 11 beads for the starting loop, PB. 

Translation: You will make one unit. The unit will have 5 Continuous Wraparound Loop petals. Each petal will have 3 rows of beads. The starting loop for each petal should be made of 11 beads. Each petal should have a pointed bottom – wrap at a 45 degree angle.  

For this exercise use 26 or 24 gauge (0.4 – 0.5 mm) copper core wire and approximately 5 grams of size 11/0 beads. 

  1. String all of the beads onto the wire. 
  2. Leave a 2 inch (5 cm) tail of wire before making an 11 bead loop. (Photo 1) Only twist below the loop one full rotation. Twisting more in CWL will leave more exposed wires. 
  3. Feed more beads down the working wire and wrap them around the outer edge of the starting loop. Keep this row of beads directly beside the starting loop. If they are too far apart the petals will have visible gaps between rows. If they are too close, the rows of beads will bunch up on top of each other. Measure the beads needed to reach the Bottom Wire. Cross the working wire over the front of the Bottom Wire, creating a 45 degree angle (Photo 2).
  4.  Wrap the working wire around the bottom wire. As you cross back over the front of the bottom wire, angle the working wire upward to complete the point (Photo 3).
french beading tutorial - continuous wraparound loops
PHOTO 1
french beading tutorial - continuous wraparound loops
PHOTO 2
french beading tutorial - continuous wraparound loops
PHOTO 3

5. Feed more beads down the Working Wire from the spool. Wrap another row of beads around the outer edge of the previous row. Wrap at the Bottom Wire at a 45 degree angle to make a Pointed Bottom. The petal now has all three rows of beads. To secure the working wire, wrap it tightly around the bottom wire below the petal twice, keeping the wraps close together. (Photo 4). 

6. To begin the second petal you will need to leave a length of bare wire below the starting loop. This will be the second petal’s bottom wire. The length should be the same length as the bottom wire in the first petal, plus a tiny bit extra. (Photo 5). 

TIP: Notice that I’ve turned the second petal at a 90 degree angle from the first petal. This keeps the bottom wire straight while wrapping on rows of beads, which in turn makes it easier to measure out the correct amount of beads for each row, and prevents a lopsided petal. 

 

french beading tutorial - continuous wraparound loops
PHOTO 4
french beading tutorial - continuous wraparound loops
PHOTO 5

7. Finish the second petal with two more rows of beads, remembering to wrap at a 45 degree angle to make a pointed bottom. (Photo 6)

8. Repeat the whole process until you have 5 total petals. (Photo 7)

french beading tutorial - continuous wraparound loops
PHOTO 6
french beading tutorial - continuous wraparound loops
PHOTO 7

9. To close the unit, cross the working wire over the top of the first petal and wrap around it once. (Photo 8)

10. Cut the working wire from the spool and twist it into the tail wire on the underside of the unit. (Photo 9)

french beading tutorial - continuous wraparound loops
PHOTO 8
french beading tutorial - continuous wraparound loops
PHOTO 9

Photo 10 shows the finished petal unit. 

Just like with the Continuous Loops and Crossover Loops, if a petal unit has a larger number of petals, twisting the tail and working wire over to the side will make it harder to center the unit on the flower’s stem wire. To center the wire, use the same method as the CL and CCL. After looping the working wire around the first petal to close the unit, cross it over the underside of the unit and loop it around a petal on the opposite side of the unit. Then bring both wires together in the center and twist them. 

PHOTO 10

To make a round bottom (RB), there is just one simple change to the angle of the wraps. Instead of crossing over the bottom wire at a 45 degree angle, cross over at a 90 degree angle as shown in Photo 11

Not all patterns will note whether to use a Round Bottom or Pointed Bottom. I personally find that with such small petals, it doesn’t make a great deal of difference. If you compare Photo 12 below with the pointed petals above you’ll notice that they look almost the same. But the difference does become more noticeable when making larger petals with Continuous Wraparound Loops. 

french beading tutorial - continuous wraparound loops
PHOTO 11
french beading tutorial - continuous wraparound loops
PHOTO 12

Practice making Continuous Wraparound Loops until you feel comfortable with them. Then move on to Lesson Five: Fringe

© 2018 Lauren Harpster / Bead & Blossom. The images and written instructions are copyright protected. This tutorial may not be printed and distributed for personal gain or teaching classes, but feel free to print a copy for personal use. The images may not be uploaded onto other websites. If you would like to share the tutorial, please do so with a link! 

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