The base of your beaded patch can be cut out of felt (my first choice) or Ultrasuede or any fabric. Some even use buckram as the base. I would use a material that does not ravel much. A nylon tricot material can also be used if you want a flexible patch. You can also use non-woven interfacing, in black or white as the backing for your patch.
Cut out the base according to your design with 1/2 to 3/4 inch along the margin (this depends on how big the design is)
You need a base material to keep the patch stiff if you are using felt or fabric. Cut out a faux leather or original leather or buckram or stiff interfacing or stiff felt itself in the dimension of the design – ie without the extra allowance.
Now for backing for your patch – Cut another piece of felt or fabric that will be the same as the stiff fabric. If it is a fraying fabric you will need extra allowance to tuck inside.
You also need beads for your design and beading needle (long thin needle that will pass through the beads) and suitable thread – nylon preferably because it is strong.
Start beading on the base fabric inside the design parameters.
If you are using a similar colored base as your beads it will be ok even if the beading is not densely done. But if the base is a white-colored fabric or buckram which is a tan color you will have to ensure that the beading is done densely to cover the whole area.
Beading on large areas is very time-consuming if you are using tiny seed beads. You have to set aside some dedicated beading time if you want large designs. Make small patches, if it is your first time.
First, outline the designs with a backstitch with the beads and then fill the area inside. Or make medallion-like stitches going around the center bead as I have done.
For this first sew the first bead at the center of the fabric circle. After this begin the circle around this bead. String some 5 to 6 beads on your needle and then circle it around the center bead – remove or add according to the size of your beads. Couch stitch the bead string in 2 or 3 places to keep them stay in place. Do this again and again till the whole design is complete.
You can add rhinestones, sequins, etc to your beadwork for extra sparkle.
To make the base for the beaded patch follow the steps given below.
After the beading is done, Keep the stiff material on the back of your beaded piece. Use a needle and thread and make a running stitch along the outer perimeter of the beaded fabric.
If the material is buckram, clip the allowance and turn to the back and glue in place.
Pull the stitch to stretch the completed design on the board.
Use the other remaining felt/fabric to cover the back.
Hand sew in place.
You can do edge beading as a final step.
You can embroider 3-d flowers on your beaded patch or make wire 3-d bead flowers and attach to the base.
To make the 3-d flowers with wire follow the tutorial given below:.
Cut out 8 inches of thin wire. Fold the top as in the picture below. String 3 beads on it. Twist the wire under the beads as in the picture.
String about 5 beads on the wire.
Bring it up and twist it there.
Do the same for the other side too.
Make more like the above. Fold the top curl to the back. This makes one petal. Make 2 more for one flower.
Twist the wires together to form one flower. Make as many flowers as you want for the patch.
Make as many flowers are you want.
Make your base or use a stiff material in itself as the base.
Related post : Bead embroidery flower motifs.