Monday, December 7, 2009

Knit Beaded Christmas Ornament Pattern

After finding this pattern for beaded Christmas ornaments, I was inspired to design my own based on items that I could easily find. I was also hoping to take advantage of the plethora of fingering weight wool I have around my house. Another advantage is that by using large beads (rather than tiny seed beads), I won't have to string as many onto the yarn!

For tips about how to make beaded knitting projects, check out this knitty article.


  • Knitpicks Palette Blue Note Heather (blue with hints of teal and pink)
  • Aqua Purple lined (LT6E62) 6/0 Czech glass beads (24 g tube)
  • Wire Beading Needles
  • Yarn needle for finishing
  • 2.5 inch Styrofoam Ball
  • Size 3 (3.25 mm) double pointed knitting needles.
Gauge: ~9 sts/inch; ~8 rows/inch

First string the beads onto the wool. I strung the entire package onto the wool, but I did not need that many beads for my ornament. Since I do not have a crochet hook small enough to add beads onto the work as I go, it was better to have too many beads strung than not enough.

The Pear-Shaped Beaded Ornament Pattern
Row 1: Cast on 6 sts. Join and knit 1 round.
Row 2: Kfb across (12 sts)
Row 3: Kfb across (24 sts)
Row 4: K1, slip 1 bead (s1b), *K2, s1b* repeat from * until the last stitch, K1. (12 beads)
Row 5: kfb across (48 sts)
Row 6: Repeat row 4 (24 beads)
Row 7: *K1, Kfb* across (72 sts)
Row 8: Repeat row 4 (36 beads)
Row 9: *K2, kfb* across (96 sts)
Row 10: Repeat row 4 (48 beads)
Row 11: K across
Row 12: *K2, s1b* across (48 beads)
Row 13: *K2, K2tog* across (72 sts)
Row 14: Repeat row 4 (36 beads)
Row 15: *K1, K2tog* across (48 sts)
Row 16: Repeat row 4 (24 beads)
Row 17: K2tog across (24 sts)
Row 18: Repeat row 4 (12 beads)
At this point, place your styrofoam ball into the knit sphere. You will need to stretch the knitting out to get it to fit close to the top of the ball. It may be helpful to have toothpicks to anchor the knitting around the ball. We will now be starting the section that will appear more lace-like. When you knit the following rows, pull the stitches tight so you can close the casing around the ball. If you are having difficulty getting the needle in the stitches, increase the number of dpn you're using.
Row 19: k across
Row 20: *K2, S1b* across (12 beads)
Row 21: k across
Row 22: K2tog across (12 sts)
Row 23: K2tog across (6 sts)

Cut yarn, pull though remaining stitches. Weave in loose ends. Using yarn or thread, tie a loop at the top so you can hang it on your tree. Step back and admire your work. Then take a picture and send it to me at

Before stretching the ornament, it looks small on the styrofoam ball.

Total beads used: 254
Total beads remaining on wool: 145

I accidentally ended up creating a pear shaped ornament. In theory, I could have stretched it over the ball completely, but it was so hard to knit around the Styrofoam ball that I added some rows at the top. They are stretched more, and have a lace-like effect that I found pleasing. I was also concerned about running out of beads, but as you can see I only used about 2/3 of the container.

I also learned that the beads are more visible on the WS of this project (I regret that I do not have a photo of this for you). I liked the subtle aspect, but if you want to beads to be sticking out more like dew drops, then change all K's to P's.

My tree, with my beaded ornament and knit snowbuddy.
The beaded ornament is a similar size to glass bobbles you may already own.

Abbreviations used in this pattern:
Kfb - increase by knitting into the front and back of a single stitch.
s1b - slip one bead
K - knit
P - purl
K2tog - decrease by knitting two stitches together

This this pattern was created by ChemKnits for your personal or charity use. This pattern is not to be replicated, sold or redistributed without permission from ChemKnits. © 2009 ChemKnits