Tuesday, June 21, 2016
Summer Fun Mermaid Necklace by Michelle McCarthy
This was my 5th year exhibiting at the Bead and Button Show in Milwaukee, WI. Since I man my booth on my own, I don't get a lot of shopping time. So that means I usually pick up artist goodies that are my booth neighbors and that's a great thing! I love all things nautical and sea life, so I had to have this cute little mermaid made by fellow ceramic bead artist, Diane Hawkey. I paired up the green in her tail to a green scallop shell and 10mm bead that I made. This necklace combines many of my favorite techniques: wire wrapping, knotting with waxed linen and a sea theme. Here are my supplies gathered up:
I assembled the pendant first. I like 20g wire the best. It doesn't hurt my fingers when working with it and it holds it shape pretty well. Leave the tails long after wrapping your loops. To cover the wire loop in the scallop shell, I curved the wire into a spiral and pressed it over the wire loop to hide it. To get the look of the wire wrap around the spacer and gemstone bead, just loosely wrap the wire around them in a downward motion and secure the wire wrap around the bottom wrap. I think this adds a bit of pizzazz.
Next I cut a 24" piece of beige waxed linen. At the middle point, I over hand knotted it to the mermaids top loop. Then lay out your gemstone beads in a pattern you like. Now you simply string and overhand knot between each bead. I did 2 knots between each bead because the bead holes were a bit larger. I finished off the design with a piece of chain. I think it is comfortable to have chain around the neck area and it is a good "fill in" when you only have a partial bead strand to work with like I did here. I decided to put the toggle on the side for fun and added a pop of the green there with a ceramic spacer bead.
Instead of cutting the wax linen close to the knot, I left the tails long and tied a feminine little bow there. Since waxed linen is lightly coated with wax, you don't need to glue the knots. The wax seals the knot securely. I love that! Here's a close up of the toggle area: