Wednesday, January 8, 2014

How to Bead Weave a DNA Helix the Right Way

By on Wednesday, January 08, 2014 2 Comments

I've featured DNA inspired jewelry before which used different techniques.  Beadweaving is perhaps the best way to showcase the double helix which comprises of two spiral backbones made of sugar and phosphate groups. These are linked by rungs of 4 types of nucleotides. These are called base pairs because adenine from one ladder will only bind to thymine of the other, while guanine will do so with cytosine.

Bugles are the base pairs

Gwen Fisher (GwenBeads), a beader and a mathematician whose beadwork I featured before, came up with inspirational designs and a detailed video tutorial on how to get that spiral effect right using ladder and peyote stitches.  I also love how she used a bit of coding from an actual bacterial species to guide her with the seed bead colors.

Her first blog post covers the details.  The closeup of the earrings above shows bugle beads representing the base pairs (rungs).  So to show greater scientific accuracy, she wrote a second post and described how she substituted the bugles for the color coded seed beads representing the base pairs.

seed beads as base pairs

Gwen is also one half of Beadinfinitum where she sells finished beadwork, tutorials and kits.

Before You Go:
Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
Jewelry Making Tips - Jewelry Business Tips 



  1. This is what intimidates me when it comes to bead weaving - the math! Just kidding but I'm happy that I know where to find beading tutorials when I finally decide to give it a try :) The earrings look so plentiful!

  2. These are a little more challenging for beginners. But there are loads of other easy beadweaving tutorials to try. Just search the blog!