Introduction: Whomping Willow Pendant
“ WATCH OUT FOR THAT TREE!” Harry bellowed, lunging for the steering wheel, but too late — CRUNCH. With an earsplitting bang of metal on wood, they hit the thick tree trunk and dropped to the ground with a heavy jolt. "
A first introduction to the whomping willow was given when the light blue flying Ford Anglia crashed into it. This pendant combines that memorable moment and wirework ; ).
I've been making a ton of tree of life pendants lately. By slightly altering my standard design - using thicker wire, a larger key ring and omitting the beads - I figured it would be pretty doable to create a whomping willow pendant! The tiny car adds just a bit of colour to it and really brings the pendant together if you ask me.
Step 1: Materials
- large key ring
- wire, I used 0,5 mm / gauge 24
- jump rings
- lobster clasp (or an other type of clasp if you prefer)
-approximately 50 cm of chain
The Ford Anglia:
- thick paper
- black fineliner
- light blue pencil
- wire, I used 0,2 mm / gauge 26
- box cutter
Step 2: Cutting Pieces
Take your wire and lay it out on top of the key ring. Be sure to let the wire extend a bit both sides of the key ring, about a few cm / an inch per side will do just fine. Once the first piece has been cut, use it to cut seven other pieces the same size, giving you a total of eight pieces. You could decide to make more, but try to stick to an even number of pieces. This will make the whole pendant process the easiest.
Step 3: The First Half
Split the eight wires into two groups of four. Put one of the groups away for now.
Take two wires and twist them together. Add a third wire by twisting it around the part you just created. Do the same thing to add wire number four. Split the wires out in two pairs on one of the sides.
Step 4: A Bit of Info
As you can see, the wrapped part of wire is just about the same length as the diameter of the key ring. Don't worry about this, it will actually make it quite a bit easier to realise the design this way. It will be unwrapped later and for now it's a lot easier to work with than just a small wrapped bit.
Step 5: Doubling
Repeat step 3 for the other four wires. Once you have two similar parts, wrap those together as well. Make sure to put the paired sides of both halves on the same side.
Step 6: The First Root
Place the wire wrapped part on top of the key ring. Position it where you want it to be (I placed it a bit out of centre) and make sure to hold it high enough to be able to wrap the roots. Choose a side to start with. If you're placing it out of centre, it's easiest to start with the side closest to the key ring. Wrap both wires around the ring and cut it off as shown. This way the wires end inside the key ring and can be clamped down against it, leaving no wire ends poking out.
Step 7: More Roots
Repeat last step for the other three roots. It doesn't really matter if you wrap the wire to the right or to the left, I usually go for the same side except if that gets tricky to wrap.
Step 8: Branches I
Carefully unwrap the top part of the wire wrapped stem. There's no need to straighten out the wires afterwards, the look created by being wrapped works perfectly for branches. Split the wires and position them the way you want them to be.
Step 9: Branches II
To end the branches, wrap the wire around the key ring, cut it off and clamp it down to the inside of the key ring. This is the same technique as used for the roots, but only with one wire. To make it a bit more tree-like, I wrapped two of the wires together and let them split up later.
Step 10: The Last Branches
For me, these two didn't look quite right, so I decided to loosely twist them together before wrapping the ends around the ring. Of course, this is all up to you.
Step 11: Necklace Materials
For the necklace, you can use a ton of different materials. The type I used is quite heavy and definitely wouldn't have worked for a smaller pendant. Depending on where you want the pendant to be when being worn, you'll need different lengths of chain. There are quite a few images online that show you exactly how much length you'll need for different types of necklaces. I ended up using 50 cm.
When it comes to clasps, the main point is asking yourself what you want to use, what you like. For bracelets, I almost always use toggle clasps, but for necklaces I prefer using lobster clasps. Of course, there's also the option that you've decided to put the pendant on a string that's closed with a knot, making the addition of a clasp unnecessary.
Step 12: Adding the Metalwork
When using chain, start by adding a jump ring to both of the ends. Add your clasp to one of the rings as well.
Step 13: Adding the Pendant
To add the pendant to the chain, start by folding the chain in half to find the middle of it. Put a jump ring through both the link of the chain and the pendant. I decided to add a second jump ring, just to secure the pendant a bit and make it look a bit better.
Step 14: Drawing
Take your paper and your pendant. Keeping your pendant next to the paper when drawing the car will make scaling it correctly a lot easier. Keep the drawing simple: two wheels, two windows, outline.
Getting the colour right can be a bit tricky, so be sure to swatch the colours before using them. Once you're happy with the colour, fill the car with it. The outlines and wheels can be completed using black fine liner.
Step 15: Cut It Out
Use your scissors to carefully cut out the car. The trickiest bit is the part under the car, this is also where a thin line of white paper still shows under the car in my version.
Step 16: Layers
Glue the cutout car on a piece of the same thick paper and cut it out again. After that, you can use an box cutter to carefully cut out the windows.
Step 17: The Back of the Car
At first I wanted to make the back of the car the same as the front. However, that didn't really go how I wanted it to. If you want to give it a shot, go ahead.
Otherwise, this is the perfect moment to take that black marker and simply use it to colour the entire back of the car.
Step 18: Varnishing
To give the car a shiny finish and prevent the colour from fading or smudging, add a bit of glue on a piece of paper with a straight edge and use this to evenly add a layer to the top of the paper. Make sure to give it enough time to dry properly.
Step 19: Adding the Car
After a bit of trial and error, I learned that my initial plan wasn't going to work. I wanted to add a jump ring through the back window and add the jump ring to the necklace. In the execution that turned out to be not that great of a plan. It was pretty much impossible to get the car positioned the way I wanted to. So, let's move on to what I actually did to add the car to the tree.
Cut off a piece of the 0,2 mm / gauge 26 wire and gently fold it in half. Position the car in a way so the part between the windows lines up with one of the branches. Put the folded wire through the windows and turn the pendant around. Bend the wires towards each other to secure the care a bit more in its position. End the wires by letting them go to the key ring and wrapping them around it.
Step 20: The Finished Pendant
And that's it! I really love how it turned out and hope you did as well : )
If you have tried this project yourself, be sure to share an "I made it" comment below!