Tuesday, July 31, 2012

DIY Double-Piercing Chain Earring

I'm pretty sure this is the quickest, easiest, cheapest, and least complicated DIY I've ever done. So easy, it makes me want to make 100 more of them! I'm in LOVE! I whipped this up right before work so I could wear it for my long shift, and I got so many compliments on it! People couldn't believe I made it. Definitely put a smile on my face! :)

Here's how to make your own.

You'll need:
  • 2 ball studs w/ loop (Jo-Ann, $1.11!)
  • Thin chain of the same color (again, grabbed myself an 18" chain from Jo-Ann for $1.11)
  • 2 jump rings (yet again, Jo-Ann, $1.11!) (yes, there are way more than 2 in the picture) (parentheses spree!)

Told ya it was cheap!

Now. Ready to whip it up in 3 steps?

1. Take your chain (unless you've bought very short chains, unlikely) and cut to the desired length. I held the chain up to my ear to decide how long I wanted it, and cut it just a tiny bit longer than what I wanted; Better to have to cut some off than to be too short & not able to add! I cut mine roughly 3.5" and 4" (like I said...roughly).

2. Attach the chains to a jump ring, and then slide the jump ring through the loop on the bottom of the stud. I only have one chain attached in the picture below.

3. Attach the other end of the chains to another jump ring, and attach that to the other earring!

All done! Now wear proudly! :)

I'm also thinking about using a little bit of the leftover chain to make another earring for my left ear (which is not pierced on the cartilage) so I can have a semi-matching one (I don't have a lot of gold jewelry to match this). Maybe two different length chains hanging from the stud, but a little shorter? Perhaps? I dunno, give it a try and add your own flair to it!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Vera Bradley-Inspired Chain Lanyard

The second I saw my friend's Vera Bradley lanyard, I was in love. I'd never seen one like it before, and knew I could make it myself, so I set out to do just that!

I haven't seen any other brand selling these, nor have I come across a tutorial for them. So here you go--maybe I'm first! Hope you all enjoy.

You'll need:

  • Fabric (roughly twice the length of your chain, to be safe) - I bought a quilting square at Jo-Ann Fabrics for $1 and had to cut it diagonally and double THAT up.
  • Chain (I bought mine at Michael's for $3.99) - The length is purely personal preference; I made mine 24" because I'm short and don't want a lanyard hanging down to my knees if I have it in my pocket!
  • Wire cutters - This is only if you'll need to cut off excess chain. I bought mine at 48" and knew I only wanted my lanyard to be 24".
  • Scissors
  • Swivel latch(es)/clip(s) - I chose to use 2, simply because I was copying the Vera Bradley model, but you could use 1 and sew both ends of the lanyard to 1 latch to make it easier on yourself. These can be found in the purse-making section of a craft store.
  • Key Ring
  • Needle & thread OR Sewing machine
  • It also helps to have a large sewing needle (yarn size) to thread the fabric through the chain.
  • Jump rings (if you don't want to sew the fabric to the latches)

Start by cutting the chain to the desired length, if it needs to be cut. If you have a heavy duty chain like I did, you might have to bend the chain a little while you cut to loosen it. 
Then cut the fabric as long as needed (better too long than too short!), about 1" to 1 1/2" wide. If you, like me, have to double up fabric, sew the two strips together at the ends, right sides facing together. Then, fold the strip in half, with right sides facing together again, and sew down the length of the entire fabric strip. This part is MUCH easier with a sewing machine. Now you're going to turn the strip inside-out so it's like a tube. Unless you're a beast at this, I'd recommend using a small safety pin or something, and hooking it to the edge of the fabric and threading it through the inside, thus turning the fabric right side out. Be patient and gentle, it does take a little time, and you wouldn't want to rip it.

Once you have the pretty side facing out, thread it through your big sewing needle (if you have one), and begin to thread the fabric through the chain as shown.

After you've threaded it through a few links, take the fabric at the beginning of the chain and thread it through the same link it's currently in again to secure it. That'll make it so if you're pulling, your previous work won't come undone.

Continue threading the rest of the chain, then secure the end just as you did for the beginning. Cut off any excess fabric, leaving yourself about 1" to 1 1/2" to put the swivel latch on. Thread this fabric through the ring on the latch, and double over before sewing (using either the sewing machine or needle & thread) to secure to the latch. 

Repeat for the other side, and then attach your key ring!

TA-DA! So pretty! Now go put all your cute little keychains on it (and your keys, of course...and maybe a school ID?). I couldn't resist adding my favorite keychain that I got when I was in Africa last summer!

Share (with credit, please!), comment, etc., and enjoy!


Sunday, July 8, 2012

Happy Cherry Fest Week!

This week is the National Cherry Festival, and I couldn't resist making a cherry-themed iPhone case to go with my love for summertime in my city!

I know it's not a good photo at all, but I just wanted to share :) I found cherry stock and then put some darker pink stripes behind it, if y'all can't tell. The colors are pretty thrown off by the horrible quality webcam I have... Anyway, if you haven't seen my post about how to design iPhone cases in Photoshop, click here!

Hope everyone is having a fabulous July so far :)