The Bead Doctor Tutorial – Shamballa Bracelet

Bang on-trend and steeped in history, Shamballa bracelets are hot, hot, hot! Gemma shows how to make these gorgeous accessories

  • Bead Doctor Tutorial - Shamballa style Bracelet Step 1: Gather your materials

    Step 1: Gather materials

    Find a list of everything you will need below.

    Pause the steps at any time by mousing over the slideshow and clicking the pause button. Click the pause button again to continue.

    Use the left-right arrows or slide numbers to navigate.

  • Bead Doctor Tutorial - Shamballa style Bracelet Step 2: Cut your cord and pin

    Step 2: Cut cord and pin

    Cut two 60cm lengths of cord (one of each colour) and one 120cm of red cord.

    Pin one end of the black cord to a bead mat by tying a small knot in the end of the cord to a brooch bar or safety pin (or you can pin it to the knee of your trousers)

  • Bead Doctor Tutorial - Shamballa style Bracelet Step 3: Tie knotting cord

    Step 3: Tie knotting cord

    Tie on your long length (the knotting cord) 20cm along the pinned cord.

    Make sure each side of the long length is equal.

    The centre cord is called the lazy cord.

  • Bead Doctor Tutorial - Shamballa style Bracelet Step 4: Begin to knot

    Step 4: Begin to knot

    Place the left hand cord over the lazy cord and underneath the right hand cord.

  • Bead Doctor Tutorial - Shamballa style Bracelet Step 5: Complete the knot

    Step 5: Complete knot

    Take the right hand cord behind the lazy cord and through the left hand loop. Pull tight.

  • Bead Doctor Tutorial - Shamballa style Bracelet Step 6: Continue knots

    Step 6: Continue knots

    Repeat steps 4 and 5 but reverse left and right, i.e. Place the right hand cord over the lazy cord and under the left hand cord. Take the left hand cord behind the lazy cord and through the right hand loop. Pull tight.

    Repeat to the desired length of knots, remembering to alternate between left and right. Add a bead and continue knotting.

  • Bead Doctor Tutorial - Shamballa style Bracelet Step 7: Finish the body

    Step 7: Finish the body

    Continue knotting and adding beads until your bracelet is the required length.

    To finish, add a dab of glue on each side where you have left over knotting cord.

    Trim the excess when the glue is dry.

    Leave the lazy cord.

  • Bead Doctor Tutorial - Shamballa style Bracelet Step 8: Make the closure

    Step 8: Make closure

    Overlap your ends of the lazy cord.

    Tie on the remaining 60cm cord in the same way as before and make around fourteen knots.

    Glue and trim the excess of this knotting cord. Be careful as the lazy cords need to slide to adjust the bracelet.

  • Bead Doctor Tutorial - Shamballa style Bracelet Step 9: Finish off

    Step 9: Finish off

    Thread a bead onto each end of the lazy cord.

    Knot to keep the bead in place, add a dab of glue and trim the excess when the glue is dry.

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Greetings from the Bead Doctor!


A very happy Bead Doctor!

Well the decorations are down, the last of the chocolates are gone and the New Year’s resolutions are broken. I have really been trying to be good by dragging myself to Boot camp at the crack of dawn but, in the grim dark mornings, it is just so tempting to sit with a steamy cup of coffee and a good mag. Anyway it is good for research (at least that is my excuse!)

As I have been trawling through the glossies, there is one trend that keeps appearing and that is Shamballa bracelets. We recently started stocking a range of Pave Rhinestone Beads at Beads Unlimited. They are deliciously sparkly and perfect for the job, so I thought I’d give it a go.

If you fancy making a Shamballa bracelet here is my tutorial, complete with links to all the materials in case you are missing any ingredients.

Giving it away

If you would like to try your hand, you could win all the materials needed to make my bracelet. All you need to do is tell us what tutorials you would like to see on Bead Barmy in the comments box below.

Please post by midnight Sunday 19th February 2012. One lucky beader will win this project. The winner will be contacted by email and asked for their postal address. Good luck everyone!

Materials you will need

To add all the materials needed for this project, simply click the button below to add it to your basket. Or, if you are just short of one or two bits, click on the individual items.*

*You will also need: Cord nippers (PRNPR) – Not Included

More ideas


One basic technique, endless style.

Once you have learnt this basic technique why not try using different coloured cord and beads for a whole range of styles?

Or why not make a knotted necklace? Try saying that after a glass of wine or two!

Macramé can be used to great effect for household bits and bobs such as plant holders. Jo, who writes the joblogsit articles once made a macramé deckchair. Apparently it looked great but wasn’t the most comfortable of seats!

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  1. Gill Colling says:

    Some bead weaving (maybe the basic stitches: square stitch, right angle weave, spiral, flat spiral etc). Maybe who each stitch + a simple project?

  2. Gill Colling says:

    I should add all the above stitches I can do but it would be great to send people to BB when they ask how to!!!

  3. Helen says:

    Different techniques for a bead loom (as I got one recently and have been practising).

    Easy guide to wire working as I’ve seen some amazing patterns on the internet that I’d love to try and reproduce.

    Ooh and maybe some themed jewellery for things like St George’s, St David’s, St Andrew’s and St Patrick’s Day’s?

    Oh and Hallowe’en ideas. :)

  4. Inessa says:

    Thank you for this project.

    Any crochet beaded jewellery project would be nice to see.

  5. Rachael says:

    Actually agree with all the above! Would also like to see ideas for chain maille (think I have the name right!), as have seen some lovely examples of this recently and thinking of making it my next project. :)

  6. Rachael says:

    Oh and Valentines ideas but to give to men would be great! :)

  7. Lisa says:

    Jewellery Ideas for men, have I find most jewellery pieces are aim at women, and would love to make something for my boyfriend.

    Also crochet jewellery, paper jewellery, odd bits and pieces to make charms out of.

  8. Thanks for all your comments so far, we’ll be looking into them and seeing what we can do!
    In the meantime, Rachael, have you seen this post from last year from the Bead Doctor on a chain maille technique?

  9. Sheila says:

    Would be good to have a tutorial on making your own wire components (fastners,earwires etc) and on using a wire jig.

  10. Elizabeth Goodwin says:

    Would love to see tutorials on chainmaille. (loving the shamballa bracelets)

  11. Jane says:

    What a treat to find this in my in box! Are you guys telepathic? It was just what I was looking for. Thank you


  12. That’s us Jane! We just new it!

  13. del says:

    would like to see basic stiches on different materials. Plus perhaps belts and animals.

  14. I’d love to see how to make some mixed media jewellery using Patera findings

  15. Trish says:

    Very happy, been looking for instructions on how do these knots, but didn’t know what they were called. Thanks.

  16. Leanne says:

    I can’t wait to try and make one of these – everybody seems to be wearing them at the moment!!

  17. Barbara says:

    Great Shamballa bracelet pattern, I was wondering where to get one from. Am looking forward to trying it. Would like to see a bead weaving pattern to incorporate them

  18. Ioanna says:

    Ideas for Valentine projects -and wire wrapping, please!!

  19. DESPINA says:

    I’d love to see tutorials for wire wrapping, chainmaille and ideas for charm bracelets out of the ordinary!!

  20. Hi Despina and Ioanna, Have you seen our wire wrapped ring tutorial at Beads Unlimited? It may be something you’d find of use.

  21. Karen says:

    It’d be great to see how to make some beaded charms and pendants using small beads and seed beads e.g. little flowers and animal trinkets (instead of using polymer clay).

    They could then be used in future projects for brooches, charm bracelets, bag charms, etc.

  22. Melinda   Singer says:

    I’d like to see crochet work with beading!

  23. Ingemar   Hulthage says:

    Since I haven’t been able to find this item already made in stores, I’d like to see how to make those eyeglasses strings…you know the kind ‘grannies” wear, the long ones, from which your eyeglasses hang.

  24. We had a project for spec chains a long time ago. I’ll have a dig about for the project sheet and see if I can find one for you Ingemar.

  25. Angelic Jones says:

    Great tutorial. A tutorial on how to make beaded beads/ larger beads out of seed beads or crystals would be great. It would be nice to be able to make my own beads to weave into the Shamballa bracelet.

  26. Valerie Read says:

    Really good instructions. Would like information on making bling rings.

    Many thanks
    Val Read

  27. kirsty rookyard says:

    Hi I’m new to this craft and i’m attempting the shamballa bracelet, but not sure what type of glue to use? Other than that the tutorial was so easy to follow

    many thanks

  28. Hello Kirsty, Thanks for pointing this out to me. As you may have seen, I have now updates the post. I suggest you use a dab of PVA glue or a good craft glue available from any Art and Craft shop.

  29. Orla Allen says:

    I’ve been looking for a tutorial on Shamballa bracelets for a while, so thank you for this. I’m just off to try it now :)

  30. Sarah Mark says:

    I would love to see some chainmaille and more choker designs :)

  31. For all of you looking for chain maille tutorials, have you seen this post from a while back?

  32. I would love to see a tutorial on bag charms, maybe with the new gorgeous steampunk style bits and bobs you have in stock? Or any tutorial involving the steampunk style :)

  33. Here’s a simple steampunk necklace.

    We have done bag charm projects in the past on Beads Unlimited. I’ll have a root round and see what I can find.

  34. Rachael says:

    Many thanks for the chain maille projects, very helpful. :)

  35. Vicki Hallatt says:

    Can’t wait to have a go at this! Would love to see some wire crochet tutorials.

  36. Joyce mckenzie says:

    Beginners wire working

  37. Bernadette says:

    I’d like to see some bead weaving techniques, if possible? With those little blighters that always seem to run away and land all over the floor….(seed beads, toho etc) Have recently saw some beautiful pieces of artwork using them, that amaze me :)

  38. Orla Allen says:

    Thanks for this tutorial it was really easy to follow :)

  39. Thanks Orla, Glad you found it useful.

  40. Hi Joyce, please keep an eye on this site. We have a wire working project coming in the next couple of weeks.
    We also have a video on YouTube that shows you all the different wires and what they are best for. Here’s the link, if you’d like to take a look.

  41. We’ll have to sort out some bead weaving projects. We used to do a lot and then it went off trend but it seems to be making a comeback.

  42. Gill says:

    We love this shambala tutorial, anything to do with friendship (Knotted) bracelets would be great x

  43. Eileen Freeman says:

    It would be nice to be shown something out of the ordinary which can be made with either silver plated wire or other colours of wire. Something which could be a pendant or a hair slide. In a simple design as I find most are too fussy.

  44. Liz Glen says:

    Hi I’ve seen the Shamballa bracelets around and am looking forward to trying one myself. Ideas for bride and bridesmaid hair clips/combs would be useful as I’ve been volunteered to do them!!!

  45. chloe says:

    maybe a finger rings would be wonderful to see but i love Shamballa bracelet and can not wait to see it

  46. Chrissi says:

    Loved the tutorial and as well as making the bracelet with any beads I particularly like it will enable me to repair a Chinese jade bracelet I had, which has fallen apart and I was very fond of

  47. Tanya Lawrence says:

    What a great giveaway! and this is actually the tutorial that I have been looking for to try!…but I would also like to try to wire crochet! Thank you! :)

  48. Lynne Shorey says:

    I love to see a tut’ on bead weaving with the seed beads, some of the things ive seen are beautiful,

  49. Rachael says:

    Loving the fact that you always follow up on our comments and give us really useful links. Have mastered Shamballa style bracelets now, with your help, but now have the chain maille and wire wrapping tutorials to think about too! :)

  50. Lucy says:

    Can’t wait to try this :)
    Id like to see more ideas for ring making.

  51. Great tutorial – I love making these.

    I’d love more ideas for using my Kumihimo discs, especially better ways of finishing off the ends.

  52. heather earp says:

    Would like to see how to make fimo beads from clay!

  53. heather earp says:

    would like to see beads make from clay fimo!

  54. Chrissi says:

    would like to see bead-cap making tutorials so we can make longer earrings

  55. Nam says:

    I would be interested to see tutorials on weaving using leather cord, for chunkier bracelets (unisex) :)

  56. Maggie Jones says:

    I think atutorial on chain-maille (?) incorporating beads would be helpful…..

  57. mamaowl says:

    would love to know how to do the feathers you see in so many people’s hair nowadays.

  58. Spaceboy says:

    Hi, I would like some inspiration for Olympic themed bracelets. Maybe, incorporating wire work? Many Thanks x

  59. Colleen Reilly says:

    I’d luv 2 c some resin tutorials & making fimo beads…..some right angel weave & some chain mail designs.

  60. Victoria says:

    Hi I would like to see some simple bead loom tutorials as I bought a bead loom from you years ago and still haven’t used it! I am determined to make sometihng using it though.

  61. Julie says:

    Hi Bead Barmy!

    I would LOVE to see maybe more polymer clay tutorials like mini foods and sweets or beads.
    That would be amazing and different to.

    Thank’s :D , Julie

  62. jenny argyle says:

    Making flat braids on square Kumihimo disc!

  63. Rachel T says:

    Ooooh would be lovely to see some more charm bracelet tutorials, or bag charm/keyring ones.
    Maybe some more macrame or beading for mens jewellery.

    Another is wirework would love to get more into that xx

  64. lorraine sutton says:

    i would like to see simple and eazy wire soldering…or wire twist art jewelry

  65. DONALD says:

    Dear Sir, Madam,

    How are u? My factory professionally produces crystal balls and crystal balls ear studs &pendants and shamballa bracelets. My workshop has more than 100 experienced workers, which can produce 13,000pcs crystal balls per day. Quality is good. This crystal is glued by clay, so it’s very firm, and won’t drop out easily.

    We mainly use China crystal, Czechic crystal. But we also can use Oktant crytal, or Swarovski crystal as per customers’ requirements. Since they are very popular now, customers buy a lot, and repeat orders a lot

    Attached pls find the quotation of crystal balls, and quotation of crystal ear studs and pendants with 925 silver post or bail. And also pls find our product photos and workshop photos

    We also can glue this crystal into base metal, such as stainless steel, and brass metal.

    Any interests, pls let me know

    Best regards

    Add in English: 2nd Floor, The Southern Comprehensive Building, Xiaoping Industrial Zone, Shiqiao Town, Panyu District, Guangzhou City, China, 511400.
    Address in Chinese: 广州市番禺区市桥小平工业区南排综合楼2楼。
    Tel: 86-20-22879562
    Cell phone: 86-13539711834

  66. Hello Donald,

    You would need to send this information to Beads Unlimited at for our buyers to see.

  67. wholesale shamballa beads says:

    Is surprising and interesting decorative beads that I hope you like it. wholesale shamballa beads

  68. Jada says:

    Where should you get the beads and wire from?

  69. Mackenzie says:

    Never heard the word “shamballah” prior to 5 minutes ago. That’s macrame. The 60s called.

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