How to Make Standout Glass Cabochon Pendant Necklaces

We take the guess work out of making jewelry with your lampwork or art glass cabochons in this tutorial. Choose the best adhesive and findings to make high quality silver pendant necklaces with your glass focal pieces.

How to Make Glass Cabochon Pendant Necklaces

Make your art glass cabochon creations stand out as beautiful pendant necklaces! With just a simple bail and a finished chain necklace of your choice, you can add resale value to your cabochon as a wearable jewelry piece to show off. Learn how to make this easy upsell to promote your glass work.

Some customers love to buy loose beads and focal pieces to use in their own jewelry designs. But, you will appeal to a wider resale audience if you offer some ready-to-wear options featuring your art glass creations. This quick and easy technique will take your cabochons to the next level.

Making a pendant necklace with your art glass focal cabochon



You will need: sandpaper (240 and 400 grit), adhesive, a bail and a finished necklace.

Step 1: Consider the following before deciding on your jewelry making findings. First, the back of your glue bail (Item# S5059) must have sufficient direct contact with the cab and reach at least to the middle of the pendant for a secure connection. With some cabs, like the one shown at the left, the edge is rounded so you will lose that contact surface. Account for that when choosing the bail and go with a larger option. Secondly, you need to make sure the end of the finished necklace (Item# 21316F18) can fit through the inner dimensions of the bail that you choose.



Choosing the best adhesive for art glass jewelry making


Step 2: There are two types of adhesives that are perfect for attaching large cabochons to bails: Epoxy and (Item# X600) glue. Epoxy seems to be the industry standard, however, E6000 works just as well as long as you follow the directions. They set in 24-72 hours which allows you time to move and adjust your bail if needed. If you’d like an adhesive that sets quicker, refer to our chart below where we have several listed along with their set times.

You’ll need to prepare your pieces before gluing. Use 400 grit (Item# X991) to remove the oils and dirt from the surface of the bail. Then, sand the back of the bead to roughen the surface with 240 grit sandpaper so the glue adheres better. Use a toothpick to smooth the glue onto the back of the bail and the back of the cabochon.



How to attach a glue bail to an art glass cabochon




Step 3: Proper placement of the bail should look like the picture on the left. Make sure it is straight and fully in contact with the surface. It should reach at least halfway to the center of the art glass focal piece for a secure fit. Wipe as much wet glue off the back as you can before it drys, the remaining glue residue can be removed later once the adhesive is thoroughly dry.




Removing Glue from Art Glass Cabochon Pendants




Step 4: The excess E6000 glue was very easy to remove. I used a sharp pick and it chipped right off.





Halstead Glass Recommended Glue Chart

About the Glass Artist:

Published artist, Tammy Rae Wolter has worked in different mediums over the course of her career, finally deciding on glass after taking courses at the Bead & Button Show in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Her glass of choice is borosilicate, and she loves arriving at her studio each day in Waupaca, Wisconsin and opening her kiln to see her finished art. You can now find her teaching her own courses at Bead & Button Show.


Subscribe to our weekly articles mailing list to keep learning new jewelry making techniques. You may also be interested in these articles on how to turn art glass focal pieces into beautiful jewelry:

Turning Your Art Glass Beads into Jewelry

Simple Chain Necklace for Interchangeable Art Glass Beads

Using Ribbons or Cords for Jewelry Making

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Erica Stice
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