March 15, 2011

DIY: Peacock Feather Necklace with Chrissy Gemmill!

I am so excited to share today's DIY project with you to continue our celebration of National Craft & Crochet Month! Chrissy Gemmill is a local jewelry artist in Frederick that I have come to know over the years since I have been living in the downtown area. You may remember Chrissy from previous posts, as she was the teacher of the class we took for my bachelorette party last June and she attended my "Statement Scarf" class in February! Without further adieu...

Hi Donna’s Decembers Readers!

My name is Chrissy Gemmill and I am a jewelry designer, instructor, wife and mom. I write a blog where I chronicle the daily goings on in my studio and little world in beautiful Frederick, MD. I love what I do and my passion for jewelry making is life long. It is a true pleasure to have the opportunity to share what I do with fellow crafters!

I am excited to share with you my Transforming A Feather Into A Wearable Pendant In Just Four Easy Steps DIY project! This project requires NO jewelry making experience. Jeweler’s pliers are helpful but not necessary, this piece can be created with a few common household accoutrements!

I originally made this peacock feather necklace as a gift for a friend. The peacock is symbolic of kindness, patience, good fortune and immortality.

When I began designing with this fanciful feather I found such beauty in the feather alone that I didn’t want to take away from it with over embellishments of the chain or findings. The end result was so simplistic and steps to create it so simple that I thought one day I should share this simple DIY project! Thanks to Liz for finally prompting me to follow through!

Transform A Feather Into A Wearable Pendant In Four Easy Steps!
By Chrissy Gemmill

Materials List

(available at Joann Fabrics and most other craft stores)

• Feathers (selecting feathers with fabric at the top is helpful).
• 26 gauge wire (I used silver tone but colored wire would work nicely)
• Wire Necklace Or Cording

Tools(available at Joann Fabric and most other craft stores):

Pliers (optional); 1 wire cutter, 1 flat nose, 1 round nose, 1 chain nose (tapered)

How to improvise without buying tools:
• Household scissors; will easily cut 26 gauge wire
• Your fingers; great for bending and twisting wire into place
• Round chopsticks or a pen; to shape and bend a loop
• Tweezers; to push in wire ends

Steps to create a coil and loop for your feather:

Step 1: Make a coil.

• Cut about 6 or so inches of wire

• Place your wire at the fabric base of the top of the feather

• Begin your coil by placing about two or so inches of wire on the front side of the feather and then wrap the long end of the wire around to the opposite side

• Continue your coil by using your fingers and wrapping the wire around while working your way up the top of the feather. Remember to pull the coil tightly so that it does not slide off the top of the feather. Coil as many times as you find aesthetically fitting.

Step 2: Making a loop

• To create your loop stop your coil making at the back of the feather and grab your round nose pliers (or chop stick/pen) then bend the wire over the round part of your tool and take the long part of the wire over the front of the feather.

• To secure the loop in place take the long part of the wire and tuck it under the tail then bend both wires in the opposite direction to the back of the feather.

Step 3: Secure and finish the loop

• Take the longer tail and wrap it up and over the start of the loop

• Carefully with your chain nose pliers (or tweezers) wrap the two tails around each other to secure them in place

• With your wire cutters (or scissors) snip off the excess wire and then bend or wrap any little extra wire tail under the coils.

• Using your fingers or flat and/or chain nose pliers gently adjust any wires into shape.

Step 4: Add to wire necklace or cord

• If you are using cord, cut it so that it can simply be tied around the back of the neck. If you have chosen a wire necklace simply slide your pendant on and it is ready to wear!

Thank you Chrissy! What a beautiful statement piece for spring and summer!
For more information about Chrissy or Chrissy Gemmill Jewelry:

Check out our other National Craft & Crochet Month posts!

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