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How To Make Beautiful Braid-and-Bead Embroidered Jewellery and Accessories
Donatella Ciotti

Search Press
20 April 2017/ ISBN 9781782214809
How-To Books/Craft

Reviewed by Rachel A Hyde


The subtitle says it all – use a particular type of braid to make some stunning jewelry and accessories. This is a surprisingly easy to master craft that yields some very professional and high-end appearing results while not costing much money. A winning combination!

It is fun to do as well, the ideal thing to do while relaxing in front of the TV once you have the basics right. I learned from another book as this one was not available, but out of the books around this is the best one for beginners. All the basic skills are in here with some clear photographic steps and plenty of captions. As with many crafts, some of the techniques would not be easy to understand if there were not enough steps, but in here no vital stages are omitted. Learn how to prepare the cord, use glue, add beads, sew around a cabochon, make different shapes like leaves and spirals, and even use ribbon. There are plenty of projects to tackle, from simple buttons through to bracelets, rings and earrings. I was pleased to see my own favorite projects to make are well represented, hair decorations such as headbands and combs. There is even a hat brooch and a lampshade decoration, showing how versatile soutache can be. As well as beads and stones, the author also uses some more unusual materials, such as brightly colored rubber tubing. The amazing jewelry made with this are my favorite items in the book. Some projects are shown in more than one colorway, and at the back is a gallery of more advanced work to whet the appetite and show what soutache is capable of once you get more proficient. My only complaint is that in a book squarely aimed at the beginner, there is a very complex and advanced piece of work on the cover which is not featured as a project. I would dearly love to see instructions for this, but they are not there -- a beginner would just be overwhelmed. But maybe it is there to showcase the immense possibilities that this inexpensive and enjoyable craft has for anybody who masters it.

If you cannot find a good range of jewelry materials locally visit for a list of suppliers.

Large range of soutache cord plus other supplies available at

Rubber tubing available from
UK Reviewer: Rachel Hyde's work can be found in The Bead Magazine, Making Jewellery and Craftsuprint.
Reviewed 2017