RSN Essential Stitch Guides: Bead Embroidery – Shelley Cox

Historically beads have always been seen as a desirable source of embellishment. From earliest times beads have been fashioned from a variety of sources to add something special to a garment.

We love this book because it illustrates how beads can be incorporated into embroidery.


Shelley Cox presents an expert guide to all aspects of bead embroidery, including information on counted thread beadwork, bead embroidery, beaded surface embroidery, and fringing. Here you will find stitches and technique for every sort of needlework that involves beads. Decorative effects are explored too, making this a fantastic source book and an invaluable reference for beadwork.

The Royal School of Needlework (RSN) teaches hand embroidery to the highest standard and is well respected all over the world.

It not only upholds the traditions of English embroidery that go back many hundreds of years, but is constantly taking embroidery forwards in new and innovative ways. This series of Essential Stitch Guides has been produced in close collaboration with the RSN with the aim of providing a set of definitive works on traditional embroidery techniques. All of the authors were chosen by the RSN and all are graduate apprentices of the Royal School.


Shelley Cox has gathered together an overview of the history of the use of beads with a very comprehensive collection of the different ways that you can incorporate beads into embroidery.

The content includes
Background to The Royal School of Needlework 


The history of bead embroidery


Framing up 


Basic techniques

Like all RSN guides, there is really helpful step-by-step detail on how to create beaded embroidery with detailed descriptions plus photographs and illustrations. There are also inspirational ideas to help you create your own exquisite and beautiful examples. Shelley also incorporates helpful tips within the text.

If you have been inspired by vintage beaded dresses, bags, and other accessories, or have a collection of beads, or simply want to start your own collection you will love this book, the stitches are simple, but the overall effect is dazzling!  Highly Recommended!