All About Seed Beads


Seed beads come in a wide range of sizes and finishes.

The only seed beads that I carry come from Japan. Japanese seed beads are very uniform and even, each one precision made. You don’t have to throw away (cull) beads because of poor shape, small holes or odd cuts.

Japanese seed beads also have a larger hole size than other beads, and come in a wide range of colours, finishes and sizes.

These are the perfect bead for your beadwork!

Shapes of Seed Beads:

Delica beads
One of the most popular seed bead shapes is the cylinder bead, and the brand that I carry is called Delica beads, from the Miyuki Factory.

Delica beads are like small cylinders, with straight sides, and large round holes. They fit together very well in stitches such as peyote stitch, brick stitch and herringbone.

Originally Delica beads were only available in size 11 (sometimes referred to as size 12, but it’s the same bead!) In recent years, Delica beads have become available in size 15, size 10 and size 8, although not all colours are in these sizes.

Round seed beads
These seed beads are actually more donut shaped, and are available in size 15, size 11 and size 8 and size 6. If you see a beading pattern calling for size 10 seed beads, those would be Czech beads, you can use a size 11 in place of those.

Cut Beads
Both round beads and Delica beads are available in “cuts” which means that the round surface has multiple cuts, or facets.

Cube beads
A cube bead is just as it sounds, the bead has four sides like a cube, but with a round hole.

Triangle Beads
Triangle beads are also a similar format to round beads, but they have three sides with the hole in the middle.

Bugle Beads
Bugle beads are longer tube-shaped beads, and they are available in various lengths for varying purposes and effects.

Teardrop Beads
Teardrop beads are small droplet shapes, or egg shapes with the hole at the small end. Miyuki call their teardrop beads Fringe beads and Magatamas.

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