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Posts Tagged ‘beads’

anthro inspired necklace

Theres a myriad of websites and blogs that I check up on periodically for inspiration.  A while ago I saw this necklace

for around $35 from Anthropologie and thought to myself as I often do, “I can make that”.  Then last weekend I had a holiday craft party with some fabulous ladies and finally got around to making my version of the necklace.  The thing I love about this necklace is that it takes little jewelry making knowledge and is super quick to make.

Heres the breakdown:

Cost: This can really vary depending on what kinds of beads you’re using.  For this tutorial I used wooden beads that I got off of a gift bag handle.  Check the Dollar Store for beads in the craft section or for jewelry you can disassemble.  You can also keep your eye open for 50% off sales at your local craft store or check May’s Beads online (they’re shop is in Houston and I LOVE it) for incredible prices on gemstones and crystals.  For the chiffon (or other light weight fabric) check the remnant bins at fabric stores.  They are usually discounted up to 80% per yard.   Or chop up an old skirt or shirt you don’t wear anymore.  All-in-all I think my project cost me about $3 since all I had to buy were the clasps and jump rings to finish off the ends.

Supplies:

  • Chiffon or other light weight fabric.  You’ll need 2 3/4″x15″ strips.
  • Beads.  Round or oval beads work great.  The larger the beads, the less clusters you’ll have on your necklace.  These beads can all be the same, or can be three coordinating different beads per cluster.
  • Sharp scizzors.
  • 2 crimp ends.
  • 2 jump rings.
  • 1 toggle clasp.
  • 2 wire beading needles.
  • Flat nose pliers.

Lets make something pretty.

1. The first thing to do is cut your chiffon strips.  You need 2 strips about 3/4″ wide by 15″ long (or longer/shorter to your taste).

2. Thread your chiffon strips through your beading needles.

3.  Thread 2 beads onto your first strip and slide them toward the end leaving about 5-6″ of chiffon.

4.  Thread one bead onto the second chiffon strip and slide it toward the bottom to about the same place.

5. Knot the two strips together at both ends of the bead cluster.

6. Repeat steps 3 through 5 until you have about 5-6″ of chiffon remaining at the threaded end of the necklace.  For me this gave me 5 clusters but it will depend on how large your beads are and how tightly you group them.

7.  To finish the necklace and add the clasps simple attach your crimp bead ends to the chiffon by twisting the ends of the fabric and holding them in the middle of the crimp bead with one hand while you squish the sides of the crimp bead with the pliers in the other.

8.  Attach your jump rings and your toggle clasp ends and twist your jump rings shut.  *Tip* TWIST the jump rings, don’t squeeze them shut or they won’t come together properly.

9. Trim any excess chiffon and scraggly chiffon hairs if you’d like.  *Tip* Use Fray Check  on the edges of your strips if you don’t want your chiffon to fray.  I personally like the frayed look.  And there you go!  BEAUTISSIMO!

These were so easy to make that I ended up getting out my stash of scrap fabric and beads and made tons more.  You’ll want to do the same since I’m certain that as soon as your friends and family see you with it on that they’ll want one too! Enjoy!

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I made two at the same time to show you different options for the same necklace.Aren’t they PURTY!!!  And oh-sew-easy to make! 😉  (I know…that was cheesy.)

Well I hope you had fun making my last two spring projects and that you’re now in the mood to dress yourself in the latest spring accessories and colors!  Bib necklaces are insanely popular right now which is fabulous for us DIY’ers since they’re so easy to make with so many different ways to make them.  My favorite part about this trend is that the “handmade looking” bib necklace is what is most desired right now and that the more custom and handmade yours look, the more chic and fabulous they are!  You can make yourself a bib necklace with just about any craft items you have around the house; scrap fabric, old t-shirts, lace, buttons, old jewelry, felt, leather, ribbon, etc…just about ANYTHING can be fashioned into a statement bib necklace.  For this tutorial I really wanted to create something fun and bright and elegant to bring some sunshine and flowers into my wardrobe.  I made two necklaces at the same time using basically the same technique  for each with just a few differences to show you some variations of the same necklace.  FYI:  A lot of these tutorials document my FIRST ATTEMPT on the projects I want to do so they are very much open to your own inspiration and tweaking.  I have an entire photo file on my computer that I add pics to that I like and think that I could make or create a similar version/idea of.  So I’m learning as I go, just like you! 🙂  Ok then, are you ready!?

Cost: $0-$5 (Like I said, this project can be done with just about anything that you have around the house already which makes it a great recycling/upcycling DIY project for old clothing, jewelry, or craft items).

Supplies:

  • Ribbon. You’ll use about 2 feet or so per necklace depending on how long you’d like yours to hang.  I used green grosgrain ribbon I had on hand.
  • Cotton (frayable…I just made that word up) Fabric. I used a couple shades of pink and green linen that I picked up a long time ago at a thrift store.  Yes, thrift stores often sell fabric remnants for SUPER cheap!  They’re a great place to look, especially if you’re looking for vintage/retro fabrics and prints.
  • Beads. I had an old bracelet with small green glass beads (I’m pretty sure I bought it from the $Dollar Store a while back) that I just took apart and used the beads from.  Any beads, jewels, or buttons, would work for the center of your flowers.
  • Needle and thread in coordinating/matching colors as your fabric.
  • Sharp scizzors.

Thats all you need to make these lovely little bib necklaces!  This takes minimal sewing skills (I didn’t use a machine at all) and about 1 hour or so to make two.  Lets get started!

  1. Get your supplies ready to go.  Cut your ribbon pieces (2 per necklace) to the length that you’d like (I think it looks great to have the bib part of the necklace sitting along or just below your collar bone).  Pick out your beads (I did 3 beads per flower).  And cut out your flower fabric(s) into a long strip about 6 inches or so wide.  
  2. Take the “backing” fabric (in this case I used the green linen as my backing/leaf fabric), fold it in half.  Cut a moon (or smile) shape out of that fabric to use as your bib backing.If you are making 2 necklaces at a time, cut 2.  Below is about what yours should look like.  You can adjust the size,length, and width of the bib backing to your liking depending on how big you’d like your flowers to be.
  3. Set that piece aside and grab your strip of flower fabric(s).  Fold that strip in half or thirds (depending on how much fabric you have and how many layers you want in your flowers).  Begin cutting that strip into rectangular strips getting smaller as you get to the end of the fabric.  This is hard to explain but basically you’re cutting out stacked pieces of fabric from biggest to smallest to cut your various sized circles from that will be making up the layers to each of your flowers.  Does that make sense?  Heres an example.
  4. Once you have your fabric stacks ready to go, cut circles out of each stack, big, less big, medium, and small or however you see fit.  You can make as many circles in as many different sizes as you’d like.  The idea is just that you want to get a pretty full flower once you stack the different sized circles on top of each other from biggest to smallest.
  5. And thats exactly what we’re going to do now.  Stack your circles on top of each other from biggest to smallest.  I cut both my flower fabrics together so I separated them by color and make 3 flowers out of each fabric for my two necklaces.  I also made stacked leaves to use (I only ended up using them on one of the necklaces) and I layed out my necklaces to see what I liked best before I started stitching everything together.
  6. Once you get a plan in place you can begin stitching your stacks together to form your flowers.  This is where my light pink bib necklace and my dark pink bib necklace differ somewhat.  For my light pink flowers I simply stitched the circles together directly through the center of each stack and to the backing fabric to give my bib a flatter flower look.  For the dark pink flowers I “gathered” the circles together by stitching a lose circle (wide stitch) through all the layers at once and then pulling the thread tight to make them gather and ruffle a bit.  Then I stitched them to the backing fabric. I love them both but I have to say I like the texture to the ruffled looking bib.  Above is a look at the light pink version.  Below is a look at the dark pink version.Above is a look at how I did the loose gather stitch to my dark pink version.  And below you can see what it looks like once I pulled the thread tight and knotted it off.
  7. Either way you choose to go, sew your flowers to the bib backing fabric you had set aside.
  8. Now, sew your beads into the centers.  You will be sewing through all your layers now including the backing layer.
  9. If you’d like (as I show here above) you can pull at the edges of your fabric flowers to make them fray a bit.  I did this heavily on the light pink necklace but I left the dark pink necklace alone for it to fray as it will on its own.
  10. Now, sew your ribbon pieces to the ends of the bib backing.
  11. If you’d like, you can sew a loose gather stitch along the top of the bib backing and pull slightly to get the bib to curve and ruffle a bit more.  I did this only on my dark pink bib.
  12. Make any adjustments as needed.  You can tack the edges of your flowers together or down to the bib backing if you are using floppier fabric, or you can lengthen/shorten the ribbon.

Thats it!  Doesn’t it just make you feel like going on a pick-nick!  Heres a few tips of other things you can do with this DIY design:

  • Lengthen the ribbon and straighten the backing piece to make a cute springtime sash belt.
  • Tie it up around your neck like a chocker.  (I love this if you’re wearing your hair up).
  • Make your flowers smaller and create a springtime fabric wrist corsage.
  • Leave the ribbon out completely and attach a pin to the back for a sweet bouquet brooch.
  • Straighten the backing piece, and make a sweet ribbon hair band for your little girl or you.

So many things you can do with this tutorial!! I’m excited to see your ideas!  Stay tuned for my next tutorial, “How to Make a Vintage Inspired Birdcage Veil”!  Happy crafting! 🙂

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