I've been trying for months to crochet a beaded bead or beaded ball. All over the house are strings of beads with misshapen blobs at the end. I just couldn't get it right. This week I came across a YouTube video by Erika Vondrak, Beaded Ball Tutorial Crochet with English subtitles and realised what I was doing wrong. When I crochet beaded rope, I use slip stitch, put the bead in place and pull the thread through in one movement. But that doesn't work for the beaded ball: you have to use a double crochet stitch (UK terms, single crochet in American terms). Put the bead in place and then pull the thread through twice. Aha.
The pattern I had didn't seem quite right, so I went back to my amigurumi pattern book and used the pattern for a frog's head! It worked. Nearly. Amazingly, it was the right size for the deodorant ball I've been saving:
My first attempt was a bit skimpy at the top:
This ball is a bit big for jewelry, but it could work as a Christmas tree decoration perhaps. In any case, now I have the answer I can move forward!