May 3, 2017

Tequila Sunrise Chain Bib Statement Necklace

So I figured while I'm posting about failures I might as well go all out. Yep, failure #2 right here. This necklace was modeled after my Egyptian-Inspired Chain Bib Necklace, but I wanted to go a bit bigger and bolder and feature a sunrise color palette (hence the name of this necklace). I also changed up the sides a bit by adding embellished connectors to better support the number of chains and to bring a little more color and bling.

Unfortunately, it was just too much, and I think this necklace paid the price for my overzealousness. There's nothing really wrong with this necklace I suppose, if you want a big and bold piece of jewelry; it just didn't turn out the way I had envisioned it in my mind. I do think the size ended up working against it here. For one, the focal element is too big, and thus less sturdy and more prone to warping.

Second, because the focal component is so long it required more and longer chains for the bib, thus requiring bigger connector elements. I embellished the connectors with colorful beads to try to fill in some of the empty space, but I just don't love them in this necklace because I think they distract from the focal and the chain bib itself.

I also didn't like that because the connectors have such variation in length where the chains connect, it was really difficult to determine the length of each successive row of chain and to get them all to lay somewhat orderly. I think this is fairly visible in the necklace if you're a detail person, and it really bothers my design brain to have them look so wonky.

On a positive note, one of the parts I really like about this necklace is the embellished chain I created to connect the side components to the toggle clasp. It just adds a pretty little extra finishing detail.

As for the process, I created all of the wire components in this necklace following my usual process for creating wire frames, adding some together to create one large frame, and embellishing them.

I also made all of the copper wire chain...and there was A LOT of it. The photo below is only a portion. I actually love making chain (I make each individual link by hand--no wire jig), but sometimes I wish there was a faster (and less abusive to my fingertips) way to get it done. Whew.

I made and embellished the toggle clasp following the same basic process as in my Queen Anne's Lace necklace.

All of the wire components were made with copper German style wire in gauges 20 - 26. This necklace also features a ton of beautiful stones in shades of yellow, orange, pink, and red, including chalcedony, raspberry quartz, lemon quartz, tourmaline, citrine, jade, quartzite, and agate, as well as clear crystals and white nebula glass beads throughout the bib and clasp.

At the end of the day it was a learning experience, albeit a time-intensive one. Because of the amount of time I spent creating the chains and finagling the layers I cannot bring myself to just scrap this piece, so it will likely hang out in my overabundant jewelry-that-has-no-future bin for now. Hopefully someday I'll find a market for all of my crazy outcasts! In the meantime, here are a few more photos and close-ups of this statement piece.

What do you think of this color palette? Do you like the embellished side connectors? How big is too bold for you? I'd love to know.

Possibly linking up with:

Fabulous Party at Lou Lou Girls
Show and Tell Link Party at Flamingo Toes
Your Whims Wednesday at My Girlish Whims
Link Party Palooza at Tatertots and Jello


  1. When I saw this on instagram, my jaws dropped as its super gorgeous. I can only imagine the amount of time and effort that you would have put in to create the chain. The closest I would come to this is by using readymade chains. This a red carpet or a bridal necklace where being bold is good.

    1. Wow, what a compliment! Thank you! I love making chain and the handmade detail it brings to my necklaces, but boy is it tedious sometimes, especially in this quantity. I could definitely see this piece as a wedding or quinceanera (a fancy coming-of-age celebration/party for girls in the latin/hispanic culture that is popular here in the US) necklace. And hey, I live only an hour and a half south of Los Angeles, so maybe one day it'll find itself on a red carpet!


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