You know how some new fashion comes on the scene and you think, “I’ll never wear that! Like, never gonna happen, my friend?” Yeah, you know. I think that all the time, and every once in awhile I’m actually right.
Take the whole tassel jewelry thing. It’s just a fad and not your style, right? Or, it wasn’t your style until some suede ones start popping up here and there. Then it’s all, “Hello, texture and leather and we’re going to be the best of friends!” So here we are jumping on the bandwagon. And what could be better than a tutorial to make your own jewelry tassel that you can easily switch from one chain to the next? It makes accessorizing easy, and it’s a great gift idea too! Christmas is coming, as you well know. So, for today I have an interchangeable tassel necklace tutorial to share with you.
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Supplies for the Tassel Necklace
I have a habit of picking up suede and/or leather items at thrift shops when I find them at a reasonable price. I decided to make this soft suede necklace when styling the Long Grove Dot Top for Glamour Farms a few weeks ago. You can find that post here if you want to get a look at the necklace styled with an entire outfit. My plan was to cut strips of suede and make a tassel necklace, until I realized the entire shirt was laced together with suede lacing and I could just use it. If you don’t happen to have an old suede shirt just laying around here is some similar soft lacing.
- Soft suede lacing similar to this – 3 yards
- Jewelry chain similar to this – 30″ length in antique bronze
- Jewelry stringing wire similar to this – 1 foot
- Bead cap cone similar to this – 1 piece
- Jewelry crimp tubes similar to these – 2 tubes
- Jump ring in similar to these – 1
- Jewelry lobster clasp similar to these – 1
- Assorted beads to add as desired
- Sewing scissors similar to these
- Jewelry crimper similar to this
- Neelde-nose pliers with a wire cutter similar to these
- Seams Right, optional
Making the Tassel
- Find something the desired length of your finished tassel to wrap your suede lacing around. I used my handy little Seams Right for a length of about 3 1/2″. Start at one end and wrap until you run out of lacing.
- Thread your 12″ of beading wire under the suede at the top of your tassel. The bottom of your tassel will have the loose ends of your lacing.
3. Thread both ends of the wire through the crimp tube and crimp to form two smaller tubes, each one holding one of the wires. For more detailed instructions on using a crimp tool check out this video from Fire Mountain Gems.
4. The second step in the crimping process folds the two wires back on themselves, making them secure so the wire won’t slip.
Adding the Beads
5. Next, add a bead cap/cone to the top of the tassel for a finished look.
6. Add extra beads above the tassel as desired, just in case you aren’t having enough fun already.
7. Make the very last bead a little smaller, so that the final crimp tube doesn’t slide into the center of the larger beads. Above the smaller bead, thread the wires through a final crimp tube.
8. Using pliers, open up a jump ring and thread through the clasp.
9. Thread the wires through the jump ring.
10. Rethread both wires back through the crimp tube and repeat the crimping process keeping the threaded and re-threaded wires together.
The Finishing Touches
11. Cut the wires so they can be tucked inside the top bead at least to the center of the bead. This part takes a little patience, but it keeps the ends of the wires from poking you and gives your tassel a very finished look.
12. Instead of going through the process of making a necklace with the chain, simply clasp your tassel to the end of your chain and the link that gives you the desired length for your necklace. Use the wire cutters to cut the next link.
You can easily unclasp the tassel and add it to a different length chain, a piece of leather lacing, or even a larger ring for a little purse bling. There are all sorts of possibilities.
Wouldn’t these make fun teacher gifts, especially since the kids can do the tassel wrapping? I’m thinking of making a green one and black one to add to some necklaces I already have. And maybe a few shorter ones for a bracelet or two. What color or length is your favorite?
Maybe we should just have a party and make a bunch together. That would make it even more fun now wouldn’t it?