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Get Beadpunk'd beaded steampunk necklace

Incorporate a touch of steampunk into a necklace with eclectic appeal

If you’ve been intrigued by steampunk design, but think it can look a little rough around the edges, give this project a try. Designer Diane Hyde has combined her favorite beading techniques with the steampunk aesthetic, creating an elegantly eclectic look she calls "beadpunk"-- check our her article on the subject!  Bits of pink, orange, and green brighten up the usual steampunk color palette. 


necklace 27 in. (69 cm)

  • Lucite components
    • 42 x 16 mm leaf
    • 18 mm flower
    • 16 x 17 mm leaf
    • 14 mm flower
    • 9 mm flower
    • 2 7 mm flowers
  • 6–9 mm cabochon
  • 45–55 assorted 3–8 mm faux pearl, crystal, or glass accent beads and/or sew-ons
  • 7 mm half-ball crystal sew-on
  • 2 4 mm two-loop crystal connectors
  • 24 3 mm bicone crystals
  • 4 1.4 mm micro cube beads
  • 3 g 8/0 seed beads in each of 2 colors: A, B
  • 1 g 8/0 hex-cut beads
  • 3 g 11/0 seed beads
  • 1–2 g 15/0 seed beads in each of 3 colors: B, C, D
  • 2 1⁄2-in. (6.4 cm) diameter round watch plate
  • 1 1⁄2 x 7⁄8-in. (3.8 x 2.2 cm) partial watch plate
  • 5⁄8-in. (1.6 cm) watch face
  • 18–24 mm watch crystal
  • 5 9–12 mm watch gears
  • typewriter key with flat back
  • house key top (optional) (Gary Wilson Lapidary,
  • 3 or more metal stampings and charms, including a 19 mm flower and a 19 mm filigree stamping
  • 3⁄8-in. (1 cm) mesh dome (optional)
  • printed image or photo
  • clasp
  • 1 ft. (30 cm) 22-gauge wire
  • 12–15 in. (30–38 cm) chain in 1–3 styles
  • 16–20 5 mm soldered jump rings
  • 25–36 3 x 4–4 x 5 mm oval jump rings
  • 2 crimp beads
  • 2 crimp covers (optional)
  • nylon beading thread, size D
  • Fireline 6 lb. test
  • flexible beading wire, .014
  • beading needles, #10 and #12
  • cardstock
  • drill with 1⁄16-in. (2 mm) drill bit (optional)
  • E6000 adhesive
  • G-S Hypo Cement
  • Lacy’s Stiff Stuff beading foundation
  • permanent marker to match Ultrasuede
  • spray mount
  • spray sealant like Krylon Preserve It! (optional)
  • toothpick
  • PEELnSTICK double-sided adhesive (
  • Ultrasuede
  • chainnose pliers
  • crimping pliers
  • roundnose pliers
  • wire cutters

 Note: Materials listed are for Diane’s necklace. You may wish to substitute similar materials for your version.




1. On a work surface, experiment with designs by placing the components you want to use in a few pleasing arrangements that are balanced in color and visual weight. Sketch or take digital photos of the arrangements you like. You may need to refer back to them when you’re ready to assemble your piece.

2. Select the components that you are going to bead-embroider. In this necklace, the round watch plate and the typewriter key are surrounded by bead embroidery. Glue each component to Lacy’s Stiff Stuff beading foundation using E6000 adhesive. Leave at least 1⁄2 in. (1.3 cm) of foundation around each component. Allow the glue to dry completely.



Watch plate focal piece

1. Tie an overhand knot at the end of a comfortable length of thread, and sew up through the beading foundation right next to the watch plate. Working in beaded backstitch, pick up two color A 8/0 seed beads, align them next to the watch plate, and sew down through the foundation. Come up through the foundation between the A 8/0s, and sew through the second A 8/0 added. Continue around the watch plate in two-bead beaded backstitch until it is surrounded. End and add thread as needed.

2. Using 11/0 seed beads, work another round of beaded backstitch next to the round of 8/0s, but at the top of the watch plate, sew on an accent bead, pearl, or crystal. 

3. Sew up between the 8/0s and the watch plate. Using color B 15/0 seed beads, work a round of beaded backstitch between the 8/0s and the watch plate. Do not pull the thread tight — you want the 15/0s to rest on top of the crevice between the 8/0s and the watch plate (PHOTO A).

4. Determine where you want to attach a Lucite flower, and sew up through the foundation and the corresponding hole in the watch plate. Pick up a 19 mm metal flower stamping, an 18 mm Lucite flower, and a 4 mm pearl, and sew back through the flowers, the watch plate, and the foundation. Retrace the thread path at least twice for security.

5. Use E6000 to glue one or more 6–9 mm cabochons to the watch plate (PHOTO B). Allow to dry.

6. Using the remaining holes in the watch plate, attach beads, charms, and ephemera as desired. Sew beads and small Lucite flowers on as in step 4. If you want to add watch gears, fill holes in the watch plate with glue, and insert the gear stems (PHOTO C). 


7. Trim the foundation just outside the round of 11/0s, being careful not to cut the stitches. Tint the edges of the foundation with a permanent marker that closely matches your Ultrasuede.

8. Determine where you want this component to connect with others. Tie an overhand knot at the end of a comfortable length of thread, and sew through the foundation near a connection point. Sew a 5 mm soldered jump ring to the connection point, positioning it so half of it extends beyond the edge of the component. Repeat to attach additional jump rings at the other connection points (PHOTO D).

9. Trace the shape onto a piece of Ultrasuede. Cut the Ultrasuede along the line, and attach it to the foundation using whip stitch. End the thread (PHOTO E).



1. Tie an overhand knot at the end of a comfortable length of thread, and sew up through the foundation next to the typewriter key. Pick up an 8/0 hex-cut bead, and position it so the hole is perpendicular to the key. Sew down through the foundation, and sew back up a half-bead’s width away from the first 8/0. Continue to add 8/0 hex-cuts around the typewriter key, positioning them like the spokes of a wheel (PHOTO F).

2. Using color C 15/0 seed beads, work a round of two-bead beaded backstitch (PHOTO G).

3. Sew up through the foundation between the typewriter key and a hex-cut bead, and sew through the hex-cut. Pick up a 3 mm bicone crystal and a B 15/0, skip the B 15/0, and sew back through the 3 mm, the hex-cut, and the foundation. Repeat all around, adding a 3 mm and a 15/0 at the end of each hex-cut (PHOTO H). End the thread.

4. Finish the component as in steps 7–9 of “Watch plate focal piece.”

For complete project instructions, click here to download & print this PDF

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