Copper + Agate Gemstone Necklace Tutorial
Tutorial by Adrianne Surian
|This design is an intermediate DIY jewelry project, but it does make up quickly! If you know your way around your pliers, you can re-create this design in about 10 minutes. These agate slice beads are all unique - no two look exactly alike! This means your finished necklace will truly be a one-of-a-kind statement piece.
|Suggested Tools and Materials:
Please note: some items pictured may not be available from Happy Mango Beads. Please see the above links for suggestions.
|Prepare the focal piece by choosing an agate bead that has one fairly flat side. The one used in this tutorial is almost triangular, but every bead will be different! The bent copper disc bead will need to be bent further so that it slips over the flat side of the agate bead with the holes aligned. The copper is quite hard and takes a little bit of muscle, but it’s SO worth it for the finished look! The copper bead is plated with an anti-tarnish finish. Manipulating the metal WILL cause this finish to flake off. While the look is almost exactly the same, over time, the copper will take on a bit of a patina (like an old penny). This is just a caution that you’re not doing anything wrong if the finish comes off.
|Form your focal bead pendant by first creating a loop that will be at the bottom of the bead (so that you can attach your smaller bead charm at the end). About an inch from one end of a 6-8 inch piece of copper wire, wrap the wire around one side of your round nose pliers. Take the short end and coil it around the longer part of the wire, forming a loop as shown above. Trim any excess wire with wire cutters.
|Next, slip the agate bead onto the wire with the loop at the bottom. Align the holes and place the copper disc at the top of the agate bead. Create one more large loop at the top end of the agate bead, and trim away any excess wire. Tip: try to position the loop at the top so that it can double as your pendant bail! If it’s not oriented that way, you can also add a large jump ring to the pendant before stringing it.
|Next, make a small bead charm using coordinating beads. Simply stack them onto the head pin, and make a wrapped loop at the top, just as you did when working with the agate bead. Connect the smaller charm to the loop at the bottom of the agate bead with a 5mm jump ring.
|Finally, string your pendant onto a 30″ length of coordinating copper chain. You can of course modify this design to use an 18″ chain – or whatever length you prefer!
|Feel free to play with the colors and finishes to get the look that’s just right for you.