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Garden party set

Lucite flowers and butterflies grace a necklace, bracelet, and earring trio

Pretty in pink, peach, and plum, the intense colors of Lucite look best when strung simply, yet a simple piece can still be bold in its arrangement. Look for vintage beads at thrift stores or flea markets and mix them with contemporary beads. For the necklace, I chose clear and opaque beads to surround an asymmetrical cluster of flowers. The bracelet contains different sizes of teardrops, reminiscent of the buttons on an old cardigan. To complete the ensemble, I dangled delicate butterflies and crystals in earrings with varying lengths of chain.

Necklace

  • 3 18 x 25mm Lucite flowers 
  • 3 17mm carved round Lucite beads
  • 3 16mm round Lucite beads
  • 5 13 x 16mm Lucite ovals
  • 10 9 x 12mm Lucite rondelles
  • 27 or more 3mm bicone crystals, light amethyst
  • 4 3mm round spacer beads
  • flexible beading wire, .014 or .015
  • 2 crimp beads
  • lobster claw clasp
  • 10mm soldered jump ring
  • chainnose or crimping pliers
  • diagonal wire cutters

Bracelet

  • 15-20 12mm side-drilled Lucite drops
  • 15-20 7mm side-drilled Lucite drops
  • Gossamer Floss elastic
  • twisted wire beading needle, medium
  • G-S Hypo Cement
  • scissors

Earrings

  • 2 9 x 11mm Lucite butterfly beads
  • 6 4mm bicone crystals, 2 each of 3 colors
  • 2 3mm bicone crystals
  • 16 in. (41cm) fine-gauge cable chain
  • 5 in. 24-gauge wire or 2 2 1⁄2-in. (6cm) head pins
  • 6 1 1⁄2-in. (4cm) head pins
  • pair of earring wires
  • roundnose and chainnose pliers
  • diagonal wire cutters

INSTRUCTIONS

Garden party necklace a
Necklace: Step 1
Determine the finished length of your necklace (mine is 15 in./ 38cm), add 6 in. (15cm), and cut a piece of beading wire to that length. String two crystals and a flower. Repeat twice, then string two crystals.
Garden party necklace b
Step 2
On each side of the flowers, string an oval, crystal, rondelle, crystal, carved round, crystal, rondelle, crystal, round, crystal, rondelle, and crystal.

On one end, repeat the pattern, then string an oval and a crystal. On the other end, string an oval, crystal, rondelle, and crystal. Check the fit, adding or removing beads as necessary. The flowers will lie slightly off-center.
Garden party necklace c
Step 3
String a 3mm spacer, crimp bead, spacer, and the clasp. Go back through the last beads strung, tighten the wire, and crimp the crimp bead. Repeat on the other end, using a soldered jump ring in place of the clasp.
Garden party bracelet a
Bracelet: Step 1
Measure your wrist and add 3 in. (8cm). Double the measurement and cut a piece of elastic to that length. Center a needle on the elastic and tape the ends together. String assorted Lucite drops on the elastic until the bracelet comfortably encircles your wrist.
Garden party bracelet b
Step 2
String assorted Lucite drops on the elastic until the bracelet comfortably encircles your wrist.
Garden party bracelet c
Step 3
Remove the tape and tie a surgeon’s knot with the ends of the floss. Glue the knot and trim the ends to 1⁄8 in. (3mm). Gently stretch the bracelet to pull the knot into an adjacent bead.
Garden party earrings a
Earrings: Step 1
Cut 2-, 2 1⁄4-, and 2 3⁄4-in. (5, 6, and 7cm) lengths of chain.
Garden party earrings b
Step 2
String two head pins with 4mm crystals and one with a butterfly bead and a crystal, as shown. Make the first half of a wrapped loop above each bead.
Garden party earrings c
Step 3
Slide each bead unit into the end link of the shorter chain segments. Attach the butterfly unit to the longest piece. Complete the wraps.
Garden party earrings d
Step 4
Cut a 2 1⁄2-in. length of 24-gauge wire. (Or use a head pin and snip off the head.) String a 3mm crystal and make the first half of a wrapped loop on each end.
Garden party earrings e
Step 5
On the bottom loop, string the three  chain components from step 3. (I strung them from shortest to longest, but you can also put the longest component in the middle.) Complete the wraps on both loops.
Garden party earrings f
Step 6
Attach the remaining loop to an earring wire.

Make a second earring the mirror image of the first.
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