5 Cool Ideas For Hot Summer Necklace Making Projects

I love making beaded necklaces, and when I sit down to design a piece, it’s usually a necklace. For a few years, my necklace making projects were all big, bold, and showy — the bigger, the better. But lately, I’m starting to think differently about how I like my necklaces. There’s a lot of beauty to be found in making a necklace with just a single beaded rope, or one stunning pendant and a simple chain. And of course, any good necklace making project can also help you learn new-to-you beading stitches and jewelry-making techniques! Check out my five suggestions for stretching your creative necklace making muscles a little bit this summer:

Chenille stitch is a new favorite beading technique of mine, so I love how Phyllis Dintenfass uses it in her Pearly Kaleidoscope Necklace. The subtle color gradations in this piece appeal to my inner artist, too, and I love the idea of making this beaded necklace in a graduated monochromatic color scheme.
Feel like you need a little more sparkle for your summer? The Sunset Spiral Necklace by Wendy Lueder is made using Russian spiral — another of my favorite beaded rope patterns — and uses three colors of crystal bicones plus two sizes of glittering seed beads. If you’ve never tried Russiain spiral before, you’ll love how quickly it works up in this dramatic necklace making project!
St. Petersburg with a twist, anyone? I love the simple, looping lines of the St. Petersburg Spiral Necklace by Samantha Kilgore. Just when I thought I’d seen everything you can do with St. Petersburg chain, I found this lovely and innovative variation on an old favorite.
I’m always inspired by the work of bead artist Maggie Meister, and her Bramble Necklace is the perfect example of how to combine the very simple and the very complex in a beaded necklace project. Using simple sculptural elements, Maggie has created a beautifully balanced piece of wearable art that can be worn by just about anyone.
Have you been bit by the soutache bug yet? I experimented with basic soutache techniques earlier this year, and I have to admit, it hooked me pretty quickly. Miriam Shimon’s Aurora Pendant Necklace is a wonderful project for anyone looking to practice their soutache skills while making a classic beaded necklace for almost any occasion.

Another technique I’ve also been using to create beaded necklaces lately is the ancient Japanese braiding technique called kumihimo. Thanks to a couple of classes with my bead buddy Jill Wiseman, I’ve become thoroughly addicted to this soothing, versatile jewelry-making technique. Kumihimo braids can be used to showcase sparkling strands of crystal beads, or they can be made with simple satin cord to show off a spectacular beaded slider.

If you’re looking to get started with beaded kumihimo, there’s no better place to learn than at home with the Kumihimo Ultimate Collection — everything you need to learn how to do beaded kumihimo right at home! Each kit includes a copy of Jill Wiseman’s Designer of the Year Series: Kumihimo With Beads, a kumihimo disc, and all of the beads, cord, bobbins, glue, and findings you need to learn how to do kumihimo from an expert. Get your Kumihimo Ultimate Collection today, but be warned: once you discover how much fun beaded kumihimo can be, there’s no going back — your necklace making projects will never be the same!

Do you have a new favorite technique for necklace making? How do you breathe new life into your old beading techniques? Leave a comment here on the Beading Daily blog and share your thoughts and ideas with us!

Bead Happy,


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