By Amy Solovay
Show off your wire crochet skills with this fab beaded flower necklace!
Both the necklace band and the pendant are crocheted using wire and beads. The bead mix I chose for my sample necklace includes beads that are shiny, metallic, pearlescent and matte; they combine well with the wire for a look that is eye-catching and visually interesting.
I used two different kinds of wire in this necklace. In the necklace band, I wanted to de-emphasize the wire; I didn't want the wire to be the first thing that grabs your eye. A finer gauge wire accomplished that goal nicely, and it also helped to make the necklace band nice and flexible. For the pendant, a heavier colored wire was used, with the intention of making the flower take "center stage."
Skill Level: Experienced. Patient. No doubt about it, this pattern is fiddly. It will require some skill to complete.
If you've successfully completed a wire crochet project before, I'm sure you can handle this one. If you haven't completed a wire crochet project yet, this one is not the best one to start with in my opinion; I suggest trying the freshwater pearl necklace or the jasper necklace before you move onto making this one. I make this recommendation because I think it's a good idea for you to get a feel for the wire crochet technique using larger beads and wire before you move on to working with itty bitty beads and ultra-thin wire. However, that's up to you. Your determination level is also an important part of your success; if you're determined to make this necklace, you can do it, regardless of your experience level with wire crochet or crochet in general. This isn't rocket science or anything. You know?
Make 3 of These Strands as Follows: String your beads onto your 34 gauge craft wire. If you're using a bead mix like mine, just string the beads at random without worrying about a stringing pattern. Otherwise, if there's a certain order you want your beads to be in, be sure to string them in that pattern to start with.
Leave a length of at least 5 inches or so unworked, then make a slip knot in the wire. [Slide a bead right up close to the work. Reach around the bead with your crochet hook and grab the wire; pull it through your active loop to make a chain stitch with a bead sandwiched inside.] Repeat the sequence inside the brackets until the strand is the length you want it to be. I made strands of about 16 inches. It's a good idea to make your strands a few inches longer than you actually want the beaded part of the necklace band to be; you'll lose a bit of length during the finishing process.
Attach the Pendant: Take one of the three strands and determine where the midpoint is. This is the place to attach your flower pendant. I attached mine by wrapping the loose wire ends of the flower pendant around the strand a couple of times and then weaving the remaining bits of the ends back into the flower. If you'd prefer to use a ring or other hardware, that might be an improvement over the way I did mine.
Slowly braid your three strands together, manipulating the wire and beads as you work to achieve the nicest possible effect.
You can also braid your three loose wire ends together on each side.
I camouflaged the braided wire by stringing six additional seed beads at each end, overtop of the ends. Then I attached my closure, one part at each end, by stringing it onto the wire and doubling the wire over itself and twisting it bunches of times.