Making jewelry is a fun and inexpensive hobby. With a few great beads and pendants, you can make a funky retro-style necklace that everyone will notice and adore. Here's how:
Pick out your beads. The first step when making retro-style beaded necklaces is to find the beads and pendants you want to use. There are many places that you can look to find such pieces for your necklace. First look in your own collection for beads that perfectly fit the retro style. But also consider looking at consignment and thrift stores. You can often find great deals there on jewelry and beads that are perfect for this classic style of necklace. They'll probably be a bit aged anyway, which will perfectly suit your retro-style necklace. Wherever you shop, look for beads that are the right colors for the 60's or 70's (like gold, green, yellow, orange, red, and so on.) Big beads are also a great find! You'll probably have to buy the full necklace if you buy your beads at a thrift store, but that should give you some inspiration for making your retro-style beaded necklace.
Prepare your beads. Once you have purchased all of the beads you need for your retro-style necklace, prepare your beads. First remove any strings or attachments from the beads. (You should always use new closures and necklace string.) Then wash your beads in a bath of warm, soapy water. Dish soap will do the trick. If you find that your glass or porcelain beads are particularly dirty, an old toothbrush will help you to remove any grime. Dry off your beads completely before you start constructing your retro-style beaded necklace.
Lay out your tools. Before you actually start to create you retro-style beaded necklace, take some time to get organized. Lay out your tools, beads and other supplies. These included needle-nose pliers, round-nose pliers, a closure, and string material. (Fishing line works great as it is very sturdy and break-resistant.)
Then lay out your beads in exactly the order you want them to appear in your retro-style necklace. Avid jewelry makers have forms to help them keep beads in order before stringing them. But you can simply lay them on a clean towel to stop them from rolling away. When you're choosing your bead pattern for your retro-style necklace, it's okay to layer in some new beads with the old retro ones you picked up. Lay out all of your beads until you create the exact retro look you were going for with your necklace.
Start stringing! Now that you've laid out your beads and you're happy with the designs and patterns, start to string your retro-style necklace together. Attach a closure to one end of your string so that the beads do not fall off. Then continue stringing your beads onto the line in order. When you reach the end of your beads, attach the other closure with a tight knot. Cut off any excess string. Your retro-style necklace is now complete and ready for you to show off to the world.