As you may or may not know, I’ve had a bit of a love affair lately with recycling/upcycling old jewellery. There is so much good stuff out there – so many awesome beads and jewellery components and it’s pretty exciting to do something unique with them.
I thought I might share my latest piece as I’ve had a few people ask questions about the process.
The beaded necklace was purchased quite a while ago now at a second hand store and was popped into the big box of recycling stuff. I made the circular pendant while I was creating the Silkwater Splash tutorial (here’s a link if you’re interested – Silkwater Splash) and found it to be a perfect match for the beaded necklace.
Some very nasty looking end caps on the beaded necklace needed to be fixed desperately so I decided to wrap them in polymer clay and pop the whole thing in the oven to cure. I could have done it differently and created individual bead caps/cones but to be honest didn’t really think too hard about it before I started (yup…bull at a gate).
I found the wooden beads and seed beads on the necklace faded slightly after curing. Possibly because they were dyed with a product which isn’t head resistant (just me guessing here). You should be able to see the difference in the two pics here. The pic on the left is before oven and on the right after oven!
After a long time in the “not sure what to do with” box I pulled it out again and decided to finish it – mainly because I love the pendant so much and still felt it went well with the beaded necklace.
Many different combinations were played around with and in the end I decided to keep construction quite simple. I was going to do some fancy stuff with the wire you see in the pic above but decided against it (mainly because I couldn’t get the pendant to sit nicely with the wire). I had drilled a hole through the centre of the component which was probably my biggest mistake if I wanted it to hang nicely without flipping over.
These pics show the finished bead caps, new clasp and the pendant with thread hole. I simply drilled using my little hand drill and popped an eyelet in place to neaten the hole, secured with Loctite.
Black cotton cord was used to tie the component onto the centre of the necklace and I highlighted the pendant with a gorgeous, vintage flower button (all thanks to Mary and Lisa Lambright at The Great Create).
I have to say I was pretty happy with how it turned out in the end and have written down all my notes about “what-to-do” and “what-not-to-do” next time!!
Feel free to share some of your recycled/upcycled projects with me – I love that kinda stuff!!
Have a great day everyone.
Wow!!! I have so much of these kinds of necklaces from my step-mom. I was going to take them apart & use the beads. You just saved me soooo much time. I will even be looking at the thrift stores for more!!! Love this idea. Thank you for sharing.
That’s all I asked for from my mom, her costume jewelry. She thought I was crazy! Now, when I can, I add a little of her. Right down to insides of her old watches that would never run again. I’ve got tons of it to work with too. I think your necklace turned out beautiful and if you hadn’t said anything about the beads fading, I would never have noticed. I would definitely wear that! Your Splash tutorial is one of the best! I went right out and bought what I needed, but I haven’t tried it. I’m going to… Read more »
Hey Donna, gosh I can’t thank you enough for your awesome comments honey – that’s so beautiful!! Wow imagine having all your mums costume jewellery – what a treasure and what a delight to be able to include something of your mums into your work – gosh that makes it so special. So glad you like the Silkwater Splash tutorial – I have to admit it’s one of my faves. Huge thanks again Donna. x