Like fine jewels, gorgeous blue blooms and rosettes of Sedum cascade among a beaded wire framework that is a piece of art all its own. The teardrop outline at the back of the necklace adds interest at both front and back and accentuates any open-backed gown.
Floral designer Wendy Andrade, AIFD, NDSF, FBFA, shares her technique in her book Floral Accessories: Creative Designs with Wendy Andrade.
Once you’ve mastered the wire shaping and gluing, play with new combinations of blooms and materials. The necklace’s outline also can be customized to complement any neckline.
Cut six lengths – each approximately 50 inches – of plastic-coated wire.
Working with one length at a time, create a spiral at each end using jewelry pliers. Make the first turn of the spiral with the pliers, and continue with your fingers and thumb. Create up to three turns in each spiral.
Using artist paint brush handles in three diameters to wrap the wire around, create circles/loops of different sizes along the length of each wire.
Repeat until the entire length of wire contains these circles/loops. Repeat steps 2 through 4 on each of the remaining lengths of wire.
Open the neck ring, and thread one end through the loops on one of the wire lengths, working all the way to the opposite side. Link the other wire lengths onto this first one by interlocking the loops. Continue linking the wires together to create the desired outline, including the cascade at the back of the neck ring.
Cut six lengths of thin aluminum wire – approximately 34 inches each – and repeat steps 2 through 4 on each. This time, weave beads onto the wire among the loops as well.
Weave these lengths of beaded aluminum wire into the necklace by interlocking the loops with those of the plastic-coated wire. Glue jewel flowers and additional beads into the framework.
Glue more beads into the wire framework, as desired. As you work, try on the design to ensure it is balanced.
The flowers and small Sedum “blooms” rest within the wire loops. To adhere each floret, place liquid adhesive onto a cotton swab, dab the glue around the top and inside of a loop, and adhere the floret into the loop. Continue adding floral materials until the desired look is achieved.