Recycled Real Chandelier Crystal Earrings Tutorials |

There are many vendors who sell chandelier crystals. People want them to replace lost or broken crystals or make them into long suncatchers combined with other components. They aren’t cheap either!

When I encountered this old chandelier (c. 1950’s) which had seen better days, I knew I wanted to try making recycled chandelier jewelry. 

There were both long prisms as well as doubled holed round crystals which are shaped like rivolis. A good wash in warm soapy water brought the bedazzle back.

Beading is one technique which can be used to make beaded caps and bails for the long ones and beaded bezels for the rivoli-style ones. 

LONG CRYSTALS

The necklaces made from the long prisms will suit those who like their focals large and hanging from simple chains. 

This involves a basic wrap of a side drilled component.  First step is to cut a 20 inch length of 20 G wire. You can use either craft wire like Parawire in any color or solid metal like copper or sterling silver if you are practiced in wire work. 

Once when I was teaching this beginner technique class in-person pre-Covid, a teenage girl asked how she was supposed to cut the 20 inches when I had only given her a 12 inch ruler! Makes you wonder what they teach in schools these days.

I make it so the short wire end of 3-4 inches is the one which goes horizontal. The long end goes vertical.  I wrapped the short end upwards and the long end downwards until they met. Tip, you can use the flat inner sections of your round nose pliers to hold on to the loop. You’ve already got the round nose pliers in your hand so this saves you from having to swap to another pliers.

If you are the kind who gets paralyzed with trying to achieve perfection, this particular kind of wire wrap is not for you! It’s actually easiest to do an “informal” or messy wrap. 

The wire ends are trimmed and scrolled. Another tip : the tool hand stays stationary while the left (non-dominant) hand does the moving. I use nylon jawed pliers to avoid marring the wire. See the video on my TikTok. 

I had great difficulty photographing such big crystals!  Still a work in progress.

The necklace on the left was done with a TierraCast crystal and Parawire’s brushed silver wire for a duller finish. The latter was so it would coordinate better with the TC component and the stainless steel chain. The chain on the right is silver plated.

I attached a long chain (26 inches) to each pendant bail with two jump rings. There is no clasp and the pendant will always remain in the front.

Not liking so much wire work? Then consider end caps. TierraCast has a whole range of them in different styles, sizes and metal colors.  But the ones with no bails are the ones that will work. You’ll also  have to find the right fit for the chandelier crystal you are using. 

I chose the copper one on the left (above). The channel around the barrel is there if you want to glue on some bead work etc. I used Parawire’s antique copper so I did not have to do any oxidization. You can use uncoated natural copper and oxidize it yourself. 

I made the tiniest wrapping so that the crystal can fit inside the cap. 

But the crystal still felt loose with my first attempt. It needed some rubber washers but I did not have any on hand. So I redid the wiring and added two small pieces from a wide elastic band. Nice and snug!

Another tip is to use your crimping pliers to tuck in wire ends. No point making perfect wrapped loops if the wire end still sticks out a bit.

I’ve seen people use the round jaws of their round nose pliers to help them open and close rings because they only have one other pliers, the chain nose.  If two pliers are all you’ve got, use the inner flat edges of the round nose pliers to grasp the jump ring. It will be a firmer grip. 

ROUND CRYSTALS

The smaller crystals were easier because I didn’t do any wiring. I just connected them to findings and the crystals with jump rings. 

The pendant below can be customized with many things such as this TierraCast tree of life charm.  You can also add chain dangles, clusters of bead dangles, tassels etc. 

Similarly, you can ignore the second hole in the crystal for earrings and small pendants! This design uses small TierraCast Royal pinch bails. 

Would YOU wear real chandelier jewelry? Please post your comments below.

Photography

I used my iPhone 8+ for final product and some tutorial photographs in natural light.  I was also experimenting with a natural light 100W compact fluorescent bulb for some of the studio shots here. My online class Easy Guide to Smartphone Jewelry Photography is now available. Read more about it here.  

Before You Go:

Disclosure 

This blog may contain affiliate links. I do receive a small fee for any products purchased through affiliate links. This goes towards the support of this blog and to provide resource information to readers. The opinions expressed are solely my own. They would be the same whether or not I receive any compensation. 

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Collectible Jewelry