Fixing Beading Mistakes!

I've been wanting to write this post for a long time... each time there is a KAL with beading techniques in my Ravelry group I go over these common fixes for problems that might come up when knitting with beads, and I realized it would be great to list them as a permanent resource for you all!

Prestrung or placed a bead incorrectly- Easy... just crush it!
Insert a sewing needle into the center of the bead and then over a damp paper towel, and with glasses on, crush the bead with the tip of a pair of pliers.  Just be sure that your working yarn is far away from the wire cutter at the base of the pliers (ask me how I know this...).

Prestrung too few beads-
You can just "skip" a bead, leaving a unbeaded stitch, or cut your yarn and add another. 
If you skip working this bead (what I would do) you can always afterthought stitch in the bead with a piece of coordinating sewing thread.  Easy to do, and no will will be able to tell it wasn't there all along!

Running into a knot in your yarn (OR really messing up the pre-stringing directions)

If you are working with beads that are prestrung in a specific pattern:
You need to cut the thread after you transfer the beads onto it and string them back onto the yarn with that end so they end up in the correct order

Misplaced or Migrating Beads
If a bead ends up on the wrong side of a stitch or yarn over, you don’t need to rip back. Just wait until you are a few rows beyond the mistake and massage it back into place.
A HUGE NOTE: As with any mistake, this easiest solution is to let sleeping dogs lie.... nothing is perfect (except Buddha) and perhaps the easiest was to not offend the gods is to leave your mistake as is and just keep knitting.  At the end of the day you are not going to be able to see one misplaced or missing bead from a galloping horse!

Did I miss anything you are wondering about?  Please post a question below and I'll add the answer to this post.  Or do you have any favorite tricks to share?  I'd love to hear them!


  1. It has happened to me a couple of times to be short a bead or two very near the end of the process. This is different from when you are putting on beads in batches and you can just start the next batch sooner. For example, you finish the beaded row and then knit two plain rows and you're done, only you don't have all the beads for the beaded row. You can estimate the yarn needed to get to the end, cut the yarn a bit past that point and then string on the missing beads from the end. Then knit to the finish and hope that you left yourself enough yarn! You filled in the bead and you don't have extra ends to weave in.

    1. Thanks for contributing this! A great other problem situation knitter's might find themselves in!

  2. And having migrating beads really is a non-issue. My Magpie has a string of five beads that wandered so far I don't think I would ever have the patience to massage them back. It's *totally* obvious -- except so far no-one else has noticed.

  3. Have you ever massaged a stitch to move it a whole stitch over? I am just finishing the second row of third repeat on Magnify and discovered that last column is moved over a stitch. Am I making sense? Wondering if I can massage the stitches enough to move them over a whole stitch.

    1. Oh, you definitely can! Just move the bead along the strand until it's in the spot you want! Easy!