Pendants and a cry for help with leather cording ;)

My DIL has pressured me into agreeing to participate in a craft fair at her church…not that I don’t want to do craft fairs, but it’s the whole scary doing it for the first time thing, compounded by my introvertness – eeek! I’m kinda secretly hoping they don’t have any spaces left, but if they do, I’m stuck. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Meanwhile, she wanted me to come up with a pendant design using the old Unitarian logo, as opposed to the new one I used on their usher badges. So this happened yesterday:

Now I’m trying to figure out what to hang them on…the craft fair is Saturday, so there’s not much time for gathering supplies, and I have to work between now and then, so I’m mostly stuck with what I already have or what I can find locally without having to walk too much (I can, now, but it’s still slow and limpy and painful!).

I have general supplies, like beads and clasps and things…the bails I have won’t work for these pendants, though, and jump rings seem too plain. I have some thin leather cord, which would loop through the holes easily, and I could add a semiprecious stone bead on top to dress it up a bit…

My issue is that I’ve never used leather cord for necklaces, and don’t really know what the right ways are for using it. I don’t think I have anything to crimp the leather with; are knots okay, if I find fancyish ones to use for attaching the clasps?

I’m hoping maybe some of my forum peeps will have brilliant suggestions to save me from my ineptitude. Help! Any ideas?


I like your pendant design. I do not work with leather but I think the thin leather cord with a nice stone as you suggested, with a barrel clasp would work.


No suggestions, but those look cool! :grinning:

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Very nice! You still need a bail or jump ring of some kind or the pendant will dangle sideways. Unless you put a loop of leather through the hole and pass the ends through the loop, then it will hang straight. The center pendant of my mosaic pendants is on 2mm leather cord. Either you need to make the necklace 24" long so the person can pass it over their head, or you need a clasp of some kind. Michaels has glue-in leather end caps with rings if you want to go that route. Then you could attach a lobster claw clasp or whatever. Or there is a way of making adjustable knots in your leather so the length of the necklace can be adjusted. I personally don’t care for this option since you can see the doubled cord if you are making the necklace shorter, but at least you don’t have to use any hardware. Here’s a YouTube link to show how to tie the knots:


Also, you might consider a pinch bail for the bail part–they are also at Michaels in various metal colors and would look nicer than a jump ring. Make sure you get the ones with the holes facing the right direction (there are two kinds).

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I’ve done some pendants with leather cords (years ago), and I opted to do a knot above the pendant vs. a jump ring or bale to get the pendant to lay flat (more or less) against the chest, and then I had magnetic barrel clasps that you crimp onto the leather. The one I’ve done for a small jade piece has held up for over 12 years with near daily wear.

Lots of good videos on line, or if you have a bead store near you, they are a great resource & can make sure you get what you need & even show you how (bigger craft stores may have some of same things, but the expertise may be harder to get the expert help there).

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That’s what I’m thinking. Thanks for the suggestions and video! I’ll post whatever I end up with. :slight_smile:

I think I’ve got some regular barrel clasps…if the holes are large enough I might be able to get the cord through to knot on the inside.

I used leather cord, glue on ends and lobster clasps for my items.


And doing a show can be scary–I consider myself an introvert, too–but as folks stop to admire your work & offer compliments (little ego boosts), or even better, when able to geek out with other vendors or (potential) customers about your GF, helps time fly and get over the nerves . At least my experience–have been doing shows about 10-12 years–I figure 1 in 10 slows down to look, 1 of 10 of those actually looks in detail/talks to you, and 1 of those 10 buys… some shows ratio is more in my favor for buying than others…

And there are always some who think everything should be cheap because it’s a craft show–price fairly, and make sure you’re not losing $ on the item (one way I figure my price is compare to retail, and knowing if I consign or wholesale I only get 1/2 of that, so my booth price is between that. But I tend to underprice & still take it personally when someone looks at one of my higher priced items, sees the tag, grimaces, and walks away–ignorning all the lower price point items I have… But then there are buyers who don’t even look at the tags before bringing to me to buy.

I tend to clutter up my booth (not unlike my replies, either, doh), but simplicity is always better, but have some height variation–just laying over the table is easy, but not way to catch shopper’s eyes. And I’ve just been using canvas drop cloths for my tables (as my leather work shows up better against it vs other colors) & the maple ply works great to make signs, and often easier to put a $ on the sign for group of items than price each separately. (Some I just added holes near at the bottom corners and use golf tees as the “legs”).


I don’t have any advice but wanted to share that I love the way you did the rings (cut+scoring for the shadow?) and the center engraved!



I’m pretty sure I probably would have had a good time once I got there. It’s that first step that’s hard! Regardless, it looks like I’m off the hook for this year – they didn’t have any booths left. Whew! I guess I’ll have to do the next one, though, now that I’ve got special pendants and everything!

Thanks for the display ideas – now I’ll actually have time to work some up. :slight_smile:

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Thanks! I tried a few with the chalice and flame cut out, too, but I didn’t like them as much. I might try again with the cutout objects slightly smaller.

Those look really nice. Now that I have more time, I might go hunt some down. :slight_smile:

Make them from 1 inch to 1.25 inch and can make earrings.

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Earrings are usually my thing, but she specifically requested pendants. I was thinking about doing some earrings anyway, though!

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if you cut and engrave these… (2.6 KB)
Kind of a rush job you may want to just make similar, by engraving two pieces with the post size a bit less than your hole size, done in thicker material and engraved the two parts glued together make a reasonable bail you can put a leather cord through,


Maybe your friend can put a few on her table & if you can hang out with her for a while, you’ll get a chance to see how a show works… They are lovely pendants, so I’m sure they’d get a lot of interest! (and hopefully new homes!)

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Wow, I wouldn’t have thought of making wooden ones!

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