Make This:

Draped Chain Necklace

I love using chain in jewelry. One of the things you learn to think about in drawing classes is line weight – where to use thick and thin lines. Chain can be considered in the same way, used as lines of different weight to create different effects. In this case I’m making a draped chain necklace using an antique looking gunmetal chain to highlight some faceted opaque glass beads in warm, muted tones.

Draped Chain Necklace

Draped Chain Necklace

Supplies:
– beads – I used 17 pieces of a crystal cut glass that are about 12-14mm, but you could use a lot of different things here
– chain in 2 weights – a thin chain for the draping, a heavier one for the part that wraps around you neck
– jump rings
– craft wire – about 18 gauge is good
– clasp
– needle nose pliers
– round nose pliers
– wire cutters
– a few sewing pins or pieces of wire

 

I used gunmetal chains and jump rings, but I couldn’t find a sturdy wire in gunmetal, so I used an antiqued brass. I don’t think the contrast is too obvious.


Related Tutorials:

Using Jump Rings
Wire-Linked Beads


 

Draped Chain Necklace

Make all of your beads into links as shown. If you’re not sure how, use the Bead Links Tutorial.
Draped Chain Necklace

Arrange your links in the order you want them. I scrambled these then straightened them out a few different times until I liked the semi-random arrangement.

Draped Chain Necklace

Decide how long you want your loops to be. I went with 5 inches. Cut a piece of chain to that length.

Draped Chain Necklace

Use your pins to help be sure you cut all the other lengths of chain to the same length. If you’re linking chain the same way I did you’ll need the number of beads you have minus 1. (You could choose to have more beads in each loop of chain, this would change the number of loops you need.)

Draped Chain Necklace

Arrange everything to double-check your counts.

Draped Chain Necklace

Hook a piece of chain onto the far left loop of the first bead.

Draped Chain Necklace

Attach another piece of chain between the two beads at the left end.

Draped Chain Necklace

It should look like this.

Draped Chain Necklace

Loop the far left chain up to connect at this point. Also add another piece of chain. Try to be sure the first piece of chain isn’t twisted when you connect things.

Draped Chain Necklace

Also make sure that all of the chain pieces are attached on the same side so they’ll all hang down. It’s easy to twist up your main bead chain if you’re not being very careful not to.

Draped Chain Necklace

When everything is together close your jump ring.

Draped Chain Necklace

Do the same thing with the next link. Be sure to bring the loop of chain in front of the straight pieces every time so your loops hang the same way.

Draped Chain Necklace

You’ll run out of chain pieces before you run out of beads.

Draped Chain Necklace

Finish up the farthest left chain at this point.

Draped Chain Necklace

Finish the last piece of chain on the right side of the farthest right bead.

Draped Chain Necklace

All linked up it should look like this. Decide how long the necklace should be and add the heavier chain to finish the necklace.

Draped Chain Necklace

Don’t forget the clasp at the center back.

It’s ready to wear!

Draped Chain Necklace

Draped Chain Necklace Draped Chain Necklace Draped Chain Necklace