Friday, October 11, 2013

DIY Pearl Embellished Strand

Above is De Petra's "Pearl Embellished Strand," which was selling for $378 at Anthropologie. It's sold out now. But you could always make your own - for about $30. I spent a bit more, but that was because I bought a whole string of pearls instead of just buying 15 or 16 individual pearls - both because it's a better price, generally, to do so, and because I came across a string of cheaply-marked freshwater pearls at the bead store.
In this necklace, the pearls are strung on beading thread (or silk, if you're feeling fancy). Bits of mauve-grey thread (probably silk) are twisted around this thread (the one on which the pearls are strung) two or three times, and then the ends are tied in a square knot. Then one or two clear glass beads are slipped onto the ends of each of this accent-thread, followed by a brass crimp bead which is crimped to keep the accent thread from unraveling (and to keep that clear glass seed bead secure. Wash, rinse, repeat - between each of the pearls. The heavy brass beads are probably from Africa - if you've got a local bead shop that imports African brass beads, you should be able to find similar beads (same goes for those rough-hewn, heavy brass rings/rounds). If you're in Seattle, Beadworld has these items. I used deerskin lace (1/4" wide) for the basic stringing material, because it's lighter weight and easier to work through those brass beads - but you could also use cowhide, and save a few pennies.
Admittedly, the ends are way longer on my necklace than the original. It would be easy to just slide those three metal beads on each end up a few inches, re-knot, and cut off the excess, but for right now, I'm leaving the ends long. I like the way it looks. This was a fun project, totally the kind of thing that can be made in an afternoon craft session.

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