Have you ever seen a beautiful strand of beads at the craft store and wished you knew what to do with them? You are not alone. The top three questions we get are: How do I turn beads into a necklace? What should I string the beads on? How do I put on a clasp? We’ll answer these questions while we show you how to make this beautiful beaded necklace. We also have a lesson on Skillshare explaining step by step how to make this necklace. The class is free and it’s super fun. Click here to see it!
Introduction To Bead Stringing
Tools & Materials
3 Strands of beads
Bead stringing wire, 19-strand Silver
Toggle clasp, silver or silver-plate
2 Crimp beads, silver or silver-plate
2 Crimp bead covers, silver or silver-plate
Some Jewelry Terminology:
Crimp bead: A crimp bead is a small tube of metal, often silver or silver-plate, that is pressed flat onto wire to keep beads from sliding off. It is also used to attach a clasp the end of a bracelet or necklace. You can cover the flattened crimp bead with a crimp bead cover to make it look like a bead.
Bead Stringing Wire: This is very flexible coated wire that is made for bead stringing. It is stronger than thread and more flexible that wire.
Here is a little video we made explaining the different types of wire used in jewelry making:
Steps To Make The Necklace
1. When you buy your beads at the bead store or craft store, often they come as strands. To make your necklace, cut the beads off this temporary string. Lay the beads out on a piece of felt or towel (to keep them from rolling around). Or you could use a Design Board.
Here is a video we made showing how to use a Design Board, also called a Bead Board.
2. Arrange the beads in the order you like. We did ours in a somewhat random pattern, but made sure to spread the best beads around the necklace and not have too many of the same beads near each other. Use a tape measure to make sure the bead design will be long enough. (We made our necklace about 20″ long including the clasp.)
3. Cut a 23″ length of bead stringing wire with your wire cutters. Place a piece of masking tape at one end to keep the beads from sliding off. Then start sliding the beads on the other end. Fill the wire with 16 to 18 inches of beads, depending on how long you want your necklace to be.
4. To finish the first end of the beaded necklace, feed the wire into a crimp bead.
5. Slide the wire through one side of the clasp.
6. Then feed the end of the wire back through the crimp bead.
7. Press the crimp bead closed using the chain-nose pliers.
8. Trim the end of the wire with the wire cutters.
9. Slide a crimp bead cover over the crimp bead and press it closed using the china-nose pliers.
10. To finish the other end of the necklace, slide the beads toward the end with the clasp. Remove the masking tape. Repeat steps 4 through 7, sliding on the crimp bead, the other side of the clasp, and poking the end of the wire back through the crimp bead.
11. Press the crimp bead closed. Then trim the wire.
12. Cover the crimp bead with a crimp bead cover and press it closed. Tada! A beautiful beaded necklace!
Remember when you are making your necklace, we are here to help. If you have any questions, just leave us a comment and we’ll reply!
Happy Jewelry Making!
Jennifer & Kitty