Winter Outside, Spring Inside: Bird’s Nest Necklaces

A friend of mine was wearing a wee bird’s nest around her neck when I saw her last week.  I squee-ed and then I went home and started looking up tutorials for these.  Seems I really missed the boat.  These have been gracing the interwebs for ages.  So, I’m late on the bandwagon, but *needed* one.  And, as it turns out, it’s an easy craft for kids too!  Abby immediately started making hers when she saw me start mine.  Honestly, I think I like hers better!

I looked at a lot of images of nests out there (see here and here) and then looked at a few tutorials (see here and here).  In the end, Abby and I just winged (ha!) it with what we had on hand.  The wire is 20-ish gauge sterling I had in my jewelry supplies from 10 years ago.  My beads (the cream ones) had fallen off a bracelet and Abby’s (the turquoise) are from a Melissa and Doug jewelry set she got a year ago (somewhat like this one).  It is easier to secure the wire by using some needle nose pliers, but any pliers would work in a pinch.

In the simplest terms:

What you need:

  • 3-4 feet of 20-ish gauge wire (or lots more feet of a smaller wire. . . you can experiment on this)
  • 3 beads that you like and look egg-ish
  • pliers
  • wire cutters
  • a string to make the necklace out of

What to watch out for:

  • Long ends of the wire can be unwieldy and sharp.  So keep a good eye on the kiddo (and yourself, Abby kept inadvertently poking me with her wire as she wrapped!)
  • When cutting off wire ends, they can fly pretty far.  Maybe do that part away from the littles and um, look away when you clip.  I had a piece of the wire fly right at my eye.  Eeeks!

What you do:

  • String 3 beads onto some wire. (the larger the gauge, the skinnier the wire and the more yardage you’ll need.  Experiment here.)
  • Wrap the wire around the outside of the 3 beads a bunch of times.
  • Stop and secure the bundle of wires by putting your wire down between the 3 beads and wrap around the “wreath” a few times.

Abby (6) wrapping the wire around the “eggs” to craft a nest.

  • Wrap around the outside of the beads some more, then secure again.
  • Repeat until you like how it looks.
  • Secure your ends by twisting them into a circle you can string your necklace through. (Here’s a much more extensive and fancy way to make a bail with wire.  You’ll get the gist if you check this out.)
  • Trim off any sharp ends with wire cutters.
  • String onto a necklace.
  • Wear with pride.

Abby’s looks amazing because she wasn’t as *precise* as I was trying to be.  Her imprecision and carefree wrapping makes hers look a bit more natural.  I LOVE it.

She was able to do 85% of this project by herself.  I had to hold onto the nest while she secured her wraps and I made the bail for her.

We’ve been wearing our nests around and looking for signs of spring outside.  (Um, the snow around here is making THAT task hard!).

A fun, simple crafty project to while away these snowbound days.

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About Carrie @ Rhubarb Sky

I am a mama, wife, writer, educator, artist, knitter, activist, cook, loudmouth (not necessarily in that order). I enjoy making things with my own two hands, backpackin, running, red wine, good food, reading, writing, playing, and being with good friends. I blog a little. . . I love a lot.
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7 Responses to Winter Outside, Spring Inside: Bird’s Nest Necklaces

  1. shannon says:

    SO cute! Great job, you two!
    You reminded me of a ring version my friend Becky will be wearing at her wedding…maybe you can tackle a ring next :)

    (Scroll down to see her ring…)
    http://www.talesofmikkimoto.com/2010/08/15/my-something-blue/

  2. Lisa says:

    Oh this is so cute. And it looks really simple to make, might have to have a go myself.

  3. KJ says:

    where have I been? this is the first i’ve heard of this! so cute!

  4. dallas says:

    I love this idea. My mom wants me to make her one. Thanks for the idea.

  5. Renee says:

    Thanks Carrie, I Loved making it. I am going to wear it Easter :)

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