The Taco Chip Surprise
The Taco Chip Surprise

a crochet pendant design
Lydia F Borin
The Beadwrangler


shown with the Golden Chip Why-Knot necklace
a Bead Stringing Circle Project



This project is based on techniques from my book, Beadwrangler’s Hands On Crochet with Beads and Fiber. Techniques and pages listed below indicate where to find the information in my book. If you have already made several projects from my book, you may not need to refer to all the techniques.

Crochet Terms, pg. 9

Review these techniques:

  • Working From a Storage Card, pg.52
  • Working From a Spool, pg.52
  • Pre-stringing Beads, pg.53
  • Adding Beads to Crochet, pg.54
  • Fastening/Tying Off Thread, pg.55
  • Adding and Joining Thread, pg.53
  • Optional, Using Auxiliary Thread, pg.55
  • Safety Pin Tracker, pg. 17

I used a size 12 crochet hook; Jeans Stitch Thread #8 Topaz Gold; Fine Metallic Thread #50 Red/Gold Variegated, small goldstone chips approximately " each in size and size 10 cut glass Rainbow Topaz beads.

For information about the Beadwrangler's Taco Chip Surprise Kit, click here.


  • General Supply List, pg. 8
  • 125 small gemstone chips, or bugles #2, or #2mm freshwater pearls or beads
  • 36 size 10 or 11 cut glass beads or seed beads
  • Thread, Jeans Stitch, Topstitching, or Anchor/DMC #80 or equivalent
  • Optional, Sulky Metallic Thread
Note: Chips are not all even in size, some have smaller holes than others. Make sure you buy enough chips so that is if some holes are too small to string on the thread, you will still have enough for the project. If you use larger chips, you can use Anchor/DMC #8,however, the taco will be larger in overall size and weight.

Special Instructions
This design is worked in the round and spirals. After Round 1, make continuous rounds with 1sc as the joining stitch to each round. You will begin adding chips after round 9. If you are new to crochet, you may want to use a safety pin to keep up with the number of stitches. If you miss a stitch, or do not remember if the last stitch was 2sc or 1sc, don't worry, it is not critical. It just means you may use more or less chips around the edge. Do not string more than about 45 chips at a time or the thread will begin to fray from movement of the chips back and forth. If you want less chips around the piece, skip 3 stitches before each chip chain. The metallic threads will make the project more difficult to complete and if you are a beginner, you may want to make your first taco without metallics. You can string the chips through both threads or string them only on the regular thread and pull the metallic thread up separately. It will look differently both ways. 1 - With the chips on both threads, the thread will lay down evenly between the chips, 2 - With the metallic thread separate, if will fold around the chips as you pull them up and show more metallic thread. I chose the 2nd way because I like more of the metallic threads showing; it is also more difficult to control. Note: You will not find any *.* in my crochet instructions; they are too confusing for beginners. To keep from losing your place, take a paper clip and stick it on the left-hand side of the printed instructions next to each round and move it down to the next round when you have finished the previous round.


Crochet Rounds
1 ch5 and join with a slip stitch to make a circle.
2 ch1. work 1sc in the first ch of the circle and 2sc in the next, alternate, and join to beg ch. (total - 7 stitches)
3 1sc in 1 st and 2sc in next, alternate, and join to beg st. (total - 10 stitches)
4 1sc in 1 st and 2sc in next, alternate, and join to beg st. (total - 15 stitches)
5 1sc in 1 st and 2sc in next, alternate, and join to beg st. (total - 22 stitches)
6 1sc in 1 st and 2sc in next, alternate, and join to beg st. (total - 33 stitches)
7 1sc in 1 st and 2sc in next, alternate, and join to beg st. (total - 49 stitches)
8 1sc in 1 st and 2sc in next, alternate, and join to beg st. (total - 73 stitches)
9 .Work 3 slip stitches at the end to even out the last round. The circular piece should be the size of a USA quarter and should be flat. Next you will be making chip chains and attaching them to the main circular piece.
10 ADD BEADS(chips). bch 5, sk next 2sts in round, work 1sc in 3rd st, then bch5, sk next 2sts, work 1sc in 5th st, alternate, continue until you have approximately 25 chip chains around or are at the end of the round. The last chip chain should go into the last stitch where it meets the beg st. Fasten Off.

Finishing Touches
Tie off loose threads with a needle and cut off the excess thread. Now look at the piece carefully. It is a circle with chips surrounding it. There is a lot of potential here. You could add these beaded circles to your quilts, embroidery and other fiberwork. Now fold the piece in half and it looks like a taco. You could make several of these taco pieces and also add them to other work or make a necklace with several of them together with beads or fiber separating them. How about tacos on a needlewoven necklace? It could happen!

The taco is now folded. Decide if you want a lark's head loop or direct loop for hanging your taco on a necklace. See page 22 with illustrations. The Taco Chip Surprise I made uses the lark's head loop to go on a Why Knot necklace. I used 36 cut beads for my loop. Refer to page 22 for making either loop. Make sure you go through the loop a 2nd time with more thread for strength.

Why call it a surprise? Since chips are not uniform, you never know exactly how each taco will look until finished.When I started making this design as a project, I had no idea what it would be, so when I finished and looked at it, it was a surprise to me! It may surprise you to see it looks so spectacular and was so easy to make.

Your Taco Chip Surprise is now complete. How about a necklace to hang it on?

For a chained or braided necklace check page 57 of Beadwrangler's Hands On Crochet.

If you are a member of the Bead Stringing Circle, you will find a beadacious matching Golden Chip Why-Knot Necklace like mine in the Bead Stringing Projects.

Of course the great thing about the Golden Chip Why-Knot necklace is that you can take the Taco Chip Surprise off, turn the the Golden Chip necklace around and wear it letting the big beads on the end dangle in front.

NOTE: This design is the property of Lydia F Borin and is for personal use only. No part of this project may be used as part of another project, magazine article, book or other printed or electronic publication without the written permission of the owner.  For further information contact

When you make copies of these instructions to share with your friends, please tell them you got them at Beadwrangler's.

For more crochet projects like this one, check Lydia's latest book, Beadwrangler's Hands On Crochet with Beads and Fiber.   For information and photos of projects, click here.

Return to Top