31 March 2011

D.I.Y: Aboriginal Headdress Necklace


When I was in University, I used to make Aboriginal inspired jewellery and sell my creations at a local boutique. After university, I got busy with my 'real job' and stopped making my line, then called Leotie Jewelry. 

Since moving to London, I’ve been feeling the urge to get back to it again, but I hadn’t been able to find the supplies I need.

Luckily, I came across some old familiars in a Danish haberdashery and was able to create this little number, which is a great accessory for those slightly classic, old faithful outfits we all adore. And the best part it, this necklace is a fun and easy D.I.Y for all you creative critters out there.

What You Need:
Glass Pony Beads (the yellow beads you see)
Plastic Crow Beads (the fat round beads you see in black and red)
Plastic Melon Beads (the long black beads you see)
About 14 Number 2 Safety Pins
19 ga Craft Wire
Suede Lacing
Scissors
Pliers
Glue
Feathers (fake would work better than the pheasant feathers I used for durability’s sake)

Instructions:
1) Open each pin and string 1 light glass pony bead and 1 black melon bead. Close the pin and squeeze the head with pliers, flattening it so it cannot open again.

2) Cut off 6” from the wire. Using your pliers, put a small loop in one end only big enough to string the suede lacing through.

3) On wire, string on 1 glass pony bead, then run the wire thru the small end of the beaded pin. Then string on 1 red plastic crow bead, and again, string the wire through the next beaded pin, continuing until all the beaded pins have been strung. Finish with 1 last glass pony bead and make another loop in the wire to hold your work together.

4) With the remaining wire, put a small loop in one end (like you did in step 2) and string one glass pony bead.

5) String on 1 black plastic crow bead, then run the wire thru the larger end of a beaded pin. Then string 2 black crow beads and run the wire thru the next beaded pin. Continue with this pattern until all the pins are strung. Finish with one last glass pony bead.

6) Before securing your work, shape the wire into a half curve and trim the wire off about half an inch beyond the last bead strung. Then make a loop in the wire as you did before.

7) Attach the two wire loops at the top (the the wire that holds together the fat end of the beaded pins) so they are interlocking the back of the headdress so it keeps it’s curved shape.

8) Sort your feathers from smallest to biggest. Starting with the smallest one at the back of the headdress (where you have just attached the two wire loops), place a drop of glue on the bottom of the quill and slip it into the top of the black melon bead.  Continue this process, smallest feathers at the back, bigger feathers at the front, until you have filled all the melon beads with feathers.

9) Cut off a two 4” pieces of suede lacing. Tie the lacing to the bottom wire loops at the back of the head dress. Slide a few beads of your choice onto the bottom and tie a knot to secure the beads.

10) Figure out how long you want your necklace to be and cut some suede lacing accordingly. Tie a lark’s head knot between the two centre front pins and try er’ on for size!

 I would love to see some creative renditions on this craft! So please do share pictures if you give it a go!

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