Beaded Chandelier Tutorial

Last week I showed you the beaded chandelier I made for our guest bedroom and promised a tutorial.  As I mentioned in my earlier post, I used the brilliant tutorial here as a starting point, and then added a few changes of my own.  Here's the skinny on how to make your own beaded chandelier:

Gather your materials: LOTS of beaded necklaces, cut into long strands (the Mardi Gras kind)
                                       Metal hanging garden basket
                                       A spool of thin-gauge wire
                                       Wire cutters
                                       Wire clothes hanger
                                       Pendant light kit (cord & socket)
                                       Metal chain to hang the fixture
                                       Light fixture mounting bracket, bolt & loop
                                       Light fixture ceiling cap
Start with a hanging garden basket.  Go ahead and paint it to blend with your beads (or the finished color of your chandelier if you plan to paint your beads).  I used a ladder to suspend the chandelier while I worked on it.

Top it off.  Because I wanted to wire this fixture, the metal hook on the basket wasn't going to cut it.  I needed to be able to add a pedant light cord and a chain somehow.  I ended up wiring a light fixture ceiling bracket to a ring made from a bent clothes hanger.  The loop on top screws onto a hollow bolt that screws into the bracket, which later allowed me to attach a chain.

Add a little structure.  I wired on a ring (again, made from a bent hanger) about half way between the top of the chandelier and the lower ring for a little more shape.  This allowed the beaded strands to swag a little without the metal chains showing.

Start beading!  After figuring out that my beaded strands were just a tad longer than I needed to go from the top to the bottom of the fixture with a little swag in the middle, I started attaching them around the top ring by looping wire around the top bead of each strand and the metal ring.

My chandelier looked a little crooked at this point, but straightened up once we attached the chain and hung it. 
Aaaaand bead some more.  This is definitely the most time-consuming part.  Just make sure that you have good coverage all the way around.  I attached all my strands at the top first, then at the middle (the top part of the basket -- so they would swag a little), then at the bottom.  In the photo above I had attached the beads at the top and middle and was trying to make sure there weren't any bare spots before attaching them at the bottom.  

Trim away the excess.  If your strands are a little longer than you need, just cut off the extra after attaching at the bottom of the fixture.

Add a chain and ceiling cap.  

Paint it up.  Give the whole thing a coat or two of paint if you want.  I decided to do this because I found that it made the wires and chains blend in better with the beads.  I used this to spray the fixture a custom color.

Hang it.

*Tip: You could add a second bulb for more light by adding a splitter like I used here, or if you're more concerned with aesthetics, you could use one of these awesome big bulbs  like I did.

Good luck!
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Bill, Misty, Will, and Laura Ann said... Best Blogger Tips

Love all the new posts. You are so talented. I really want to see a post about those babies you are waiting on. Do you have a separate blog for them?

Heather - Dollarstorecrafts.com said... Best Blogger Tips

Great job! I love all the additions you made to the original tutorial - really fabulous. Did I tell you in my last comment that I was thinking about buying turquoise bead strands from Fire Mountain Gems to make a fixture like the one you were inspired by?

Britt said... Best Blogger Tips

Misty, I don't have an adoption blog. There's really not that much to write since we just waiting right now. I'll definitely be posting about them as we get our referral and definitely once we bring them home.
Heather, I saw that. I'd love to see if you do go through with it. Thanks for letting me use your idea. It really is genius!

Heather - Dollarstorecrafts.com said... Best Blogger Tips

Posting about this tomorrow at Dollar Store Crafts, by the way!!

Kylee said... Best Blogger Tips


Rosie said... Best Blogger Tips

Incredible!....but where did you get all the beads?

Millie said... Best Blogger Tips

So pretty!

Tonia of Chic Modern Vintage said... Best Blogger Tips

I love this! I'm going to have to see if I can recreate this over the weekend. I think that I have most of the supplies here at home already. I found you via Bromeliad. I'm glad that I did.


Aunt Peaches said... Best Blogger Tips

WHOA!!! Geez-O-Pete is this cool! Love the scale and the color. Fabulous! I was thinking about making something similar for a while...stock piling beads for over a year, but was iffy on getting the skeleton set up --thanks for the tutorial, this will get me going!!

Single Stone Studios said... Best Blogger Tips

So genius! I love this! Great job.

andi said... Best Blogger Tips

Just came across this from Pink Wallpaper. Great job! Crazy - I've just been thinking how to make my own DIY version of that popular chandelier. I think i'll use wood beads.

Anonymous said... Best Blogger Tips

I would love for someone to make me one of these turquoise chandliers with real turquoise. Is anyone interested? If that is too expensive ,maybe wood beads would work. C.D.D

Sawdust and Paperscraps said... Best Blogger Tips

I just found you on Bloglovin'. This is amazing! I would love to use this post as a "guest post", I think my readers would LOVE it! Please let me know how you would feel about that.

Baker Family said... Best Blogger Tips

This is amazing! I found you on sawdust and paper scraps. I LOVE it! So SUPER creative!



style-for-style said... Best Blogger Tips

I did something similar here:

and here:

but I love your style!

Liz Owen said... Best Blogger Tips

Wow. Color me impressed. Seriously. I've seen a lot of projects in blog land but this might be my favorite so far!!! :)

Jenny Nicole said... Best Blogger Tips

Love this!

Neely Phelan said... Best Blogger Tips

Love this idea! What paint color did you use?

Jen-uinely Inspired said... Best Blogger Tips

Popping over from The Inspired Room. Gorgeous chandelier!

Bettsi said... Best Blogger Tips

Just linked over from The Inspired Room. LOVE this chandelier!

Cathy Wall said... Best Blogger Tips

Love this, so clever! ...just came from 6th Street Design

hal-delicious said... Best Blogger Tips

This is so great! Do you mind tell us how much you spent on this and where you got the beads?

Hyphen Interiors said... Best Blogger Tips

Pretty awesome!! Clever.

Britt said... Best Blogger Tips

It's been awhile, but I think I spent around $17 on beads, including shipping. The other materials I had on hand. I purchased the beads from here: http://emardigrasbeads.com/shoppingcart/displayProductOptions.asp

Carrie @ Hazardous Design said... Best Blogger Tips

Visiting from The Design Pages to say WOWZA! This chandelier rocks!

ReFresh ReStyle said... Best Blogger Tips

Love at first site! Great idea!

Amber said... Best Blogger Tips

Brilliant! It's so beautiful. How did you attach the beads? With the thin wire? Did you just cut the necklace to make a long strand and then spray paint them?

Steph @ Birdhouse said... Best Blogger Tips

Looks amazing!!!

{darlene} said... Best Blogger Tips

stunning and amazing! thank you for a GREAT tutorial. this is going in my design files.
- {darlene}

Janice Smith said... Best Blogger Tips

Could you PLEASE post or send me a pic of what it looks like if you are standing looking up at the light? I am a visual learner, and I can't imagine how you attached the beads to the bottom, without it looking messy. I LOVE this idea and want to try it. Thanks so much!

Janice Smith

Britt said... Best Blogger Tips

@Janice Smith
I'm so sorry, but we no longer have the chandelier. It was a temporary solution for that room, and has now been replaced, so I'm not able to take a photo.
I will say that when you have that many beads so close together at the bottom of the fixture, they hide the wire amazingly well. Hope that helps!

Britt said... Best Blogger Tips

Amber, yes, yes, and yes :) That is exactly what I did - it looks much more complicated than it was.

Mimi said... Best Blogger Tips

Fabulous!!! You're so smart and clever!!! Thanks for the tutorial --- I'm looking forward to seeing what else you dream up!

Montana said... Best Blogger Tips

I know this is an old post....but did you know that a similar chandelier is being sold for over $1000 here? http://www.laylagrayce.com/Products/Regina-Andrew-Lighting-Wood-Bead-Chandelier__RA405265.aspx

You're a genius.

Britt said... Best Blogger Tips

Haha, thanks! I love that fixture at Layla Grace, but like the price tag of mine better :)

Rachel said... Best Blogger Tips

I saw this on Apartment Therapy (did you know this is on there?) and the link back to your page didn't work. I was so bummed! I searched high and low (on pinterest) and finally found it! I'll be pinning back to your website as a DIY go -to! :)

Jamie said... Best Blogger Tips

Hello, I really love your chandelier! You have done such a wonderful job and I feel so inspired.. hope it's okay I just couldn't resist featuring this on my DIY chandeliers post on my new blog. You can see it here:


I really appreciate you sharing such awesome, photo illustrated tutorial.. I can't wait to try this one :0)

Brad G said... Best Blogger Tips

What a wonderful tutorial, I really liked it a lot. I'll be sure to try this in the weekend.
apartment for rent makati

Anonomous said... Best Blogger Tips

This is beyond brilliant! I'm definitly going to do this for my room. But where did you get they beads!?

Britt said... Best Blogger Tips

@Anonomous - Thanks! I can't remember where I bought the beads from... I did do an updated version of the chandelier with wooden beads (you can see it here: http://www.gusandlula.com/2012/06/chandelier.html)
and I purchased those beads from zsupplies.com. I hope this helps!

Cadence Vaughan said... Best Blogger Tips

This is amazing. I'd love to create one for our home. Very creative indeed! -Cadence

Bethany Morrison said... Best Blogger Tips

You have a very lovely home. I love visiting your blog as I get a lot of ideas and inspiration for our new home. The movers picked up the last batch of our stuff and we're about ready to settle in a few days. -Bethany Morrison

alison g. said... Best Blogger Tips

Hi Britt,
I just spied a link off Pinterest from 6th Street Design - a bead chandy tutorial. It links to this post, but the chandy is different. Did you make another version for your dining room? A version more similar to the Serena & Lilly fixture? If so, I'd love to know the sources for the more intricate hoop/frame.
Thank you!

Angela Gehring said... Best Blogger Tips

Brit do you remember how the amount of beads used? Doing this for a church event and need to stay on budget so not knowing how many I need makes it difficult to do that. THANKS!!

basma gaber said... Best Blogger Tips


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