After making the button closure necklace the other day, I happened to look over at one of my tables where more items were waiting to be put away and saw a lovely little bit of tubular Ndebele or Herringbone stitch that was languishing away in a beading tray. It was 4 inches long and as I looked at it I thought it would make a wonderful base portion for another button closure necklace.
Then I saw an agate I'd already wrapped with a jade round for a dangle (sterling wire and a decorative round bead headpin). I thought it would be fun to put the two together because of the colors of the stones.
How to hang the pendant from the woven piece was easily solved. I hammered a piece of 20-gauge sterling silver, wrapped it around a paintbrush, putting a second paintbrush near the first to get the wider bend where the pendant would hang. Then I curled each end of the wire into a tight spiral with the tip of my round-nosed pliers.
I threaded the Ndebele scrap through the wire wrapped spiral "tube," twisting the ends of the wire to tighten around the beading and show off the decorative spirals. The idea was to tighten the wire slightly to keep it from moving too much on the Ndebele, without depressing or distorting the beadwork.
I threw out the idea of having a button closure and went with a
handmade spiral clasp. (I thought any focal button would conflict with
the stone.) I used 20-gauge sterling silver round wire, formed a
wrapped loop at one end. I hammered both the loop and the spiral so it matched the texture of the wired wrapped around the Ndebele.
I used some SoftTouch beading wire to string the tubular Ndebele scrap so that the beadwork wouldn't take the stress and weight of the pendant. At each end of the Ndebele portion I also strung some small green glass disks which "capped" the tubular Ndebele and also brought in some green to assist the faceted jade ball at the base of the pendant. After the disks I strung a 2 mm silver round, the crimp bead, another 2 mm silver round, and then several 11/0 seed beads of the type used in the Ndebele. I passed the stringing wire back through the 2mm round, the crimp bead, the second 2 mm round, the discs and into the Ndebele. Then I crimped the crimp bead, trimmed and hid the wire. NOTE: on one end, before closing the 11/0 seed bead loop I ran the seed beads and stringing wire through the wrapped loop of the spiral hook.
Next I decided where I wanted the necklace to hang, measured the waxed cotton cord with allowance for a couple inches to fold back on each end to make loops. I made the loops by folding the cord back on itself and wrapping the end and the working portion of the cord together with 22-gauge sterling silver round wire. (I like to use half-hard wire.)
Now you have a fun, quick necklace (you did all the work when you did the leftover beadweaving!).
• Use any tubular beadwork for the focal portion of your necklace, but closed work will not show the stringing wire.
• String short segments of tubular beadwork interspersed with larger beads, pearls, etc.
• Move the clasp to the back of the neck for a symmetrical look. Make two equal cord lengths and loop them through the beaded loops before you finish the cord loops with wire wrapping. Then at the back end of the cords make a loop on one cord to attach your hook, and on the other cord's back end make a loop through which the hook can move and work.
• On the symmetrical necklace, instead of having the hook work in a cord loop add a wire-wrapped loop on the opposite cord end.
• To make an adjustable symmetrical necklace put a lobster claw clasp on one back cord end by looping the cord through the eye of the clasp. On the opposite back cord attach a short length (2 inches should be fine) of sterling silver chain by looping that cord end through one of the end links of your chain. The links should be large enougth that you can clip the lobster claw clasp into a link easily. Be sure to make an attractive dangle for the last link of the chain, to hang down your neck/back, when the necklace is closed.