How to Make a Beaded Snowflake Ornament

Two Parts:Designing the snowflake stemsMaking the beaded snowflake ornament

This beaded snowflake is a simple design and easy to make, yet it produces a stunning result that looks complex and elegant. If you set up an assembly line for making a set of these with your family, you can soon have a whole tree's worth of gorgeous beaded snowflakes made by hand. This tutorial uses pipe cleaners and beads to form the ornaments.

Part 1
Designing the snowflake stems

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    Choose the beads. The beads should all be of a similar size but they can be varied shapes. Choose crystal, pearl, plain, cylinder, faceted and round, to provide pretty variety. They must have threading holes in them, and the hole must be large enough to accept a pipe cleaner being pushed through.
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    Arrange the beads you're using on a bead board or similar sorting item. To begin with, you'll need to develop the pattern for the beads you're using. This pattern will go along each stem and looks best when it is reflect symmetrically on each of the snowflake's stems. Hence, making a template makes it easy for you to follow for every snowflake stem per snowflake decoration being made.
    • For example, you could make a pattern that goes: One round crystal bead, one pearl bead, one cylinder bead, one round bead, repeat. Or, any other variation that pleases you. The important thing is to mix up pearl, crystal and plain to give the impression of "glittering".
    • Consider using a few larger beads around the center of the snowflake, allowing you to show off some very special beads and create the impression of a typical snowflake with a larger center which descends into smaller tips.
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    Keep one line of the design stuck down on double-sided tape. That way, the design can be referred to again and again and if it's accidentally bumped, it'll stay in place.

Part 2
Making the beaded snowflake ornament

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    Form a snowflake shape from the three pipe cleaners.
    • Align the pipe cleaners in a row on a flat surface.
    • Twist the pipe cleaners around the middle two to three times to join them together.
    • Pull the untwisted lengths apart. Spread them out by their tips to form a 6-pointed star or snowflake shape, with all the sections evenly placed apart from each other.
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    Thread the beads on. Following the order you've chosen for the beads (see Part 1 above), begin to thread the beads onto the snowflake. If you're using larger beads around the center, obviously these are the ones to start with. Push the beads all the way to the twisted join in the middle, right up the stem.
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    Repeat for each stem of the snowflake being created.
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    To finish each end, dab the glue on to form a solid stopper. This will prevent the last bead (and any other beads) from slipping off. The furriness of the pipe cleaner will also assist in keeping the beads snugly in place. Allow the glue to dry fully.
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    Place a hanger on the completed snowflake decoration. Use the invisible thread or monofilament and cut as long a hanging length as needed for your tree, window or other hanging location. Tie one end to one tip of the snowflake and knot tightly. Cut off any excess from the knot. Tie the other end in a loop for hanging over a cup hook, tree branch or pinning into wood, etc.
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    Repeat as many times as you need snowflake ornaments. A whole tree covered in these looks stunning. They also make nice gifts, especially if you include a "handmade by me" gift note.


  • It will often be best to match the bead and pipe cleaner colors together except where you think a contrast of color showing through for transparent beads would enhance the overall appearance of the snowflake.

Things You'll Need

  • 3 pipe cleaners (chenille sticks) per snowflake decoration, usually in either white or silver (although feel free to vary colors as per your color scheme)
  • Small beads in the color of snowflakes (white), pearls, crystal beads (if making a different color, vary the bead color too); the beads should be mostly round but cylindrical ones look great in the design too
  • Bead board or similar, for sorting easily and double-sided tape
  • Craft glue, white PVA glue - the glue must dry clear
  • Clear monofilament/invisible thread

Article Info

Categories: Christmas Ornaments | Beading