Aug 312015
 

clasp focal dangles necklace

Many times we add a bead dangle to a clasp just for a bit of decoration. But in this week’s necklace we’re adding a bunch of dangles to the clasp and making it the focal point.

This is a fun project to go through your beads and pull out a variety of bits and pieces that you previously didn’t know what to do with.

Included in this necklace is one of my first lampwork beads, a bead given to me by a friend who has moved on, a broken pair of earrings, and a crystal given by special friend.

Using a variety of shades of one color, such as all the different golds and the reds and oranges really gives the piece a richness that you wouldn’t get using just one color.

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

You can watch the Clasp Focal Dangles Necklace Video Tutorial over at YouTube.

Materials

  • large focal lobster clasp, such as:
  • necklace chain in length of your choice with jump rings on the ends
  • a dozen or so assorted beads and charms
  • a few pieces of chain for dangling your charms from (15 inches or so)
  • head pins and jump rings to attach your dangles

Tools

See video for complete assembly directions.

Aug 102015
 

blended colors  bead necklace

For this week’s jewelry project I show you how to take any two colors of seed beads and blend them together into a beautiful necklace. I’ve been on a turquoise and copper kick lately and I absolutely LOVE how this came out.

If you were to use two colors next to each other on the color wheel (such as blue and green) the effect would be subtle and lovely. Use colors opposite each other (such as purple and yellow) for a dramatic look.

The bead stringing takes a little bit of time, but if you watched my Bead Spinner video last week you’ll know how you can do this much faster.

blended beads necklace chart

Here’s the chart that I showed in the video, just help clarify the order of things.

You could do this on a smaller scale for a bracelet, or change any of the section lengths to suit your needs.

blended necklace knotted

And here’s a bonus tip that I discovered. The beaded portion of this necklace is quite long, about 27 inches. If you want to shorten it a bit, a fun way to do that is to tie a loose knot with all the strands. I put mine slightly off center and think I’m going to love wearing it this way.

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

You can watch the Blended Colors Bead Necklace Video Tutorial over at YouTube.

Materials

  • 3 24 gram tubes of 6/0 seed beads of one color
  • 3 24 gram tubes 6/0 seed beads of a second color
  • 6 36-inch pieces of bead thread, such as Nymo Nylon Beading thread
  • 2 bead cones
  • 2 4 mm beads
  • 2 eye pins
  • clasp
  • jump ring
  • 6 inch length of chain

Tools

  • chain nose pliers
  • round nose pliers
  • wire cutters
  • scissors
  • ruler
  • super glue
  • needle threader
  • funnel
  • small dish
  • Bead Spinner
  • optional: extra curved needles for bead spinner, six would be ideal

Directions

  1. Tie all six lengths of beading thread together at one end with an overhand knot.
  2. String 5 inches of color A onto each of the six strands.
  3. Mix together one tube of each color and string 5 inches of these mixed colors onto each of the six strands. Set mixed colors aside.
  4. String 6 inches of color B onto each of the six strands.
  5. String 5 inches of mixed colors onto each of six strands.
  6. Finish by stringing 5 inches of color A onto each of the six strands.
  7. Open an eye pin and tie ends of six strands around eye pin. Close eye pin and tie strands again to knot. Dab with super glue and allow to dry.
  8. Repeat on the other end of necklace, making sure beads are all snug against the first end.
  9. Onto each eye pin slide a bead cone and a 4mm bead. Use round nose pliers to make a loop, trimming excess wire with wire cutters.
  10. To one loop attach one end of the chain. To the other loop attach your clasp with a jump ring.
Aug 032015
 

donut & dangles necklace

Although this mosaic turquoise donut looks great all by itself it’s accented by all the dangles on top. The rustic cord just adds to the Southwestern vibe.

Even though you have to wire wrap 2 dozen dangles, this project goes fairly quickly because you can wrap them all independently and not have to hold them on to something.

I think this necklace is great for wearing in the summertime, something about turquoise and summer go together in my opinion.

You can find Mosaic Turquoise in different colors and sizes over at Fire Mountain Gems.

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

You can watch the Donut and Dangles Necklace Video Tutorial over at YouTube.

Materials:

Tools:

  • round nose pliers
  • chain nose pliers
  • wire cutters

Instructions:

  1. Hold both pieces of cord together treating as one. Fold in half and poke loop at center through hole in donut. Bring all four cords back through the loop and pull to tighten.
  2. Make wire wrapped loops with head pins and beads, making sure loops are large enough to fit over four strands of cord.
  3. Slide all wire wrapped dangles over all four strands of cord, shaking down to make them all nest together above the donut. Tie four cords in an overhand knot above dangles to hold in place.
  4. Add knots and and accent beads to cord as desired. Add jump ring to clasp and tie on one end of cords. Tie short length of chain to other end of cords,  knotting and trimming cord ends to finish.
Jun 012015
 

art glass lentil necklace

I picked up this huge lampworked glass lentil bead at a bead show last October. It was made by glass artist Ann Conlin.  We’re often so impressed with these large focal beads, but then it can be a dilemma what to do with them.

In the video I give you several ideas and then show how to put together these multiple strands with bead caps.

So don’t be intimidated by the giant focals, they can make quite a statement!

Enjoy the video and happy creating. 🙂

You can watch the Art Glass Lentil Necklace Video Tutorial over at YouTube.

Materials:

  • 37mm diameter lentil shaped glass art bead
  • 15-inches each of seven strands of beads
  • 7 20-inch lengths of bead stringing wire
  • crimp beads
  • 2 bead caps
  • 2 eye pins
  • 2 4-inch lengths of chain
  • lobster clasp
  • jump ring

Tools:

  1. String 7 1/2-inches of beads onto each piece of stringing wire.
  2. Finish one end of each wire with a crimp and a small loop of wire, trimming off excess wire. Open loop of an eye pin and place all wire loops into it. Close loop securely and slide on a bead cap to cover.
  3. Use chain nose pliers to grasp wire just at point where it exits bead cap.  Bend wire at 90° angle.  Grasp bend with round nose pliers and wrap wire around pliers as far as possible to start to make a loop.  Reposition pliers to finish loop.  Slightly twist loop open and insert end link of one of the pieces of chain. Close loop and hold with chain nose pliers. Use another pair of chain nose to wrap remaining wire around wire below 90° bend. Use wire cutters to trim, if necessary. Use chain nose pliers to tuck in end.
  4. Gather all wires together and slide through art glass bead.
  5. String remaining 7 1/2 inches of beads onto each wire and repeat steps 2 and 3 to finish other end.
  6. Add a lobster clasp to one chain and a jump ring to the other to complete your necklace.
Apr 272015
 

Mojave Sparkles Necklace

The muted earth tones in this necklace make me think of the soft light at dawn or dusk in the desert. I love the contrast between the earthy jasper beads and the sparkly Swarovski bicone crystals. Even though they contrast, it’s the colors that make them work together.

This design concept of adding smaller beaded sections to a necklace fascinates me.

scalloped pearl necklace

Jude Wroblewski’s bib style necklace featured at FireMountainGems.com

My inspiration for this piece was Jude Wroblewski’s bib style necklace featured over at FireMountainGems. Her piece has over a dozen scalloped strands and those really are the focus of the necklace.

Since I wanted my picture jasper beads to be the focus, I kept the scallops more subdued.

Have fun designing your own necklace with as many or as few scalloped strands as you like. Make them full and lush like Jude’s, more restrained like mine or just all your very own. 🙂

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

You can watch the Mojave Sparkles Necklace Video Tutorial over at YouTube.

Materials:

  • 8 15mm x 20mm oval jasper beads
  • 9 5mm antique gold plated corrugated beads
  • 60 4mm Swarovski crystal bicone beads (I used a combination of their color mix “Mojave” and crystal clear)
  • 8 inches 3mm brass spacer beads
  • 8 inches chain, cut into two 4-inch pieces
  • 1 or 2 jump rings
  • lobster clasp
  • bead stringing wire
  • 8 wire protectors
  • 8 crimp beads
  • 8 crimp covers (optional)

Tools:

Directions:

  1. Cut a 5-inch piece bead stringing wire. Onto bead stringing wire slide a crimp, then slide wire into one end of wire protector and out the other. Slide the wire end back through the crimp and bring crimp to within 1/8-inch of wire protector. Flatten crimp with One Step Crimper or crimping pliers and squeeze ends of wire protector together. Trim shorter piece of wire close to crimp.  If desired, cover crimp with a crimp cover by picking up with crimping pliers, sliding over flattened crimp and gently squeezing pliers. Use crimping pliers to shape cover into a round bead shape if necessary.
  2. String 20 4mm Swarovski crystal bicone beads onto bead stringing wire and repeat step 1 to finish end of wire. Repeat 2 more times to make 3 small strands of crystals.
  3.  Add a Bead Stopper to one end of a 20-inch piece of bead stringing wire. String on 5mm spacer>jasper bead>5mm spacer>jasper bead>5mm spacer>end of one crystal strand>jasper bead>5mm spacer>end of second crystal strand>jasper bead>end of first crystal strand>5mm spacer>end of third crystal strand>jasper bead>end of second crystal strand>5mm spacer>jasper bead>end of third crystal strand>5mm spacer>jasper bead>5mm spacer>jasper bead>5mm spacer.
  4. To each end of stringing wire add 4 inches of 3mm brass spacers. Finish the ends as in step one, adding end link of a 4-inch piece of chain before bringing wire back through crimp.
  5. Use a jump ring to add a lobster clasp to one end of chain. If needed, add a jump ring to other end of chain.
Feb 162015
 

mojave sunrise necklace

This necklace uses crystal bicone beads  in a different sort of way, making strung wire shapes as accents. You could easily get creative with this, making bows or butterflies or other such things. I stuck with a simple loopy flower.

The copper findings work perfectly with this Swarovski crystal color mix called “Mojave.” It does indeed put me in mind of sunrises in the Mojave desert.

The colors in the mix are Light Smoked Topaz, Light Amethyst, Sand Opal and Indian Sapphire.

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

You can watch the Mojave Sunrise Necklace Video Tutorial over at YouTube.

Materials:

  • 3 packages 4 mm Swarovski crystal bicone bead mix in color “Mojave” (90 beads total)
  • chain in necklace length of your choice
  • additional 9-inch piece necklace chain
  • 5 jump rings
  • clasp
  • 2 crimps
  • 16 head pins
  • 15-inch piece bead stringing wire

Tools:

  • wire cutters
  • chain nose pliers

See video for complete instructions. 

Jan 192015
 

Every time I look at these stick pearls all I can think is “Dragon’s Teeth.” Not sure why, but that’s where my mind goes, so there you have it.

dragon's teeth necklace

I suppose I could have named it “Spiky Stick Pearl Necklace” but that wouldn’t have been nearly as interesting. Amiright?

In this necklace I show you a technique for using  multiple strands of beading wire and having them twist and turn amongst each other.  You can use any beads you like to do this, from very simple and elegant, to the crazy and funky direction that I went.

Whatever you create, have fun and enjoy the process. 🙂

Enjoy the video and happy creating.

You can watch the Dragon’s Teeth Necklace Video Tutorial over at YouTube.

Supplies used in this necklace:

  • top drilled stick pearl beads
  • top drilled 3mm x 6mm pearls
  • 4mm Swarovski crystal clear bicone beads
  • 12 mm round lava beads
  • gold colored stringing wire
  • crimp beads
  • crimp covers
  • 2 round parts from toggle clasps
  • suede leather cord
  • lobster clasp with jump ring
  • 2 inch length of chain

Tools:

See video for directions.

 

 

Jan 052015
 

Ombre Necklace

This necklace is all about the beads and the ombre shading from dark to light.  Once you’ve chosen all your beads the little silver spacers tie everything together and the stringing is simple.

As usual I chose to make mine adjustable. In the video I show you a trick for using fine chain, rather than the chunky I usually use, and still have a necklace that’s adjustable in length.

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

You can watch the Ombre Blend Necklace Tutorial over at YouTube.

Materials:

  • 10-12 dark blue beads
  • 10-12 medium dark blue beads
  • 10-12 medium blue beads
  • 10-12 medium light blue beads
  • 10-12 light blue beads
  • 3mm silver spacer beads
  • bead stringing wire
  • 2 crimps
  • 2 crimp covers
  • 2 wire protectors
  • silver plated chain, fine gauge
  • 4mm jump rings
  • lobster clasp

Tools:

  • chain nose pliers
  • crimping pliers
  • wire cutters
  1. Cut the fine gauge chain into 1 inch pieces. Reconnect the pieces with 4mm jump rings to make chains the length you need.
  2. Onto bead stringing wire slide a crimp, then slide wire into one end of wire protector and out the other. Add one end of your piece of chain to the wire protector. Slide the wire end back through the crimp and bring crimp to within 1/8-inch of wire protector. Flatten crimp and squeeze ends of wire protector together. Trim shorter piece of wire close to crimp. Cover crimp with a crimp cover by picking up with crimping pliers, sliding over flattened crimp and gently squeezing pliers. Use crimping pliers to shape cover into a round bead shape if necessary.
  3. Slide a spacer bead onto your wire. Add all your lightest color beads, each separated by a spacer bead. Continue to add beads from lightest to darkest,  each separated by a spacer bead. End with a spacer bead.
  4. Repeat step 2 to finish end, adding a lobster clasp to end of one of piece of chain.
Dec 012014
 

There’s an interesting story behind how this necklace got started.  I have mentioned that I teach jewelry making at my local Joann’s store. We were having a demo day where we show samples of our work and the teachers are available to talk to prospective students.

It was a two hour event and it seemed like a good idea to be working on something jewelry-like while sitting there, so I threw together a kit of a a few tools plus these pink shell beads, some crystals and some head pins.

fuchsia finery statement necklace

When I came home from the event, I looked at my 12 hot pink & crystal bead dangles and said, “Huh.” So hence, the trip to the craft store that I mention in the video.

The rest of it came together pretty much the way I explain in the video: add some clear crystals to bring out the crystals in the nest, add mixed metals to compliment the nest, the bird, etc.

I think my favorite part of this necklace is the addition of the little pink Swarovskis to the nest. Dunno why, but they make me happy. 🙂

fuchsia finery statement necklace close up

This is my usual design process, btw, I rarely have a specific thing in mind when I begin but just pick a starting point and go from there.

How about you? Do you work from sketches or some kind of plan? Or do you use a different type of process?

However you work, happy creating!

Enjoy the video! And if you make a project based on this tutorial, please feel free to share photos in the “Your Creations” folder at my Facebook page.

You can watch the Fuchsia Finery Statement Necklace Video Tutorial over at YouTube.

Materials:

This list is what I used, but I hope you’ll search your stash and your local stores and find items that perfectly suit YOU. 🙂

  • 13 dyed pearl beads, 10mm- 16mm
  • 4 6mm opal Swarovski crystal bicone beads
  • 5 4mm clear Swarovski crystal bicone beads
  • 13 head pins
  • 1 bird’s nest & bird mixed media pendant
  • 28 6mm faceted Czech clear crystal beads
  • 28 6mm antique gold bead caps
  • 14 6mm antique gold plated fluted beads
  • 4 15mm copper gears
  • 4 8mm oval jump rings
  • 4 crimps
  • 4 crimp covers
  • 2 wire protectors
  • bead stringing wire
  • 2 12mm copper plated cage bead
  • 2 7-inch lengths copper chain
  • lobster clasp
  • 4 jump rings
  • 3 4mm pink Swarovski crystal bicone beads

Tools:

See the video for complete directions.

Nov 242014
 

blushing pinks necklace

Today’s project is a study in simplifying.  Rather then seeing how many elements you can add to a piece, how about figuring out how many you can eliminate?

I used rose quartz round beads, but you could just as easily use pearls. Instead of the ceramic beads, why not try some large, funky nuggets? While designing this I tried out a huge black lampworked bead that would have been interesting, if only I’d had other beads to go with it.

So, use this design as a jumping off point for your own jewelry, whether it be quiet & elegant, bright & crazy, or something else completely. 🙂

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

You can watch the Blushing Pinks Necklace Video Tutorial over at YouTube.

Materials:

  • 3 31mm x 14mm ceramic beads
  • several inches of clear seed beads (if needed)
  • 4 copper spacer beads
  • 18 10mm rose quartz  beads
  • 21 8mm rose quartz beads
  • 25 inches bead stringing wire
  • 2 wire protectors
  • 4 crimps
  • 4 crimp covers
  • 2-3 inch piece of chunky chain
  • clasp
  • head pin

Tools:

Directions:

  1. Add a Bead Stopper near the center of bead stringing wire. String on one copper spacer and seed beads, if needed (see video for details.) Add ceramic bead and another spacer.
  2. Repeat to add 4 spacers and 3 ceramic beads to wire.
  3. On one side of ceramic beads string 9 10 mm rose quartz beads, then 10 8 mm rose quartz beads.
  4. Onto bead stringing wire slide 2 crimps, then slide wire into one end of wire protector and out the other. Add loop of your clasp to the wire protector. Slide the wire end back through the crimps and bring crimps to within 1/8-inch of wire protector. Flatten crimps and squeeze ends of wire protector together. Cover crimps with  crimp covers by picking up with crimping pliers, sliding over flattened crimp and gently squeezing pliers. Use crimping pliers to shape covers into round bead shapes if necessary.
  5. Remove bead stopper and repeat steps 3 & 4 to finish other end of necklace, adding piece of chain instead of clasp in step 4.
  6. Slide remaining 8mm rose quartz bead into headpin. Use chain nose pliers to grasp wire just at point where it exits bead.  Bend wire at 90° angle.  Grasp bend with round nose pliers and wrap wire around pliers as far as possible to start to make a loop.  Reposition pliers to finish loop.  Slightly twist loop open and insert end link of piece of chain. Close loop and hold with chain nose pliers. Use another pair of chain nose to wrap remaining wire around wire below 90° bend. Use wire cutters to trim, if necessary. Use chain nose pliers to tuck in end.