Free Beading Project: Wire and Bead Chain Using Vintage Metal Beads

I loved these curved metal beads from the July 2012 shipment of A Grain of Sand's Bead Hoard Curiosities Club. They reminded me of stringing macaroni onto yarn with my mother and sister when I was kid! But their lovely gold finish and their unusual curved shape made me wonder what would happen if I used them to make a wire and bead chain necklace. The result was an unusual, vintage-style beaded necklace that I can wear with just about anything.


  • 9 20mm curved gold vintage tube beads (A)
  • 18 3mm gold round beads (B)
  • 10 5mm gold jump rings
  • 8 feet gold craft wire, 20 gauge
  • Gold clasp of your choice


  • Combination pliers OR chain nose and round nose pliers
  • Wire cutter


Step 1: Working from your spool of wire, slide on 1 B, 1 A, and 1 B. Make a wrapped loop at the end of the wire, and push the beads against the loop.

Tip: When threading the curved bead on your wire, you might find it easier to use your pliers to gently push the wire through the bead.

Step 2: Cut your wire 1 1/2" from the other end of the beads.
Step 3: Make a wrapped loop at the other end of the link. Repeat until you have completed 9 links.
Step 4: Open a jump ring and string on two links. Close the jump ring. Use the jump rings to connect all 9 units. Attach one jump ring to each end of the necklace, and attach the clasp using those jump rings. Close securely.


Bead Happy,


For more great vintage beads, check out A Grain of Sand.

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Jennifer VanBenschoten

About Jennifer VanBenschoten

Born in New Jersey in 1974, I escaped to the Adirondacks for the first time in 1995, making it my permanent home in 2000.  I have been interested in beads, buttons and making jewelry as long as I can remember.  It's probably my mother's fault - she was a fiber artist and crochet historian, and whenever she ordered supplies from one mail order source, she would order a huge bag of assorted buttons and beads for me and my sister!    

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