This project began as many of my other projects begin: with a pin from pinterest.com (gotta love that site...). The pin was a picture of string crocheted onto a necklace chain with big links, and I really liked the idea. The problems were that A) I didn't have chain with large links (and neither was I about to shell out money to buy that) and B) the crochet pattern was pretty plain for my tastes. To circumvent this, I just created my own version, and here it is!
Step 1: Materials
- thin wire for crocheting (I used 24 gauge black-coated copper craft wire.)
- crocheting hooks (I used a thicker hook and a thiner hook -- size G and 9, respectively.)
- thread for crocheting
- beads, charms, etc. for adorning
Step 2: Crocheting With Wire
If you've never crocheted before, see this link for great step-by-step tutorials. This project only requires knowledges of four stitches: chain stitch, single stitch, double stitch, and slip stitch.
Crocheting with wire is hard; the wire isn't as flexible as thread, of course, so don't expect it to bend exactly as you want. Just be patient, and work slowly to avoid kinks in the wire.
Begin by looping the wire around your hook, making sure you leave about a 1.5" tail, (I used my thick hook to make larger loops) and twist the hook a few times to create a secure loop that the hook can fit in. Then do a chain stitch like you would with actual thread; this may be tricky so you might want to practice before actually beginning. Do as many chain stitches as you like for as long a festoon pendant as you want AS LONG AS IT'S AN ODD NUMBER. I ended at 11 stitches.
Step 3: Finishing the Wire Ends
To neatly finish the ends of your wire, cut the wire loose from your spool and insert that end into the last loop. Pull and use your fingers until that twist lies flat with the rest of the wire instead of creating a kink. Do that one more time (insert wire into last loop...) before wrapping the wire around a cylindrical object (I just used the handle of my crochet hook) and then wrapping the wire around the base of that loop to seal it off. Cut off excess wire flush with the loop and use pliers to flatten out the end as much as possible so that it won't poke you. Repeat this with the other end of the wire, and the wire portion is complete!
Step 4: Connecting Thread to Wire
Loop the end of your thread through the last loop in your wire crochet (not the loops that you wrapped at the VERY end; just the last CROCHETED loop) and pull the thread that's closer to the spool of string through that loop. Pull the tail to tighten and you now have a (kinda) slip knot for crocheting. Insert your hook (I now switched to the smaller hook size) to begin.
Step 5: First Row
Begin the first row by doing three chain stitches. Then do two double stitches, looping through the first crocheted loop on the wire chain. Do two chain stitches and then three double stitches, this time looping through the next crocheted wire loop on the left of the first. Again, do two chain stitches next and an additional three double stitches, looping though the next wire loop on the left. Repeat that until you've finished three double stitches on the last crocheted wire loop.
So in essence, the first row is just repeats of three double stitches, two chain stitches.
Step 6: Second Row
Flip your crocheted work thus far and begin row 2!
Begin with three chain stitches followed by two double stitches, looping through the two chain stitches from row 1. Do five chain stitches and then two more double stitches, looping through the next set of two chain stitches on the left of the first two double stitches. Rinse and repeat until you've completed two double stitches looped in the last set of two chain stitches from row 1. Then just do one double stitch, this time looping though the top of the left-most double stitch.
In a nutshell, the second row consists of repeats of two double stitches, five chain stitches (but three double stitches at the ends).
Step 7: Third Row
Ready to advance to row 3?
I think you are. ;)
Do three chain stitches and then five double stitches, looping through the first set of five chain stitches from row 2 below. Chain stitch three times and then do five double stitches, looping through the same set of five chain stitches from row 2. Chain stitch three times and then do a slip stitch at the top of one of the two double stitches on row 2 below. Do seven single stitches in the next set of five chain stitches on the left. Then chain stitch three times, and do five double stitches, looping through the next set of five chains stitches. Chain stitch another three times, followed by five more double stitches on the same set of five chain stitches. Repeat this whole process until you've finished the last set of five double stitches and chain stitched three times. Do the slip stitch at the top of the left-most double stitch.
Basically, the third row comprises of complicated repeats of three chain stitches, five double stitches, three chain stitches, five double stitches, one slip stitch, seven single stitches.
To seal the end, do one chain stitch and wiggle your hook until the loop attached to the hook is fairly big. Cut through the middle of the loop, and pull the string attached to the spool of thread until your pendant is detached from the spool.
Step 8: Hiding Thread Tails
To hid the tails, just insert your hook into a nearby hole in the side and pull the tail through. Insert you hook into another nearby hole and again, pull the tail through. Repeat until about 0.5" of tail is hidden before cutting the thread. Repeat for the other end.
Step 9: Embellishments
To add to this pendant, I used headpins and seed beads. I just put two seed beads onto a headpin, cut it short, leaving a 0.25" end, and curled the end into a loop. I also wire-wrapped a teardrop bead (see tutorial here) as a central dangle.
The windows in the lacy crochet were a perfect place to put the seed beads, and of course the teardrop dangled from the center point. Add any combination of charms and beads to your pendant though; be creative!
If you want, you could (and I would suggest..) use fabric stiffener or glue to make the crochet thread sturdier. Dip the thread (SANS EMBELLISHMENTS) into a mixture of equal parts glue and water and set aside to dry on wax paper. That method is the economy way, but it's not as perfect or elegant as the fabric stiffener way would be.
Step 10: Chain to Complete
To finish up, all you need is a length of chain and two jump rings to attach the chain ends to the loops at the ends of your festoon pendant.
Now you can flaunt your new pendant with pride!
Step 11: Variations
Of course, you can do different designs for different festoon styles. Here's another that I came up with:
Wire chain: 11 chain stiches again. Then attach the thread to the last loop like before.
Row 1: Do one chain stitch and then two single stitches in the same loop. Do three single stitches in each following loop (Admittedly, I think the design would look better if it were two double stitches per loop instead.).
Row 2: Do two chain stitches followed by a double stitch, looping through the middle single stitch on the second loop on the wire chain (counting from the right). Do two more chain stitches and a double stitch, looping though the same single stitch as before. Do two more chain stitches yet again and the same double stitch with the same position. Do (wait for it) two more chain stitches and then a slip stitch, inserting your hook into the left-most single stitch of the third loop of the wire chain (counting from the right). Do three chain stitches and then a TREBLE stitch (new stitch alert!), inserting your needle into the middle single stitch of the sixth wire loop (counting from the right). Repeat that pattern until you've completed three total treble stitches. Then do three more chains stitches and slip stitch, inserting your hook into the left-most single stitch of the eighth wire loop (counting from the right). Do two chain stitches followed by a double stitch, looping through the middle single stitch on the tenth loop on the wire chain (counting from the right). Repeat that pattern until you've completed three total double stitches. Do two more chain stitches and slip stitch, inserting your hook into the left-most stitch.
Row 3: Single stitch across the first small scallop: do three single stitches in between each double stitch of the scallop. Then do three chain stitches and four double stitches, looping through the first gap of the central scallop. In the second gap, do three double stitches followed by three chain stitches and three double stitches, all looping through the second gap. Do that three double, three chain, three double pattern in the third gap too. Double stitch four times in the fourth gap and then do three chain stitches before doing a slip stitch, inserting your hook at the beginning of the final, small scallop. For that scallop, just do three single stitches in between each double stitch like for the first scallop.
To end, it's the same process as before (see step 3).
By the way, I poked my hook between every single stitch in the first and third scallops, and I quite liked the lacier look. Try it if you wish.