Custom Necklaces with Lisa Jacobs

Lisa Jacobs, aka Sticker Club Girl, has always been attracted to functional art, so she says the transition from fashion design and crafting to her latest collection of custom jewelry was a no brainer.

"You can put a painting on your wall and admire it," she says. "But with jewelry, which is also an art, people get attached because it's part of your personal style."

Jacobs, who graduated from NAU with a degree in jewelry design and has been involved in many art collectives in Phoenix over the last seven years and sells her jewelry made from found objects, including old keys and watch parts, at Downtown's Indie Arthouse

We caught up with Jacobs, who gave us a couple of pointers on how to create our own custom pieces.


-Flathead and round-nosed pliers.
-Wire cutters.
-Different textured chains and chain clasps.
-Head pins, jump rings and 20 to 24 gauge wire).
-Found objects (old keys, watch parts, bolts, trinkets).
-Beads and buttons.

1. First, Jacobs picks her custom necklace decorations. She says the first step is usually the hardest, but everyone should pick their decorations according to their own taste. Jacobs uses a lot of different pieces, including glass beads, copper charms and, old keys, so that the piece will have a variety of textures. 

"I think of how these pieces add rhythm, movement, texture, and color when working on a piece," she says. 

2. Jacobs then chooses the chain on which the decorations will be attached. She says it's important to choose material that is agreeable with your skin and won't cause a reaction.

3. The next step Jacobs follows is wrapping the chain around her neck and deciding on an appropriate length. She then uses wire cutters to separate what is to be the necklace from the original chain piece.

4. After choosing the length of the necklace, Jacobs attaches the clasps at both ends of the chain by using flathead pliers to open up jump rings. She says it's important to open the jump rings by twisting them side to side as opposed to up and down (it distorts the shape of the metal otherwise).

Once the clasps are easily slipped into the open jump rings, she attaches them onto the ends of the chain by setting them with the flathead pliers. 

8. To add a different texture and color to the necklace, Jacobs then adds a brass-colored button to the bottom of one of the "texture" chains by using 20-gauge wire to wrap the button. This is done by looping the wire through the button and then the chain, followed by setting the wire with pliers. 

9. Next, Jacobs adds a little bird charm by opening a jumping ring and setting it on the chain like the rest of the pieces.

10. After setting the button and the charm, Jacobs uses glass beads to "create some balance in the piece." She loops 24 gauge wire through the bead and then bends it in the shape of a nose by wrapping it around round nose pliers. 

Once it is shaped like a noose, she wraps the loop around the chain and tightens it in. She then adds a couple more beads around the chain.

Jacobs says you can also add bolts or other trinkets available at hardware stores to give your jewelry a more industrial look. 

"Just have fun with it," she says.

To learn more about Jacobs, visit her website Sticker Club Girl

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