Lesson Three: Continuous Crossover Loops
TERMS TO REMEMBER:
- Cross-Over Loops
- Starting Loop
Before you can make Crossover Loops, you will need to know the Continuous Loop Technique from Lesson Two.
Cross-Over Loops (which can sometimes be abbreviated as CCL) is usually continuous, but sometimes they are used individually for buds or stamen.
The most common form of Cross-Over has 4 rows – or two loops – of beads. The first loop is the starting loop, and the second loop of beads crosses over the front of the starting loop. A pattern that uses Continuous Crossover Loops will look something like this:
Make 1: 7x CCL using 24 beads for the starting loop.
Translation: Make one unit. Each unit will have seven Continuous Cross-Over Loops. The starting loop (the first loop that will form the base of the petals) for each petal will be made of 24 beads. Notice that a bead count is not given for the second loop that crosses over the first. This is because the exact number of beads may vary by brand, manufacturing lot, or due to individual differences in technique from one artist to another.
For this exercise, use 26 or 24 gauge wire and approximately 4 grams of beads. Follow the sample pattern above. I am using a non-matching wire to make the wire paths more visible.
- String all of the seed beads onto the wire.
- Leave a small tail wire, then form a Loop using 24 beads. Twist the wires only one or two full rotations below the loop. More twists here will leave extra wire bulk that is harder to conceal in Crossover Loops. Mold the starting loop so it is long and thin, with only a little empty space in the middle (Photo 1).
- Feed more beads from the spool and bring the wire over the front of the starting loop. Measure out the beads needed to reach the top center of the starting loop. This row of beads should be is even with, or slightly above the base of the starting loop. If the beads extend below the starting loop, it will be harder to shape the finished petals, and it will be less attractive. Likewise, the top of this row of beads should be even with, or slightly below the top center of the starting loop. If they extend above the loop the wire will not be held securely between beads. (Photo 2).
- Fold a bare section of wire over the top of the starting loop, making sure the wire fits snugly between two beads in the center of the loop (Photo 3).
5. Keep tension on the wire so it doesn’t slip out of place or loosen, and so gaps don’t form between the beads. Fold the wire over the back of the starting loop (Photo 4).
6. Feed more beads from the spool and fold them over the back of the starting loop. The beads should be pushed all the way against the top center of the starting loop. Measure out the beads needed to reach the base. They should not extend below the starting loop (Photo 5).
7. Tie off the working wire by wrapping it twice around the bottom wire just below the starting loop. Keep the wraps tight and close together. (Photo 6)
8. Leave a small space in the wire, then form the starting loop for the second petal using 24 beads (Photo 7).
9. Repeat steps 3-8 until you have seven petals total (Photo 8).
10. Gently flatten the rows of beads in the petals so they lay side-by-side by pressing them between your thumb and forefinger. Pliers can be used for this step if necessary, but be very careful that you don’t crush any beads.
11. Close the unit the same way as a Continuous Loop – by wrapping the Working Wire around the first petal (Photo 9) and bringing it to the underside of the petal.
12. Notice that just like with the larger CL unit, our two wires are off to the side of the unit (Photo 10), which will make it harder to center the unit on a flower stem wire. To center the wires, cross the working wire over the bottom of the unit and loop it around one of the petals on the opposite side. (Photo 11).
13. Bring the tail and working wires together in the center beneath the unit and twist them together to make the unit stem wire. (Photo 12)
Photo 13 shows the finished CCL unit.
© 2018 Lauren Harpster of Bead and Blossom. This tutorial, the written instructions, and photographs are copyright protected. Do not upload them onto any other websites or print them for personal gain. If you wish to share this tutorial, please do so with a link.