Torsade Necklace,
Jewelry Making Instructions

What is a torsade necklace? A hint...Multi strand necklace. Learn to make this necklace design with step-by-step beaded necklace instructions!

Multi Strand Beaded Necklace

This type of necklace makes for unique pearl jewelry.

The word t o r s a d e is French. Now, that evokes romance and sophistication! (This alone is enough to make you want to run right out and buy the jewelry making supplies to make one.)

According to many references like Wikipedia and Webster's, torsade is French for 'twisting of the points'.

The strands intertwine and drape twisted about your neck.

Handcrafted Torsade necklace made of pearls

Statement Necklace

As multi strand necklaces go, torsades make great statement necklaces. The more strands you twist together, the bigger the look or statement.

And, there is a specific technique that's used to make a torsade necklace stay twisted. We'll discover that in Step 6.

Review these beading tips before stringing the necklace.

Before we make the necklace, we should go over a few beading tips.

They may seem unnecessary now (especially since your anxious to get started), but they will help you to make the torsade necklace more quickly.

Review them now and you'll bead a gorgeous pearl necklace creation. When I finished my torsade, I was stunned. It's beautiful! Just wait 'til you see yours!

Beading Tips to String a Torsade Necklace

1. String Different Length Strands
The necklace strands do not have to be the exact same length, but they should be within about a 1/2" (1.3 cm) in length of one another.

If not, the strands will not drape together when the torsade is worn. The difference in length allows the strands to loosely nest together, but not over crowd one another and bunch up.

2. String Pearl Strands Out of Sequence
When you string a torsade necklace, you do not sequentially sequence the strands on each end of the necklace with one another.

For example, one necklace end may be strung in a 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 sequence and the other end may be strung in a 2, 4, 1, 5, 3 sequence. Therefore, we'll need some way to distinguish the strands.

Choosing a different color for each or some of the pearl strands is a good idea.

Or, if you choose the same color for all of the strands, distinguish them in some way. One way to do that is to tape each strand with a small piece of painters tape and label each with a number.

Let's learn how to make a multi strand pearl torsade necklace!...

Bead Jewelry Project Category: Bead Stringing Tutorial

Skill Level: Beginning Beading Jewelry

Prerequisite Beading Techniques:

How to String Beads
How to Make a Double End Wrapped Wire Loop

Finished Length: 17 1/2" (44.5 cm)

Bead Jewelry Making Supplies

  • 2 16" (40.6) strands of 5-6mm potato pearls, dark color
  • 3 14 1/2" (36.8) strands of 5-6mm potato pearls, light color
  • 52 'E' beads (size 6/0 seed beads)(coordinate color with chosen beads)
  • 10 2mm crimp beads
  • 1 'S' hook
  • 12" (30.5 cm) length of 20 gauge half hard round wire (copper wire is used in this beading project)
  • beading wire (.014 diameter satin copper color wire is used in this beading project)
  • beading board (optional)

Bead Jewelry Making Tools and/or Pliers

  • crimping pliers
  • wire cutters
  • round nose pliers (optional)

If you need it, here's a review of jewelry pliers.

Beaded Necklace Instructions

1. Gather supplies, tools and beads.

Determine the finished length of your necklace and add 6" (15.2 cm).

Cut five pieces of beading wire to that length.

2. Make a bead stopper.

On one end of each length of beading wire, tie a loose knot to act as a bead stopper. This will keep the beads from accidentally falling off the beading wire while you string them.

Torsade Necklace

3. I wanted a tonal look for my torsade. I chose to distinguish my pearl strands by noting them as light (L) and dark (D).

String the five strands of pearls onto the beading wire.

String five 'E' beads onto both ends of each strand of pearls.
(This will ensure that the beading wire will fit back through a few beads. The hole in the pearls may not be large enough to accommodate two strands of beading wire.)

Note: After stringing the 'E' beads, two of my pearl strands are 15 1/2" (39.4 cm) long and three of my pearl strands are 16" (40.6 cm) long.

The finished length of my necklace is 17 1/2" (44.5 cm), including a 2" (5.1 cm) clasp. At this length, my necklace rests at the base of my neck.

Torsade Necklace

4. We now are going to begin making the double end wrapped wire loops to hold the 'S' clasp. If you need to, review and practice these step-by-step instructions first, How to Make a Double End Wrapped Wire Loop.

Using the wire cutters, cut the 12" (30.5 cm) length of 20 gauge half hard round wire in half, making two 6" (15.2 cm) lengths.

Using the round nose pliers, make the first half of a double end wrapped wire loop at a wide diameter on the pliers' jaw, closer to the handle of the pliers.

Torsade Necklace

Torsade Necklace

Beaded Necklace Instructions Continued...

5. On one end of one of the strands, string a crimp bead, thread the beading wire through the loop of the half wrapped wire loop, back through the crimp bead and a few of the 'E' beads. (I attached the strands to the wire loop in this sequence: light, dark, light, dark, light.)

Use your fingers to pull and tighten the wire, drawing the beads against the wire loop.

Using crimping pliers, crimp the crimp bead.
If you need a review, here's How to Crimp Crimp Beads.

Repeat for each strand of beads.

Torsade Necklace

How to Make a Torsade Necklace Stay Twisted

Steps 6 and 7 ensure that your necklace will keep its twisted look.

6. Ensure that there are no large gaps in the bead strands. The beads should rest snugly against the crimped ends. If necessary, adjust the loose knots to rest against the end of the bead strands.

Holding the half wrapped wire loop in your dominant hand and the loose ends in your non-dominant hand, twist the strands several times as one.

Torsade Necklace

7. On one end of one of the strands, string a crimp bead, thread the beading wire through the loop of the half wrapped wire loop, back through the crimp bead and a few of the 'E' beads. This time, attach the strands in a different sequence: light, dark, light, light, dark.

Use your fingers to pull and tighten the wire, drawing the beads against the wire loop.

Repeat for each strand of beads.

Before crimping the crimp beads, gage the fit around your neck. (Be careful not to poke yourself with the wire.)

If a huge length adjustment needs to be made, undo the strand ends, add more beads, retwist and reattach the strands to the half wire wrapped loop.

Using crimping pliers, crimp each crimp bead.

Using wire cutters, trim the excess beading wire.

Torsade Necklace

Torsade Necklace

8. Wrap the loop for each half wrapped wire loop. String an 'E' bead atop each wrapped loop.

Torsade Necklace

9. Complete the wrapped loop above the bead. Make the loop large by wrapping the wire around the larger diameter of the pliers' jaw.

Torsade Necklace

Torsade Necklace

10. Open both sides of the 'S' clasp as you would jump rings.

Torsade Necklace

11. Close one side of the 'S' clasp completely. Close the other side so that the wrapped loop snugly goes onto the hook.

Torsade Necklace

Congratulations! You did it. Making a torsade necklace is easy...Do you agree?

Torsade Necklace

The torsade strands will stay loosely twisted together. If you want more twists, twist the strands as done in Step 6. Then, clasp the necklace around your neck.

Now, rock your new creation...Wear it with confidence!

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Back to How to Make a Necklace

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