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How To Finish Neck Collars

Learn how to finish collar necklaces in this tutorial covering the supplies and techniques you will need to know about to succeed.

It's all about neck collars! In this blog post we give you some great ideas on finishing collar necklaces plus we have a brand new tool to show you and we cover December's 2017 issue Lapidary Journal Jewelry Artist magazine.

Flashback from decades past? From the 70's craze of earring jackets to the oversized hoops from the '90s, the last couple of years have seen old favorite trends return in full force. In 2016, the choker trend began (again) with thick, tight, large chokers in the spotlight and the trend just keeps going with 2017 chokers scaled down to thin, narrow, looser collars. It looks like these trends are here to stay for a while. The collars below were all made using unfinished neck collars and were created to give you some great options on how to finish them. They range in difficulty from easy to hard.

Ball End Collar (skills: torch & finishing)


Sterling silver neck collars for jewelry

If you're new to the torch or are in a hurry, a quick way to finish rough wire ends is simply heating the ends. The heat of the torch causes the metal to roll up into a ball. For best results, point the wire down as you heat the metal.

Item used:

  • 1 = Sterling Silver 1.4mm 16 gauge Shaped Unfinished Neck Collar

Tip:

Keep your wire straight up and down and heat the wire from below with the flame aiming straight up. If you keep the heat on for too long, the rolled-up end will fall off.

Hook & Eye Collar (skills: filing, shaping, drilling, finishing & assembly)

Hook and eye clasp on neck collar

The great thing about this collar is that it requires no flame, for those of you without access to a torch. Round out the ends of the collar with a file, then use a Flex Shaft or drill press to pierce a hole on each side. Use jump rings to attach a hook and eye clasp.

Items used:

  • 2 = Sterling Silver 6mm OD 18 gauge Open Jump Rings
  • 1 = Sterling Silver 4.3mm 14ga Angle Wire Unfinished Neck Collar
  • 1 = Sterling Silver 9x29.6mm 15 gauge Heavy Brite Hook and Eye Set

Tip:

Be sure to use a hook and eye set that can handle the weight and tension of the collar.

Magnetic Collar (skills: soldering, finishing & assembly)

Collar with magnetic clasps

Solder jump rings onto the ends of an unfinished neck collar, then add the chain to each side. Use jump rings to connect a magnetic clasp between the chains.

Items used:

  • 1" = Sterling Silver 3mm Curb Chain Footage
  • 2 = Sterling Silver 4mm OD 19ga Open Jump Rings
  • 1 = Sterling Silver 9.9x4.5mm Super Magnet Jewelry Clasp
  • 1 = Sterling Silver 1.4mm 16 gauge Shaped Unfinished Neck Collar

Tip:

Be aware of which way you want your jump rings to face before soldering them onto the wire ends.

Heart Collar (skills: soldering, finishing & assembly)

collar with filigree heart finishing details

Cut and lightly file the ends of your unfinished neck collar, then solder filigree heart charms to each end. Add chain, a lobster claw and an accent bead or charm as the finishing touch.

Items used:

  • 2 = 10x12mm Filigree Hearts
  • 1 = Sterling Silver 5.4x11.7mm Lobster Claw Clasp
  • 6" = 2.9mm Sterling Silver Cable Chain Footage
  • 1 = Sterling Silver 8x12.3mm 3D Bali Style Bead Charm
  • 1 = Sterling Silver 4.3mm, 14ga Angle Wire Unfinished Neck Collar

Tip:

The filigree wire hearts are easy to melt, so sweat solder your collar ends then solder-on the hearts while keeping the flame underneath the piece.

As Seen in Lapidary Journal Jewelry Artist

Lapidary Journal Jewelry Artist: December 2017

Check out Lapidary Journal Jewelry Artist December 2017 issue for even more great ideas for finishing neck collars.

Halstead is one of North America's leading distributors of quality jewelry supplies. The firm is celebrating its 46th anniversary this year. Halstead specializes in wholesale findings, chain, and metals for jewelry artists.

Got questions? Email our studio coordinator Erica Stice at studio@halsteadbead.com. We’d love to hear from you. Sorry, studio support is not available by phone. Emails only, please.


Keep Reading:

Necklace Lengths Guide - How to Measure & Choose a Necklace Length

3 Types of Necklace Chain Extenders

Types of Jewelry Clasps & Closures

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