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Exclusive Project

Single Strand Necklace by Sarah Millsop

When it comes to making jewellery, with kits like these from TotallyBeads, it has never been easier! Totally Beads include some fantastic designs in their project kits, but today Sarah takes you through a simple single strand necklace that will give you the perfect starting project. As your confidence grows you can move onto our ‘take it further’ project and start adding multiple strands with ease. This project will teach you how to create a single strand necklace, but you can adapt the top tips and methods to bracelets too.

TOP TIP: always allow approx. 1inch for your clasp and findings at the end. If you want to create a 20inch necklace, you will only need to bead 19inches. This doesn’t normally matter too much with necklaces, but when making bracelets it can make a big difference to the finished look and wearing it!

You will need:

  • TotallyBeads Popcorn Jewellery kit OR TotallyBeads Popcorn Bead Collection OVER 4000 beads
  • Round nosed jewellery pliers
  • Flush cutters
  • Flat nosed pliers
  • Dressmakers pin or needle


  1. Take your beading wire from your kit and slide a callote/crimp cover onto the end. You will need to thread the wire UP through the hinge into the cover to ensure it will close in the right position. Add a crimp bead and thread the wire back DOWN through the hinge of your cover and leave approx. 2cm tail. Squash the crimp bead using your flat nosed pliers. This will act as a stopper, but to give us a professional finish, slide the cover up the crimp and close it so the crimp bead it totally hidden. You can now start adding your beads to your wire.

    I have alternated a seed bead and a pearl using 54 pearls. Hide the 2cm tail into your first few beads for a very neat finish.
  2. We will need to secure the end in the same way, with a crimp bead and cover, but tension and neatness at this stage is really important. We want the beads to be as close together as possible without any gaps, so just check they are all in line. Add your cover, again threading UP through the hinge. Thread on your crimp bead and come back DOWN through the hinge. This time, before we crush the bead, you will need to thread the wire tail (again approx. 2cm worth) through the first few beads. This will give you extra strength and a very professional finish to you work.
  3. It can be tricky getting the wire tight and close to the crimp cover whilst ensuring there are no gaps in your necklace. So hold a pin or needle in the loop of wire above your cover. Pull the tail of the wire, that you have re thread though the beads, as tightly as possible, the pin will allow the wire to get as near as possible. Once you cant pull it any closer, remover the pin and give one last pull to tighten any looseness. Crush your crimp bead and close the cover to encase it.
  4. The loops in the top of the crimp cover are for your jumprings and to attach your clasp. Twist the jumprings open using a pair of pliers, thread on your crimp cover and a clasp (to one side) and twist closed. Make sure you have the two sides of the jumpring touching for a strong neat finish.

Taking it further: Multi Strand Necklace

  1. If you would like to create a multistrand necklace, you need to be careful with the way the beads will sit once worn. You can just lay your necklace flat and create 3 different lengths, as they will drape quite differently once placed around your neck. For the neatest finish, follow this bead count and lengths.
    You can string each strand separately and add the multiple layers to your jumpring.

    1st strand: 18inch strand of bead: 54 pearls with 1 seed bead alternately
    2nd strand: 18.5 inch strand of beads: 49 pearls with 2seed beads alternately (this gives a nice point of difference and added design detail)
    3rd strand: 20inch strand of beads: 51 Rondelle crystals with 3 seed beads alternately
  2. You will need to add an extra jumpring to one side for your clasp to catch, as there is not enough room once all three strands have been added.
    If you would like to make more layers, you will just need a larger jumpring.

    I hope you enjoy creating some fabulous necklaces, there are some useful hints and tips for you to achieve the perfect finish…so have fun, be brave and start designing your own accessories!