When you walk along most beaches, you’ll find some shells have a hole in them where either the critter burrowed out, or maybe something burrowed in. I’m no shell expert, but after some research, I’ve found that most shells around here that have holes in them are called Atlantic Coquina, or “Angel Wing” shells, which I’ve heard them called sometimes. When I was out a few weeks ago, I found a beautiful striped shell with a hole that I believe is a Cockle shell. It’s this shell I’m going to use in my project.
|Cockle Shell I found with hole at the top|
For the necklace, I’m going to use waxed cotton cord. I like this stuff because it comes in lots of colors and is very durable, even surfing every day with it on.
|Waxed cotton cord in several colors|
For this, I used a sand color and an ocean color. Decide how long you want your necklace to be, and cut lengths more that you need, for extra to finish off. I doubled up one color to make a loop on one end and added a third color for a simple braid and joined them with a double overhand knot:
|Double overhand knot to start off, with a loop|
Next, I just braided the length of my necklace- I’m making a choker, so I just braided a little over 16 inches or so for me.
Next, I’m going to finish off the braid by tying a few overhand knots on top of each other to form a toggle end I can slip through the loop on the other end to close:
|End of braid|
Next, I used a jump ring to prepare to attach the shell to the braid:
|Open jump ring passing through the shell hole|
Next, I’ll take the jump ring- still open- and find the center of my braid length. I will pass the jump ring through two of the braid strands. This will keep the shell centered on the necklace, and prevent it from migrating around your neck. Close the jump ring with jewelry pliers, or small pliers.
|Jump ring going through two strands, not yet closed|
Trim off the excess ends of the braid and put a dot of E6000 glue on each end knot and let dry. Here’s the finished necklace:
Easy to make in any color combination if you can braid and do an overhand knot.
So, hunt for a holey shell, but pick up a beer can or two while you’re out there. If you’re wanting to make a necklace pendant from a beer can, though, I think you’ll need to jump over to Flava Flav’s “Funky Fresh” Craft Site for a how-to (did you know wall clocks make great necklaces???).