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Afghan-style necklace

String handmade pendants and beads to make a statement
Afghan style necklace

It’s easy to create an Afghan-style necklace once you get inspired by the details: hand-cut glass jewels, a cache of jingling dangles (favored by belly dancers), and “big-mouth heishis” made from melted coins. String the elements into your own personal statement.

See the project instructions below, or download the free project PDF above.

What you’ll need

Necklace 16 1⁄2 in. (41.9 cm)

  • 60–70 mm metal Afghan pendant
  • 2 45–50 mm metal Afghan pendants
  • 34–44 5 mm large-hole spacers
  • 14–20 8/0 or 10/0 seed beads
  • flexible beading wire, .014–.019
  • 10–14 in. (25–36 cm) chain, 7–9 mm links
  • 3 7–9 mm soldered jump rings
  • 2 5 mm jump rings
  • 2 crimp beads
  • lobster claw clasp
  • chainnose or crimping pliers
  • diagonal wire cutters
  • Super New Glue

Afghan pendants and spacers from Afghan Tribal Arts, Check your local bead store for supplies.


Afghan style necklace 1
Step 1
Afghan style necklace 2
Step 2

1. Remove the wire hook from three pendants. (Note: These pendants were sold in pairs.) If any of the glass stones are loose, secure them with glue.

2. Cut a 13–15-in. (33–38 cm) piece of beading wire. String one loop of the largest pendant, six to eight spacers, and the second loop of the pendant. Center the beads.

Afghan style necklace 3
Step 3
Afghan style necklace 4
Step 4

3. On each end of the wire, string: seven to 10 seed beads, seven to nine spacers, one loop of a 45–50 mm pendant, six to eight spacers, the second loop of the pendant.

4. On each end of the wire, string a spacer, a crimp bead, and a soldered jump ring. Go back through the crimp bead and tighten the wire. Crimp the crimp bead. Go through a spacer or two and trim the excess wire.


Seed bead smarts

Because the Afghan spacers were handmade, the width isn’t always consistent. Adding seed beads that rest inside the spacers helps keep them from overlapping too much when you’re wearing the necklace.

Afghan style necklace 5
Step 5
Afghan style necklace 6
Step 6

5. Cut two 5–7-in. (13–18 cm) pieces of chain. Open an end link as you would a jump ring and attach a soldered jump ring from step 4. Close the link. Attach the end link of the other chain to the other jump ring.

6. Check the fit and trim chain from each end if necessary. Use a 5 mm jump ring to attach a lobster claw clasp and an end link. On the other end, use a 5 mm jump ring to attach a soldered jump ring.


Want a simpler look? String an embellishment on 3–4 mm cable chain — it couldn’t be easier!

FIND MORE: necklaces , pendants

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