Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace, Contemporary Wire Jewelry. Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop. I have a true love of timeless design and jewelry that will transition to any outfit with ease.
Challenge Necklace
by Susan LeGuyader
  • Category: Contemporary
  • Technique(s): Chain Making, Making Loops
  • Skill Level: Beginner
I have a true love of timeless design and jewelry that will transition to any outfit with ease. This necklace represents a bit of both of those for me.
My main idea for this necklace though, was to see if I could create a whole necklace with wire and the only purchased component was beads. I used annealed steel wire, as it isn't a material used as often in jewelry. You see far more silver or gold. I also love copper wire and this design would look fantastic in copper as well.
I chose a neutral color palette for the beads. Interesting shapes, different textures and colors create a unique appearance yet unifies the design. The best thing about this design is the versatility. You can make it long or shorter, use different wire or all the same color of bead. Your options are open.

Materials

20 Gauge Round Half Hard .925 Sterling Silver Wire
H8-20H
  • Lesson Quantity: 3.00 feet
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 5FT
  • Price: $12.85
  • Gold Club Price: $9.64
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Tools

WireJewelry - Ultimate Wire-Pliers Jewelry Pliers with Case, Set of 5
G15-20
  • G15-20
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $170.72
  • Gold Club Price: $128.04
Out of Stock
Wubbers Large Bail Making Pliers
G2-1303
  • G2-1303
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $27.97
  • Gold Club Price: $20.98
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Instructions
Step 1
The chain is make from 20 gauge annealed steel wire. You will need to cut 16 pieces of wire, 3 ¼" long.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 2
Center each piece of wire on the 8mm barrel side of the bail making pliers and bend into a "U" shape.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 3
With chain nose pliers, tight against the barrel of the pliers, squeeze the wires together. You should end up with a lollipop shape.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 4
At the base of the loop, use the chain nose pliers to bend at a 90 degree angle
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 5
Place the 6mm barrel side of the pliers at the end of the wire "lollipop" and roll towards the loop. This will create a link that has two loops, perpendicular to each other.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 6
Using your hammer and bench block or anvil, lightly tap the 8mm single loop.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 7
Make 16 links.
Step 8
Holding the link in one hand and the 3mm bail making pliers in the other, gently lift the double wire loop (6mm). You will slid the 8mm loop from another link through the double 6mm loops that you opened. Check and make sure that the links are facing the same direction. Use the barrel of the 3mm bail pliers to gently close the double 6mm loops. You will need to turn it around and tighten each loop, to align them.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 9
Connect all 16 links to create the chain for the top of the necklace. Set aside.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 10
The beaded links are made with 20 gauge annealed steel wire as well. You will be making 19 beaded wrap links.
Step 11
Cut 19 pieces of 20 gauge steel wire, 4" long. This gives just enough extra to handle.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 12
At the 1" mark, make a 90 degree angle at one end of the wire.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 13
With your round nose pliers, make a wrap loop. With the remaining wire, you should be able to make 3 wraps around the base wire.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 14
Slide roughly ½" of beads onto the wire. The combination is up to you.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 15
To make the wrap loop on the other end of the link, you will need to leave about 3mm of space from the top of the last bead to where you start the loop. I use with of my chain nose pliers to measure. Make another 90 degree angle with the remaining wire and another wrapped loop. You will have enough wire to make 3 loops to finish the link.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 16
Trim excess wire and tuck the end snug to the link. Check for any rough cuts and file if necessary.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 17
Make 19 wrapped beaded links
Step 18
I like to make my jump rings. You can certainly use purchased jump rings for this project. You will need to make certain that they are made with heavy duty wire and have an inside diameter of 3mm.
Step 19
To make the jump rings, unwind about 16" of wire from the 16 gauge annealed steel wire spool.
Step 20
With the 3mm/1.5mm bail making pliers, place the end of the wire at the base of the 3mm barrel. Start winding, keeping the newly added wire at the base of the pliers. You will see the wraps move up the barrel and off of the pliers. When you have 21 loops, pull the wire of the barrel of the pliers and cut.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 21
There are many methods to cutting jump rings. Since I needed so few, I used flush cutters. You could also use a jeweler's saw or a jump ring maker. With your old flush cutters, cut each jump ring.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 22
With your hammer and bench block, tap each jump ring to flatten.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 23
With your 2 pair of chain nose pliers, rotate the each jump ring open. File any rough edges smooth.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 24
To assemble the 2 beaded link chains, gently rotate a jump ring and add 2 beaded links. Continue the chain by opening a jump ring and adding the growing chain and a new link. The short chain has 9 link. The long chain has 10 links. Finish each section of chain with jump rings on each end.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 25
The clasp and connecting pieces are the same. You will need to make 2 of the "S" shape pieces and then a hook. The "S" shape pieces are made with 16 gauge wire. Cut 2 pieces of wire, 6" long. With your sturdy round nose pliers, grasp the end of the wire and start a spiral. Guide the wire with your non-dominant hand, curling the wire into a spiral. Including the center, I made 3 circles inside. You might need to use your chain nose pliers to reposition the inside circles. Then to complete the top of the "S" shape, bring the wire up and around. Leaving about 1 ½", cut the excess wire. Grasp the end of the wire with the very end of the round nose pliers and make a tight spiral. Leave enough space in the center to add a jump ring.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 26
With the 2 "S" connectors complete, use your hammer and bench block to tap them flat.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 27
For the hook part of the clasp, cut 3" of 16 gauge wire. With chain nose pliers, bend the very end of the wire over about 2mm, and squeeze closed. With the 6mm barrel of the bail making pliers, curve the wire over and down, into a hook shape. Switch to round nose pliers and complete the loop along the back side of the hook. Cut excess wire. Look for any rough edges and file smooth.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 28
With the bench block and hammer, tap flat.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 29
For final assembly, lay out each section and piece. At one end of the chain links, add a jump ring to the 8mm flat loop and attach to the top of the "S" wire link.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 30
At the other side, use the 3mm bail pliers and gently open the 6mm double loops and slide onto the top of the second "S" wire link. Close the double loops.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 31
Open the jump ring attached to the long section of beaded link chain. Attach to the bottom of the first "S" link. You might need to use your chain nose pliers to adjust the "s" link so the jump ring fits. After you have attached it to the "S" link, also add the jump ring for the short section of beaded link chain.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 32
Open the jump ring attached to the long section of beaded link chain. Add the hook clasp and the short section of beaded link chain. Close the jump ring.
Susan LeGuyader's Challenge Necklace - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Making Chain, Chain Making , Loops, Wire Loop, Wrapped Wire Loop, challenge necklace
Step 33
Inspect your links and chain. Look for rough edges that need filed. Make sure the all of the jump rings are closed and aligned. Check each chain link and make sure the 6mm double loops are aligned and closed.