In today's world of instant information at a click, it's sometimes fun, and beneficial, to look at the history behind our interests. In this instance, I thought we could find out a little more about necklaces and the elements that we use in jewelry making projects.
Evidence of simple necklaces made of shells, teeth, bone and even rocks, strung together has been found in burial locations dated as far back as the Neolithic period. As people ventured further away from their birth places to interact with other cultures, we see adornments start to include coral, polished stones, that would become gemstones as technology progressed, and eventually, beads made of precious metals.
For early humans, necklaces probably started out as decorative to enhance the everyday mundane 'fashions' of the time, or maybe to attract the opposite sex. As the human race grew to include different class levels, jewelry became more intricately designed and we see structured beadwork, metals such as gold, platinum and silver, pearls and precious gems. Jewelry became an integral element of dress, and often designated where the wearer was in the wealth and social status pecking order.
Fashion became more casual in the early twentieth century and new materials, new technologies and mass production was introduced to society. Today, almost everyone wears some form of jewelry and the kind of jewelry we wear is based on personal tastes, affordability and popular trends.
What is your taste? What is your favorite to wear or to make? Let's preview some of the different styles of necklaces that can be seen today. Click on each of the images below to find instructions and a product list to make each design.
The Citrine Sun Necklace is simplicity at its finest. Using 5mm Round Leather Cord and a pretty Round Mesh Designer Pendant, this beginner-level necklace will make you feel like a pro when you wear it.
Our Flamingo Trail Silk Ribbon Necklace combines Hand Dyed Silk Ribbon, Waxed Jewelry Cord, and Bulahan Wood Beads. Change the colors of the elements to fit your tastes and make a pretty 20-inch necklace that will be perfect with all your summer outfits.
Rural Pearls Bone Bead Necklace is an intermediate level of difficulty, but the end result will be worth your time. Layers of mixed sizes and shapes of Carabao Bone Beads and Graywood Round Beads give this necklace an air of elegance.
We can't forget about the men in our lives. Our Palmwood Necklace is finished at 22 inches, simple and masculine for the guy who likes jewelry, but doesn't want to be over-the-top. 2mm Round Leather Cord, a few understated accent beads and a Palmwood Bone Bead as a focal, this will make a gift any man in your life will love to wear.