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Egyptian scarab necklace

Combine ancient Egyptian mythology with 21st-century fashion in a contemporary necklace spotlighting the Egyptian symbol for rebirth, the scarab beetle.


Eggplant necklace 17 1⁄4 in. (43.8 cm)

  • 1 34 x 23 mm polymer clay scarab cabochon (purple, Marian Hertzog;
  • 1 18 x 13 mm magnesite cabochon (purple)
  • 31 4 mm fire-polished beads (purple AB)
  • 3 g 8/0 cylinder seed beads (Miyuki DBL1852, Duracoat galvanized pewter)
  • 9 g 8/0 seed beads (Miyuki 401FR, matte black AB)
  • 6 g 11/0 seed beads (Miyuki 466, metallic  dark raspberry gold luster)
  • 2 g 15/0 seed beads (Miyuki 4222, Duracoat galvanized pewter)
  • shredded leather choker (plum purple;
  • nylon beading thread, size D, or Fireline 6 lb. test
  • beading needles, #10
  • 6 x 2 1⁄2-in. (15 x 6.4 cm) piece of beading foundation
  • 4 x 2 1⁄2-in. (10 x 6.4 cm) piece of Ultrasuede (coffee bean)
  • E6000 adhesive
  • scissors
Seafoam necklace colors
  • polymer clay scarab cabochon (green, Marian Hertzog;
  • moss agate cabochon
  • 25 3 mm fire-polished beads (teal AB)
  • 8/0 cylinder seed beads (Miyuki DBL 1846, Duracoat galvanized dark sea foam)
  • 8/0 seed beads (Miyuki 2008, matte metallic patina iris)
  • 11/0 seed beads (Miyuki 351, peach lined aqua luster)
  • 15/0 seed beads (Miyuki 4216, Duracoat galvanized dark sea foam)
  • shredded leather choker (olive green;
  • Ultrasuede (Montauk)



Egyptian scarab necklace a
Photo a

1. Cut a 31⁄2 x 21⁄2-in. (8.9 x 6.4 cm) rectangle and a 21⁄2-in. (6.4 cm) square of beading foundation. Apply a thin coat of E6000 to the back of the scarab and gemstone cabochons, and center the scarab cab on the larger piece of foundation and the gemstone cab on the smaller piece, leaving a 3⁄4-in. (1.9 cm)space around each cab. Allow the glue to dry, and set the gemstone cab aside.

2. Tie an overhand knot at the end of 1 yd. (.9 m) of thread. Sew up through the back of the foundation, exiting near the outer edge of the scarab cab. Work in beaded backstitch around the scarab cab (photo a): Pick up two 11/0 seed beads for each stitch, line them up next to the cab, and sew back through the foundation. Sew up between the two beads and through the second bead just added. End with an even number of beads, and sew through the first 11/0 in the round, the foundation, and back up through the foundation and next 11/0.

Egyptian scarab necklace b
Photo b

3. Using 11/0s, work a round of tubular peyote stitch off the beaded backstitch (photo b) and step up. Work four additional rounds. Work a final round using 15/0 seed beads, and tighten the thread to secure the cab. Exit the beadwork by sewing diagonally down through the beads and the foundation. Make a half-hitch knot, and end the thread.

4. Tie an overhand knot at the end of 1 yd. (.9 m) of thread, and sew up through the foundation next to the round of 11/0s. Picking up two 8/0 seed beads per stitch, work a round of beaded backstitch. Sew through the first 8/0 added in the round, and exit through the back of the foundation. Make a half-hitch knot, and end the thread.

Egyptian scarab necklace c
Photo c

5. Using 8/0 cylinder beads, work as in step 4 to work beaded backstitch along the edge of 8/0 seed beads (photo c). Carefully trim the foundation close to the beads, being careful not to cut any threads.

Egyptian scarab necklace d
Photo d

6. Repeat steps 1–5 with the gemstone cabochon, except in step 3, work only two rounds of peyote with 11/0s before adding the final round of 15/0s.

7. Apply glue to the back of the beaded cabs, and place each cab on the Ultra-suede (photo d). Allow the glue to dry, and trim the Ultrasuede close to the foundation for each cab.

8. Tie an overhand knot at the end of 1 yd. (.9 m) of thread, and trim the tail. Sew between the scarab cab’s found-ation and Ultrasuede exiting the frontof the foundation about 1 mm from the edge, hiding the knot between the two layers.

Egyptian scarab necklace e
Photo e
Egyptian scarab necklace f
Photo f

9. Work a brick stitch edging: Pick up two 8/0 seed beads, sew up through both foundation layers one bead’s width away from where the thread is exiting, and continue back through the second bead just added (photo e). For each subsequent stitch, pick up an 8/0 seed bead, sew up through both layers one bead’s width away from where the thread is exiting, and continue through the new bead just added (photo f). Repeat this stitch around the perimeter. After adding the final bead, sew down through the first bead in the edging, through the foundation and Ultrasuede, and back through the first bead again. End the working thread in the edging beads.

10. Repeat steps 8–9 with the gemstone cabochon.

For complete project instructions, click here to download & print this PDF
If using white beading foundation, color the edge with a marker so it blendswith the Ultrasuede.

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