Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Industrial Chic Necklace DIY

This is a statement necklace that is actually Anthro-inspired and you can see their version here.  This is a bold accessory that incorporates silver chain with stainless steel washers.  I've been wanting to try making some hardware store jewelry and when I got the inspiration for this piece, I couldn't pass up the opportunity.  It was very different from any other necklaces I've made in the past but it ended up being very fun and inexpensive. 

Stainless steel washers (in 3cm & 2cm diameters)
Silver cable chain
Acrylic paint
Paint brush
Jump rings
Glass bead
Head pin
2 Sets of jewelry pliers (round or flat nose)
Jewelry wire cutters
Paper plate

I purchased my washers from Lowe's and they come in several different finishes, but I opted for stainless steel because I thought they would be the least likely to cause an allergic reaction.  I bought three 3cm washers (37 cents each) and three 2cm washers (20 cents each).  You can buy whatever size you prefer but I wouldn't go too big because they do add a bit of weight to the necklace. 

I decided to paint the larger washers and leave the smaller ones as they are.  I used some Folk Art acrylic paint in a lovely blue called Ocean Cruise that I purchased from Joann's.  I put a little paint on my paper plate and used one of my son's Crayola paint brushes to evenly spread the paint onto the washers.  Then, I let them dry overnight.  The bottle says you only need to wait an hour, but this was a late night project, so I decided to hit the hay while my washers dried.  I didn't have any at the time, but I would recommend using a sealant, such as Mod Podge, over the acrylic paint to prevent the chain from scratching it off.

The next day, I got to work linking the washers.  I cut four 2 1/2 inch lengths of cable chain and I used two sets of pliers to carefully open up one of the links at the end so that the chain could be looped around one of the painted 3cm washers and one of the non-painted 2cm washers.  The tricky part was connecting the other end of the chain to the open link.  It seemed to work best if the two washers were lying on my work surface so I wasn't battling the weight of the washers while linking the two ends of the chain. 

I repeated this step three times so that there were two loops of chain on each set of washers.

Next, I cut two more lengths of chain that were about 2 1/2 inches long to connect the smaller washers to another painted 3cm washer.  This time I just used one chain loop to connect each washer. 

Two more pieces of chain were cut in about 2 1/2 inch lengths and they were used to connect the center blue washer to another small washer. 

The last piece that needed to be connected was the blue glass teardrop bead, which I slid onto the headpin and used the roundnose pliers to create a loop at the top.  If you are not familiar with creating a simple loop with a headpin, I recommend watching this video.  Also, you can use just about any kind of bead for your center drop - I think a round one would look just as cute!  The two lengths of chain were linked to form a loop around the washer and then I used a jump ring to connect the teardrop bead to the chain loops.

At this point, all of the hard work in creating this necklace is finished and you just need to attach two longer lengths of chain to both ends and attach a clasp.  I cut two pieces of chain that were 13 inches long.  I took one of them, folded it in half, wrapped the looped end around one of the painted washers and threaded the loose ends of the chain through the loop.  Then, the two end pieces of chain were connected to a toggle clasp.  The same steps were repeated for the other side.

And there you have it - a fun, new accessory!  Who knew you could find more items to fill up your jewelry box with after a trip to the home improvement store?

Hope this tutorial has inspired you to create your own one of a kind piece of jewelry.  Thanks for stopping by!



  1. Replies
    1. Thanks Jennifer! I just hopped on over to your blog - looks like it's full of fun ideas. Will definitely be back to visit and check out your crafts.