This beaded hair clip is easy to make and looks unique and pretty. My son and I were really sick recently and I spent a few days on the couch watching Downton Abbey and I am pretty sure the styles in the show are what inspired me to make this hair piece. It is vintage-inspired and not something you'll see people wearing everyday. I haven't made many things out of beads before - but I really like how this turned out and it's a pretty simple project.
Step 1: Materials for Vintage Beaded Hair Clip
- Wire - I used 26 Gauge (if you have thicker wire it will work as long as it's still pretty pliable)
- Beads - I used size 6 beads as well as smaller size 11 glass beads & also some pretty pink crystal beads which were larger
- Pliers for Beading - 4 In 1 Pliers Round Nose, Cut Wire, Flatten, Close Jump Rings (a 4-in-1 tool is cheap and useful)
- Hair Clip - I used VS Sassoon Sure Grip Clix
Step 2: Techniques & Getting Started
First, take out the wire and cut out a piece about 25 inches long. This doesn't need to be exact - as you'll be able to add onto it whenever necessary. Hopefully the instructions here will help you get started and give you some ideas and inspiration for your beading project. There isn't an exact science to it - and each piece will be unique to the one who creates it. But I will still try to guide you through with the photos and tips here.
Once you cut out the piece, then try to locate the center of it and pinch the piece together on the side opposite the open end. Then take your pliers while holding the wire with the other hand and twist so the first inch to two inches is twisted together. You'll then have the twisted part and two long pieces of wire coming off the other end. Take one of those long pieces of wire and bend it in a way so that there is about an inch and a half of wire (please see 2nd image). Then use the pliers to pinch the bottom part of it and twist a piece of wire around it to hold it so it's secure there. Then use the pliers to pinch the top of that new long loop you formed and twist that close and so it's tight.
Once the wire is twisted and pinched together you can then add your beads. I was able to fit about 3 beads. Then bring the tail of that wire back to the main piece and wrap it around tightly and pinch it with the pliers to secure it. Then twist the two long wires together about 1/2 inch in length and then you'll want to repeat the process to form another loop of beads on the other side. For this side I used a little less wire and only attached two beads. Then I repeated the process till I had about 4 inches of beading done.
Tip: Don't over-twist the wire or it may break off. If it does break, you can always go back in and fix it with some wire.
Step 3: Making It Bigger
Once you get to the end of that row, you'll then want to start building onto it. I believe I needed to cut another long piece of wire. I then attached the top of the piece to the bottom - leaving slack so I could add beads to the wire area and the area in between. This is where you need to just wing it and be creative. I would add loops of beads in between to fill in the gaps and then some areas I would just add a piece of wire across and go back later to fill it in as needed with beads. Just be sure to twist the wire around and clamp it down where needed with the needle-nose pliers. I used the round nose pliers also when twisting the wire around other pieces of wire.
I was almost done but decided to go back in and further fill in the gaps with more beads and wire. There are areas where I only used a single wire but most areas I had a double-thickness of the wire as I had bended the wire and used two pieces together. It's more secure with the thicker wire or doubling up with it. Keep adding onto the piece until you are happy with the size and shape. But once you get the hang of it and know how to add the beads, you should have no problems.
Step 4: Attaching the Hair Clip
I've uploaded some close-ups so you can really see what I've done with the beading and wire twisting. Once you're happy with what you've made, you will then want to add the hair clip. I don't know how all hair clips work, but the one I happened to have at home is larger than some and has a hole and the tip end of it which was perfect for attaching wire to and securing it in place.
So I took out my clip and figured out where I wanted it placed and first cut out some wire to attach the end (closed side of it). I basically pulled the wire through that area firmly and attached it to the beaded piece without making the piece look bad or making it too noticeable. Then pointy end of the hair clip had a hole in it so I used that to pull wire tightly through and attach it to the piece near that end. That's all and you're done!!!