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Dragon's treasure pendant

Safeguard a favorite bead, coin, or button with a protective dragon worked in four stitching techniques
Dragons treasure pendant key


Blue dragon 1 3⁄4 in. (4.4 cm)

  • 1 18 mm flat round bead (blue shell; craft and hobby stores)
  • 5 3 x 10 mm dagger beads (Czech, black with AB peacock/grating pattern;
  • 2 3 mm round fire-polished beads (Czech, full-coated metallic silver)
  • 2 g 8/0 seed beads (Miyuki 1827, sparkle amethyst-lined light blue)11/0 seed beads 
    • 3 g color A (Miyuki 28, silver-lined cornflower blue)
    • 1 g color B (Miyuki 1020, silver-lined cobalt AB)
    • 2 color C (Miyuki 401F, matte black)
  • 15/0 seed beads
    • 1 g color D (Miyuki 339, blue-lined aqua AB)
    • 9 color E (Miyuki 458, metallic brown iris)
  • Fireline, 6 lb. test
  • beading needles, #12
  • plastic wrap (optional)

Gray/green dragon colors

  • 20 mm coin (Euro 10 cent piece)
  • 3 x 10 mm dagger beads (Czech, olivine; 
  • 3 mm round fire-polished beads (Czech, black)
  • 8/0 seed beads (SB0989, silver-lined matte greenish blue;
  • 11/0 seed beads 
    • color A (Miyuki 2091, matte metallic tarnished silver)
    • color B (Miyuki 2031, matte metallic sage green luster)
    • color C (Miyuki 457L, metallic light bronze)
  • 15/0 seed beads
    • color D (T15-378C, Montana color-lined metallic antique gold;
    • color E (Miyuki 1522, sparkle honey beige-lined crystal)

Purple dragon colors

  • 22 mm vintage button
  • 3 x 10 mm dagger beads (Czech, amethyst;
  • 3 mm round fire-polished beads (Czech, black)
  • 8/0 seed beads (Toho 704, matte Andromeda)
  • 11/0 seed beads
    • color A (Toho 166F, matte transparent light amethyst AB)
    • color B (Toho 704, matte Andromeda)
    • color C (Miyuki 457L, metallic light bronze;
  • 15/0 seed beads
    • color D (SB3341, matte transparent light amethyst AB)
    • color E (Miyuki 1522, sparkle honey beige-lined crystal)


The ideal focal for this piece is an 18–22 mm flat round bead, coin, or button. The focal should be between 1.5 and 3 mm thick; if thinner, you may be able to layer two focals. If your focal has a decoration on it, be aware that the outer edge of the focal will be obscured by the bezel. If using a button, a shank button is an excellent choice because it doesn’t have thread holes at the center. On the other hand, thread holes give you the option of attaching an embellishment, like beads or chains.

Choose your color A 11/0 seed beads to coordinate with the color D 15/0s, as these will create the bezel/lower half of the dragon body. Try to match your color B 11/0 seed beads to the 8/0s; together they will form a continuous line of color from the snout of the dragon to its tail. The two color C 11/0 seed beads will be for the nostrils, and the color E 15/0s will make the tongue.

Dragons treasure pendant f1
Figure 1
Dragons treasure pendant f2
Figure 2


1. On 2 yd. (1.8 m) of thread, pick up four color A 11/0 seed beads. Tie the beads into a ring with a square knot, leaving a 6-in. (15 cm) tail, and sew through the first three A 11/0s again to exit opposite the tail. This ring will count as the first stitch of right-angle weave (RAW).

2. Using A 11/0s, work in flat RAW until the beadwork is long enough to wrap around the edge of your focal. Leave just enough space between the first and last stitches to work a joining stitch.

3. Remove the focal from the bezel. Making sure the beadwork isn’t twisted, work a joining stitch: Pick up an 11/0, and sew through the end 11/0 in the first RAW stitch. Pick up an 11/0, and sew through the end 11/0 in the last RAW stitch (FIGURE 1, a–b). Retrace the thread path of the join, and exit an A 11/0 along one edge (b–c).

4. Working in tubular peyote stitch, pick up an A 11/0, and sew through the next edge A 11/0 (FIGURE 2, a–b). Repeat this stitch to complete the round, and step up through the first A 11/0 added in this round (b–c).
Dragons treasure pendant f3
Figure 3
Dragons treasure pendant a
Photo a

5. Work in tubular peyote stitch using a tight tension to work two rounds using color D 15/0 seed beads (FIGURE 3).

6. Sew through the beadwork to exit an A 11/0 along the other edge of the RAW strip. Holding the focal inside the bezel, work as in steps 4–5 to complete the other side of the bezel. End the tail but not the working thread.


1. Decide which side of the focal you would like to have face forward. Sew through the beadwork to exit an A 11/0 along the edge of the original RAW strip, positioning your thread to stitch clockwise around the front of the bezel. 

NOTE:  If your focal has a scene or decoration requiring proper orientation, be sure to position your thread so that the A 11/0s you will add in step 2 will be centered at the top of the decoration.

2. Pick up an A 11/0, and sew through the next edge A 11/0 in the RAW strip. The new A 11/0 will sit on top of the bezel. Repeat this stitch for a total of 11 A 11/0s (PHOTO A).

Dragons treasure pendant f4
Figure 4
Dragons treasure pendant f5
Figure 5
Dragons treasure pendant f6
Figure 6

3. Work rows of peyote stitch as follows:

Row 1: Pick up an A 11/0, and sew back through the last A 11/0 added in the previous step (FIGURE 4, a–b). Using A 11/0s and tight tension, work ten more stitches off of the remaining 11/0s added in the previous step (b–c).

Row 2: Turn, and work 11 stitches using A 11/0s (FIGURE 5, a–b).

Row 3: Work 11 stitches using 8/0 seed beads (b–c).

Row 4: Work 11 stitches, alternating an 8/0 and a 3 x 10 mm dagger bead. End with an 8/0 (c–d). 

4. Flip the bezel to work on the back side. Sew counterclockwise around the bezel to exit the 11/0 in the original RAW strip that is directly opposite the one you exited in step 1. This ensures that both halves of the dragon body will match up.

5. Work as in step 2 and then work rows 1–3  of step 3 on this side of the bezel. 

6. If desired, cut a small piece of plastic wrap, and roll it to fit inside the two halves of the dragon body. Zip up the two halves of the body, and retrace the thread path twice.

7. Hold the beadwork so you are looking down through the body, with the front of the focal facing to the left. On this end of the body, you should have five thread bridges:

  • one between the bezel and the left A 11/0 (FIGURE 6, a–b)
  • one between the left A 11/0 and the left 8/0 (c–d)
  • one between the left and right 8/0s (e–f)
  • one between the right 8/0 and the right A 11/0 (g–h)
  • one between the right A 11/0 and the bezel (i–j)

These thread bridges should already be in place as a result of stitching the body and zipping the halves. However, if any thread bridges are missing, sew through the beadwork as necessary to create them. Exit the right 8/0, between the 8/0 and the 11/0, on this end.

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