Get creative with a variety of decorative jewellery components to make chunky necklace designs. Look for beads, glass nuggets and faceted crystals in sizes larger than 10mm to design chunky necklaces. Create strands by stringing the components onto jewellery cording or by connecting one bead or stone to another with jump rings. Employ the same techniques to make chunky necklace strands ranging from choker style to opera length.
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Large Beaded Necklaces
Large wooden, ceramic, crystal or metal beads in sizes larger than 10mm work to make a chunky necklace. To give chunky beaded necklaces more flexibility, separate the large beads with smaller 4mm to 6mm beads, or even seed beads. Ideas for chunky beaded necklaces include pairing 12mm round wooden beads with 6mm copper beads to create a back-to-nature style. Combining faceted 10mm oval crystal beads with 4mm round crystal beads of a contrasting colour creates a striking necklace design. To string large beads onto a necklace strand, cut a length of beading wire a few inches longer than the desired necklace length. Attach a clasp to one end of the wire using crimp beads, slide the design beads onto the open end and then attach the second clasp section to the end of the strand.
Glass Nugget Necklaces
Create chunky necklace designs with sea glass nuggets, stained glass nuggets or a combination of the two. Wrap the nuggets in a fitted, loose wire spiral using 22- to 24-gauge jewellery wire. Make loops at both ends of the wire using round nose pliers. To make a loop, bend the wire at a 90-degree angle, then hold the bent tip and twist it into a loop. Connect the wired nuggets with jump rings. Connect the last nuggets on each end of the necklace strand to a clasp section with a jump ring.
Chunky Gemstone Necklaces
Tumbled, polished gemstones make distinctive chunky necklace designs. Tumbled gemstone beads resemble cut and faceted gemstones in colour only. The large stone beads are a more natural and less expensive way to incorporate real gemstones into your jewellery wardrobe. Pair gemstone beads with smaller, faceted crystal beads to add sparkle and fluidity to the necklace design. For example, separate large amethyst gemstone beads with 4mm lavender crystal beads to create a chunky necklace. String the beads on wire or on soft monofilament line.
Select large rivoli stones in sizes ranging from 12mm to 18mm and set them inside rivoli bezels with double connectors to make a chunky necklace design. Rivoli stones are faceted crystals that often taper to a point on the back side. Available in a variety of colours, rivoli stones are not drilled to string on a necklace, you must set them in a fitted bezel designed specifically for rivoli stones or create your own bezel with seed beads. Rivoli bezels are available in metal finishes such as gold or silver, as well as in a variety of stylised designs. Jeweller's glue holds a rivoli stone inside the bezel. Connect the bezels together using metal jump rings to create a chunky necklace strand.
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