Bic lighter cover woven from glass beads

Bic lighter cover hand-woven using even-count, tubular peyote stitch. The beads are all Miyuki Delicas. Background is gunmetal grey, decoration is pearl white, grey with rainbow luster, black, galvanized silver, and a tiny touch of red. Over 2,000 beads were used to weave it. I made this back in 2014 and it remains my most shared post on Pinterest.

These are labor intensive – each lighter cover takes about 24 to 30 hours of needlework. It’s made with Delica beads because they form a regular, smooth surface which is best for work like this, I think. I’ve made four and enjoyed making them but I’m not sure if I’ll make more.

A Small Caution

Beaded Bic light covers do have some problems. Glass beads are sturdy but not indestructible. My husband kept one in his pocket and it didn’t take long before his keys crushed some of the beads. I kept mine in my purse and the beads survived but the Fireline fiber used to weave it began to give way around the bottom edge after a few months. Each time the lighter is used, strong pressure goes through the join between bottom and sides, and it causes stress to the weaving. Eventually, it starts to give.

Some Alternatives

If I weave a container again, I will probably make miniature boxes. They use the same stitch and same beads but since they’re mostly decorative, they won’t have the same problems with durability. Lifting a lid isn’t as hard on a weaving as pressing hard against the bottom. The same patterns can be applied, with some small adjustments for the size and shape of the box. They can be made to encase a solid box like an Altoids tin but if they are small, they can also stand alone.

In 2006, Julia Pretl wrote a popular book called Little Bead Boxes that has starting patterns for twelve small, beaded containers with some intriguing shapes. I might start with one of those if I decide to try a project like this again.

March 21, 2019

Mrs Kirks Jewels - Bic lighter cover hand-woven using even-count, tubular peyote stitch. Beads are all Miyuki Delicas. Background is gunmetal grey, decoration is pearl white, grey with rainbow luster, black, galvanized silver and a tiny touch of red. Over 2,000 beads were used to weave it. September 2014, Calaveras County

Bic lighter cover woven using even-count, tubular peyote stitch.


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