I think this is the simplest of the beaded daisy chains and teaches the basics of stitching back through beads to make a pattern. That makes it a great beading stitch for beginner's of all age to learn. It was my first introduction to working with beads - even if I didn't do the stitch quite right back then.
For reference, I re-learned this stitch the right way from the book Indian Bead-Weaving Patterns by Horace R. Goodhue. It's not the easiest bead pattern book to follow, but it is one of the most comprehensive compilations of Native American bead techniques. If you are interested in the book, I recommend you review this article on Native American Technique for Daisy Chain Stitch where I talk about it in more detail.
You can do daisy chain with almost any beads. You will get the most traditional look, i.e. Native American style, from size 11 Preciosa Czech seed beads. That is what I've used for these examples. The rounded shape and slight size irregularity combined with the bright opaque colors are perfect to me. But, don't let that keep you from trying other sizes and types of beads.
Thread your needle with an arms length of beading thread. This is a rare instance where I like to use a doubled thread. I find that Nymo gives a nice supple chain and using a double thread keeps the beads firmly in place without adding stiffness. I use thread conditioner like Thread Magic or beeswax and stretch the thread before I start stitching.
You can start by adding a clasp or clam shell bead tip. For this example, I start by adding a stop bead. Stop beads are temporary and you remove it to add a clasp of your choice later.
To add a stop bead, pick up a bead and stitch back through it, positioning it about 4-6 inches from the tail thread end.
You can tell a stop bead, because it has a loop of thread going around the outside of the bead.
This is the project I am making. A short string of beads, a daisy, and then another short string of beads to form a pattern.
Pick up the number of beads for the 'string' portion of the pattern. I am using five blue beads to start the string, then pick up four beads for the petal (white) and one bead for the center of the daisy (yellow).
Pull the beads down to the stop bead. Put your needle back through the first white petal bead going in the opposite direction.
Pull the beads into a half circle shape, pulling the beads tight and rearranging them as necessary. You have finished half of the beaded daisy flower.
To finish the daisy, pick up three more white petal beads. Stitch through the last petal bead you added, at the top of the flower shape.
Pull the beads tight and adjust to make a pretty daisy.
Repeat the design by picking up another string of beads to separate the daisies, then another four petal beads and a center bead. Stitch back through the bead, pick up three more petal beads, stitch back through the top petal bead, etc.
You can experiment with different sized beads. When the center bead changes, you will need to adjust the number of petal beads.
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