According to The Beading Gem's Journal, the Tree of Life is an ancient religious symbol used in folklore, religions and mythology all over the world. It appears in the Bible's Book of Genesis and was part of the old Norse religion. The ancient Armenians emblazoned their armour and fortresses with the Tree of Life symbol from the 13th to the sixth century BCE as a symbol of immortality. Modern uses of the Tree of Life symbol include as a method of showing evolutionary lines in science. The Tree of Life pendant is a popular design among jewellery makers.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Cylindrical object
- 18G wire
- 24G or 26G wire
- Wire cutter
- Chain nose pliers
- Stone chips in tree/leaf colours
- Jump ring (optional)
- Necklace chain
Loop the 18G wire around a cylindrical object to create a perfect circle, leaving the ends loose. This circle will form the outline of your pendant.
Bend one end of the wire upright with pliers and bend the other end around it. Wrap the now-shorter wire end around the upright wire end with your pliers. Make a small wire loop with the pliers and wrap the wire again.
Cut three feet of 25G or 26G wire into six to eight nine-inch lengths. The number of short wires needed will depend on the size of the circle created in Step 1. Wrap one end of each length around the frame about three or four times. Leave the other ends loose. These wires will be used to thread the stone chips, and should be arranged together near the wire loop created in Step 2.
Thread the nature-coloured stone chips on the lengths of wire. Hold the frame upside down so the chips will move to the tip of the pendant, making adding and removing chips a lot simpler. Stone chips for this type of bead work are available online.
Position the wires in shapes to suggest tree branches. Twist all the lengths of wire together to form a tree trunk. Trim the wires close to the base of the frame. Separate the wires into two groups and wrap them around the frame to suggest the roots of the tree.
Feed the necklace chain through the wrapped wire loop created in Step 2. A jump ring can also be used.
Tips and warnings
- 20G wire can be used in place of 18G wire if you find 18G to be too tough.
- Use caution when working with wire to avoid injury. Have someone help you cut the wire if necessary.
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