Supplies You’ll Need

  • Waxed cord
  • Scissors
  • Beads
  • Sea shells with holes in them (natural or drilled)

Supplies

First, lay out your beads in what you think you might like for a design. Of course, this can (and probably will) change according to how it looks with the shell, the arrangement, etc. I like to use naturally colored beads that go with the shells. Use whatever you think will look nice.

Construction

  1. Measure out and cut a length of about 30″ of cord, or less, depending on if you’re making an adjustable-length necklace or fixed-length. [[tell min length of fixed-length necklace]]
  2. Fold the cord in half.
  3. Insert the loop end of the cord through the front of the shell.
    Cord through the hole
  4. Insert the loose ends of the cord through the loop.
    Loose ends through loop
  5. Pull the loose ends through so the cord is snug against the shell.
  6. Put the first bead on both strands of the cord.
    First bead
  7. String the other beads on each side of the cord.
    Beads on each side
  8. Adjust bead order and quantity as required to make a nice-looking necklace.

Finishing

For a fixed-length necklace:

  1. Tie a slip knot at the end of the loose cords.
    Slip knot
  2. You may want to tie it loosely and try it out before tightening the knot – make sure it’s long enough to fit over your head!

For an adjustable-length necklace:

You’ll need a bead with a fairly large hole – big enough for 4 strands of cord to go through it.

  1. Insert the loose ends through the bead.
    Adjustment bead
  2. Loop the loose ends around and feed them through the bead again, in the same direction as the first time.
    Adjustment loop
  3. Tie a slip knot at the end of the loose cords. This may require several knots to make it big enough to avoid slipping through the adjustment bead. With waxed cord, it shouldn’t really be much of an issue, though.
    Adjustment end

Snip the excess cord beyond the knot, if you like. I usually leave just a little so if it slips down there’s something there.

Adjusting the length

Shorter necklace:

  1. Grab the strands near the top of the adjustment loop and pull the cord up through the bead so the necklace gets shorter.
  2. Pull the knotted end so the adjustment loop is snug against the bead.
  3. Tuck the extra cord into your shirt if you want to hide the excess.

Longer necklace:

  1. Grab the strands near the bottom of the adjustment loop and pull the cord so the knotted end gets shorter.
  2. Pull the shell end until the adjustment loop is snug against the bead.