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Coiled and wrapped silver necklace

Create an elegant sterling silver chain

Read the project instructions for making the necklace below. For the free project PDF, which includes other design options, click here.

Materials 

Necklace 19 in. (48.3 cm) 

  • Sterling silver wire for chain
    •             15 ft. (4.6 m) 14-gauge (1.6 mm), half round
    •             4 1⁄2 in. (11.4 cm) 14-gauge (1.6 mm), twisted round
    •             10 1⁄2 in. (26.7 cm) 16-gauge (1.3 mm), round
  • Sterling silver wire for design options (optional; see p. 32)
    •             Small pieces of 16-gauge (1.3 mm), round           
    •             Small pieces of 18-gauge (1.0 mm), round
    •             2–3-in. (25.5–76 mm) pieces of 20-gauge (0.8 mm), round
  • 1 6–8 mm pearl (optional)
  • 2 pairs of chainnose pliers
  • 2 pairs of roundnose pliers (large and small)
  • Flush cutters strong enough to cut 14-gauge (1.6 mm) wire
  • Cross-locking tweezers
  • Flux
  • Micro torch
  • Water
  • Pickle and pickle pot, such as a Crock-Pot or container on a hot plate
  • Copper, wood, or plastic tongs
  • Steel bench block or anvil
  • Chasing hammer
  • Jump ring maker, or 4 mm mandrel with jeweler’s saw frame and 4/0 blade
  • Soldering surface (optional)
  • Hard silver solder (optional)
  • Sandpaper
  • 1⁄2-in. (13 mm) diameter wooden dowel
  • 4 mm diameter wooden dowel (optional)
  • Liver of sulfur
  • Haggerty’s Silver Polish and a soft cloth
  • #0000 steel wool (optional)
  • Tumbler with stainless steel shot
  • Shine Brite or dish soap
Coiled and wrapped silver necklace a
Step a
Coiled and wrapped silver necklace b
Step b

1. Flush-cut 25 7-in. (17.8 cm) pieces of 14-gauge half-round wire (a).

2. Ball up one end of a wire (b). Quench the wire in water. Flip the wire over so that the plain end is facing down, and ball up the second end of the wire. Place the wire in pickle until it’s clean. 

3. Repeat step 2 to ball up both ends of the remaining half-round wires. Set aside for step 11.

Coiled and wrapped silver necklace c
Step c
Coiled and wrapped silver necklace d
Step d

4. Flush-cut four 1 1⁄2-in. (38 mm) pieces of 16-gauge wire.

5. Use large roundnose pliers to make four figure-8 links with 5 mm loops (c).

6. Set a link on a steel bench block, and use the flat face of a chasing hammer to flatten and work-harden it (d). Repeat to work-harden the remaining three links.

Coiled and wrapped silver necklace e
Step e

7. Cut a 4 1⁄2-in. (11.4 cm) piece of 14-gauge twisted wire, and coil it around a 4 mm mandrel. Use a jeweler’s saw with a 4/0 blade to cut four 4 mm jump rings from the coil. Close the jump rings (Basics) so the ends meet flush with no gaps (e).

If desired, place a ring on a soldering surface, and coat it with flux. Place a small pallion of hard silver solder on the join, and heat the jump ring evenly with a torch until the solder flows. Quench, pickle, and rinse the jump ring. Repeat to solder all four jump rings.

Coiled and wrapped silver necklace f
Step f
Coiled and wrapped silver necklace g
Step g

8. Cut a 2-in. (51 mm) piece of 16-gauge wire. Hammer one end of the wire flat, sand the rough spots, and then use roundnose pliers to make a small loop (f). Use large roundnose pliers to make a large curve in the wire so that the loop is facing outward, as in (g)

9. Use the large roundnose pliers to make a medium loop on the other end of the wire in the opposite direction of the large loop (g).

Coiled and wrapped silver necklace h
Step h
Coiled and wrapped silver necklace i
Step i

10. Cut a 2 1⁄2-in. (64 mm) piece of 16-gauge wire, and ball up each end of the wire. Use roundnose pliers to form the wire into an abstract or pretzel-type shape with two loops — one larger loop for the hook to attach to, and one smaller loop to attach to the chain (h).

11. Center one 7-in. (17.8 cm) half-round wire on the 1⁄2-in. (13 mm) diameter wooden dowel, and wrap each end around the dowel to form a coil (i).

Coiled and wrapped silver necklace j
Step j
Coiled and wrapped silver necklace k
Step k

12. Remove the coil from the dowel, and wrap each balled end tightly around the coil to form a link (j).

13. Wrap a second 7-in. (17.8 cm) half-round wire around the dowel as in step 11. Slide the previous link onto the new link as if it were a key ring (k), and then wrap the balled ends around the new link as in step 12. 

14. Repeat step 13 to attach the remaining 23 7-in. (17.8 cm) wires to the chain.

Coiled and wrapped silver necklace l
Step l
Coiled and wrapped silver necklace m
Step m

15. On one end of the chain, use chainnose pliers to attach a figure-8 link, jump ring, figure-8 link, jump ring, and half of the clasp (l). Repeat on the opposite end of the chain. 

*TIP: After you attach the eye of the clasp, secure the small loop by wrapping the balled end around the base of the loop. 

16. Dip the necklace in liver of sulfur until it’s dark gray. Rinse and dry the necklace. Spray Haggerty’s Silver Polish onto a soft cloth, and rub the necklace to remove the patina as desired (m)

*TIP: You can also gently rub the necklace with #0000 steel wool to remove some of the patina.

17. Tumble-polish the necklace with stainless steel shot and Shine Brite or a drop of dish soap for at least one hour to polish the chain.

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