Not your Garden Variety Necklace
Cut loose and alter a beaded necklace with whatever you
Instructions have been edited to fit this website. If
you'd like more detail, photos, techniques and material sources,
can see the directions, photos, and get extra pieces here.
Over the top, funky, wild, anything goes… this project has
it all. Mixed media to the max. Altering a beaded necklace
to create the "enchanted forest" look (call it "the blossoms
get loose" if you must) is fun, creative and always a surprise.
Start with a solid color beaded necklace or string your own
from leftover wood or plastic beads.
The necklace length is up to you, you can switch to chain
after beading 8" so the necklace doesn't get too heavy or
Get out a hobby drill and the smallest bit you can find.
Start drilling holes through the surface of all the beads
(wood beads are the best). You should be able to feed wire
or thread through to the center, knot it and then add beads
to the 1-2" long "creeper vines" with green beads and glass
leaf beads. Keep the "creeper vine" population to the center
Paint those drilled beads with glass or metal paint, (nail
enamel does work well, too). Add pearl-ex powder to bead and
swirl. Let Dry overnight.
Group your flower beads in colors and styles that look informal.
Glass leaf beads and vine color seed beads add a touch of
Putting flowers into the holes you drilled: Slide
flower bead(s) in layers on a short head pin. (Add filigree
bead caps, rhinestone rondels, or faceted bicone beads to
create diversity.) You'll have to trim the headpin so that
the flower beads sit flush to the surface. I have come up
with a 2-glue system that bonds perfectly. Using a head pin
or needle, get a small amount of gorilla glue deep into the
bottom of the drilled hole. (gorilla glue takes 24 hours to
set up, but makes a much stronger bond than super glue). Dab
a small amount of super glue at the surface of the hole to
firmly set the "flower stack" in place.
Repeat this process until you have the "jungle" you desire.
Put seed beads on the thread/wire "vines" and finish the thread
off with a flower or leaf bead. Add clasp to piece and add
a dot of glue to any thread knots. Coat any delicate surfaces
or light spots with a clear gloss glaze like Magic Glos, Gloss
Acrylic Medium, poly resin, even clear nail polish if that
is what you have.
Let sit for 2 days. You may want to add a leaf bead embellishment
or rhinestone when you wear it for the first time. I consider
mine to be "works in progress". (if you take this route, make
sure you photograph the piece often so you can document your