Illusion Necklace Tutorial
Our Illusion Necklace class has been a favorite for over ten years. It’s quick and easy to make with basic beading skills. It’s a great project for using up your left over beads. Plus, it’s highly customizable. Try making all three strands the same length for a fuller, more youthful look. Try a single strand for a subtle, casual piece. Have fun making this project your own!
SoftFlex Medium beading wire
Assorted beads of choice (varying sizes and shapes)
Two 3 inch lengths of 24 gauge wire for wire wrapping
1 each trigger clasp and 6mm closed jump ring
1x1mm micro crimps (Approximately 100)
3x3mm crimps (2)
Needle nose pliers and round nosed pliers
Mighty Crimp tool
Organize your assorted beads into two or three strands worth of design on your work surface.
Cut approximately 20 inches of SoftFlex beading wire and gather your micro crimps. (I strongly recommend sterling silver or 14K gold filled crimps. They are a soft metal, so they seal down without cracking or breaking.) Place the center bead grouping from your longest strand design on the beading wire. Add a 1x1mm micro crimp on each side of the center bead grouping. Be sure to center this bead grouping carefully, as it sets the stage for your entire design.
Using your needle nose pliers, flat crimp one of the micro crimps.
Move the second micro crimp as close as possible to the bead and crimp it flat. The bead grouping should now be held firmly in place on the wire.
Decide how far apart you would like your bead groupings spaced on the strand. Carefully measure, and place a micro crimp at the appropriate place on the beading wire to the right of the center bead.
Use your needle nose pliers to flat crimp the micro crimp into place. Repeat your measurements on the left side of the center bead and flat crimp there as well. This creates spaces to add additional beads. Then add another crimp on each side of the new beads to keep them in place.
Continue adding beads until your first strand is complete.
Using the same instructions, finish all of your desired strands. You can make each strand longer than the last for a sophisticated look, or you can make all the strands the same length for a more contemporary look.
Make a small wire wrapped loop on one end of each of the lengths of 24 gauge wire. The loops must be small enough to fit easily into the cones.
Carefully arrange your three strands to lay the way you would like. When you are happy with the arrangement, pass one end of all three strands through a 3×3 crimp, then through a wire wrapped loop and back through the crimp.
Using the Mighty Crimping tool, crimp the 3x3mm crimp closed. You MUST use the Mighty Crimping tool for this step, as no other size of crimping tool will work on a 3x3mm crimp.
Trim off the excess SoftFlex wire. Feed the end of the 24 gauge wire into the cone.
The cone should cover all of the crimping and wire wrapping.
Wire wrap the trigger clasp to the end of the 24 gauge wire.
Repeat the entire process on the other side of the necklace. This time, wire wrap the closed jump ring to the end of the 24 gauge wire. This serves as the loop for the trigger clasp.
Here is your finished necklace! Happy Beading!