The beaded ornament cover shown here is a modified version of the ornament Emily Hackbarth presented on Beadwork at The Mining Company.
I modified Emily's design to fit the smaller ornaments--the ones that are approximately 1 1/2" across.
You'll need a tube of seed beads (I used Japanese seeds), 12 small and 6 large accent beads, or 18 small accent beads (I used teardrops).
Start with 5-6' of your favorite beading thread. The the initial ring consists of 36 beads--pick up 36 beads and slide them almost to the end of your thread. Then, using a square knot, tie them into a ring.
Go through the bead nearest the knot (whichever direction is most comfortable--I generally work from right to left).
Pick up 22 beads, an accent bead (large teardrop works well here) and 22 more beads. Then, skipping the next 5 beads in the initial ring, go through the next bead and firm up the loop. If you wish to secure the thread, go through the bead a second time.
Pick up 7 beads; then, counting down 7 beads on the nearest side of your loop, slide the needle down through the next 3 beads. Pick up 12 beads, an accent bead, and 22 more beads; then, skipping the next 5 beads in the inital ring, go through the next bead and firm up the loop.
Follow the instructions for the above paragraph 3 more times (you'll have completed 5 loops).
For the 6th loop, pick up 7 beads; then, counting down 7 beads, slide the needle down through the next 3 beads. Pick up 12 beads, an accent bead and 12 more beads. Counting down 10 beads on the very first loop, slide your needle up through the 10th, 9th & 8th beads, then pick up 7 beads and go through the bead (again) nearest the knot.
At this point you may wish to tie another square knot, dab it with nail polish & clip off the tail.
Your project should look something like the image below, and will consist of the initial ring, loops and slices (I'm sure the geometry gurus would have better terminology).
Needle down through the first 3 beads of the nearest slice (see scanned image). Pick up 7 beads, an accent bead and two more beads. Go back through the 3rd bead before the accent bead. Pick up 4 more beads, count 3 beads down on the next slice, and slide the needle up through those 3 beads (and the center bead from the initial ring). Tighten up this loop (you might have to hold the accent bead to center it correctly).
Do this step five more times to complete this round. Pass the needle down through the slice and through the 3 connecting beads between the loops, go through 3 beads of the previous loop. To see a larger version of this image, click here.
Pick up 5 beads, an accent bead and two more beads. Go back through the 3rd bead before the accent bead. Pick up 2 more beads, count 3 beads down on the next loop, go through 8 beads, the accent bead and the other 8 beads. Do this step five more times 'til the round is complete.
To make a lovely miniature ornament, you can use Japanese 15's or Charlottes and drape the cover over a 1" bulb.