[D.I.Y. Tutorial] Ridiculously easy 5-min Ribbon Necklace!

MbM_DIY-Tutorial_Quick-Ribbon-Necklace-MAIN Well folks, another week gone by and I must say I’m pleased to see the skies looking a lot brighter in the last two days! After all that rain you’d wonder if it could actually rain any more!? Probably could but hey, let’s hope not!! Anyway, this week’s DIY tutorial is a bit of a quick one; more of a make, mend, do tip than actually getting all crafty. That being said, it’s a great thing to know because the possibilities are endless.

So, I’m going to share with you how to make you’re little statement necklace with ribbons and any kind of looooong beaded necklace you already have in your collection that probably haven’t worn in a while. These ribbon necklaces are trending right now so it’s great to know that you can simply give an old long necklace a new lease of life. Here’s what you do (it’s SUPER EASY)

  1. You need a very long beaded necklace (one that you can double or triple up length) and some plain coloured ribbon. Depending on the colour of your beads, chose a ribbon that would work well.
  2. Double up your beaded necklace (or triple it if it’s even longer) and lay it flat on your work top, as seen in the photo. Get some ribbon long enough for you to have it comfortably tie around your neck. Feel free to measure this against you otherwise roughly cut 60-70cm in length from the reel.
  3. Now cut this length of ribbon into half so you’re left with two sets of 30-35cm pieces of ribbon.
  4. Tie each ribbon at the ends of the doubled necklace in a tight and tidy little knot. Make sure they are precisely at each ends of the necklace if you want it to sit/fall nicely around your neck.

MbM_DIY-Tutorial_Quick-Ribbon-Necklace-1WEBAnd hey presto you have yourself a statement ribbon necklace using. The great thing I love about this is that you can always remove the ribbons should you wish to wear the necklace in it’s former state. It’s versatile and you easily can keep up with the trends with this simple ‘upcycling’ method! This necklace featured in this post has been worn like ten times already – I absolutely love it! :) I’m totally going to play around with some old, ridiculously long, pearl necklaces I have and perhaps even combine it with beaded necklaces to create a seriously CHUNKY statement necklace. I’ll keep you posted when I do! In the meantime, I hope this is been of some help to you! Sorry it’s a short one this week but I’ve been rather swamped with several projects (a DIY wedding tutorial for a wedding blog, a wedding styled shoot and some logo design work) which has left me with no choice but to keep my head down this week. I’ll be back with something much bigger and creative next week, I promise! Enjoy folks xxMbM_DIY-Tutorial_Quick-Ribbon-Necklace-2WEB [Image credit: ©MadebyMolu]

[D.I.Y. Valentine’s Special] Last-minute Love Heart Necklace

MbM_DIY-Tutorial_Clay-Heart-Beads-VD_MAINOoooh I totally forgot about these heart-shaped beads! I had them made at the same time as the clay beaded neckace tutorial and completely forgot that I had left them on the sill to dry! Well, haven’t I found them in the nick of time! So here’s another Valentine’s Special DIY project; making your very own heart-shaped necklace out of clay, nail polish, coloured thread and ribbon! SIMPLE! :)

Like the last time, I painted these with red nail varnish giving it a generous two coats which literally takes about a couple of minutes to set. Once dry, and still with the toothpicks through them (to avoid getting paint on your fingers!), take one bead at a time and apply some PVA glue thoroughly all over. Then quickly take you chosen coloured thread and wrap it around the bead, in a way that it creates a pretty funky pattern. Set aside to dry and repeat the procedure with the other beads.

MbM_DIY-Tutorial_Clay-Heart-Beads-VD_2-WEBAfter all the beads have been entwined in the thread and completely dry, take some 2mm ribbon (you can use twine or chord again like the last one) that compliments the rest of the colours and string it through the beads. Now the trick with this part i.e. when having to feed ribbons through beads with much smaller holes, is to get a needle and thread….and then tie the end of that thread onto the end of the ribbon firmly. Then push the needle through the bead and you should soon be guiding the ribbon through too! It’s as simple as that! Make sure you have enough ribbon to be able to tie it around your neck in a comfortable bow. It’s wise to adjust the length on you before cutting the ribbon and always include and extra 20cm for the bow (plus it gives you room for adjustment!)

And that’s it folks – its sooooo simple, sooooo quick and soooo effective. And if you’re lucky, you could get to wear it out to your Valentine’s Dinner! :D And feel free to totally jazz it up further – the choices are endless but at least now you know how easily you can come up with a funky necklace! It’s a great project for you last-minute folk! :)

Enjoy my lovelies and have a wonderful week in the run up to Valentine’s Day! I can totally feel all the Love in the Air! ;) Oh and if you try any of these projects please do share them with me!  MWAH! x x x x

MbM_DIY-Tutorial_Clay-Heart-Beads-VD_1-WEB [Image Credit: ©Made by Molu]

[D.I.Y. Tutorial] Funky clay beaded necklace

MbM_DIY-Tutorial_Clay-Beaded-NecklaceHello folks! I hope you’re all having a good week so far! Well, if it’s as miserable as the weather today here in London then perhaps this DIY tutorial will cheer you up. You can’t beat a bit of craftiness to kick that mid-week blues in the bum. So here’s a super easy project that I had conjured up last week which shows you how to make some funky beaded necklace out of air-drying modelling clay, twine and nail polish! Yep….it’s as simple as that! Just THREE main materials! :)  It’s all about how you can make something pretty out of ordinary (or in this case quite limited) materials kicking about in the house. Just because you don’t have all the ‘right’ art/craft materials at hand doesn’t mean you can’t do anything creative!

I had some DAS clay in my craft box for quite some time and had been meaning to make something with it, from ornaments to jewellery but always had something or another missing to feel like I couldn’t quite achieve/complete my handmade ideas. So while I’m missing all the ‘proper’ clasps and links or paints and varnish for jewellery making, I wanted to see if I could come up with something just as effective. So, if you have the following, then you have no excuse to try it out! And of course, you can add and tweak it with whatever materials you have! It’s all about having fun and letting that inner child in you to push those crafty boundaries! Now, I need to apologise for the photos in this post as they were taken with my iPhone after having issues with my SD card for my DSLR….so it’s not the sharpest of images – sorry!

MATERIALS / SUPPLIES: 

MbM_DIY-Tutorial_Clay-Beaded-Necklace-31.Toothpicks / 2.Nail varnish of your choice / 3.Twine / 4. DAS modelling clay

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Take a lump of DAS air-drying clay and divide them up into smaller lumps, roughly all the same size so that your beads all look consistent. I used enough to make three 2.5cm (1inch) beads. Now you can have assorted sizes. The good things about this, is that you don’t have to be to perfect with the size or shape, and you can make as many as you want, depending on the style you have in mind. I wanted something that I could wear around my collared shirts and blouses.
  2. Now, take each lump between your palms and roll them into rough spherical shapes. Don’t worry if they aren’t perfect because it does add a lovely handmade charm to the final product. The main thing is to avoid any visible cracks as they would tend to crack further when drying. If you find any, simply wet that area with a little bit of water to smooth the cracks out.
  3. Once you have shaped your beads, take a toothpick and insert it into one end of the bead and push it through in a rotary motion, as though your drilling through. This is a much gentler method than just pushing and avoids cracks or lumps at the ends. Try and make sure that you are creating a clean hole and one that would be big enough to fit your twine/cord through. Remember that when the clay dries, it shrinks a little so it is wise to make the hole a tad bit larger to accommodate any shrinkage. Leave the beads to air-dry. This can take up to a whole day depending on the climate of your home. So if don’t live somewhere sunny and warm or just want to speed up the drying process a bit, you can place it on the lowest heat in an oven. Air-drying clay is best left out to dry as it relies on the evaporative process but if placed in an oven make sure it’s on the lowest heat setting, leave the oven door slightly ajar and keep monitoring it every 10 minutes as drying too quickly can create some serious cracks! MbM_DIY-Tutorial_Clay-Beaded-Necklace-1
  4. So, once you’re beads are all dry, the next stage is to paint them. Because I didn’t have the ‘right’ paints or varnish for clay, the next best thing I had, was nail polish! Not only does it do the job well (with the added sheen!) it also dries up really quick! Clever right? :D I picked out pinks and purples nail varnishes for that pop of colour and some sparkly gold glitter for that extra bit of sparkle!
  5. Apply at least two coats all over to give it a good all round shine. Use toothpicks to prop the beads up while you paint them so to avoid getting any on your fingers!
  6. You can then stick them into something like a lump of glue-tack for a hands-free drying method! Depending on your varnish, they shouldn’t take any more than a couple of minutes to dry but leave it there for 5 mins to be extra safe.
  7. MbM_DIY-Tutorial_Clay-Beaded-Necklace-2Et Voila! Your beads all painted and ready to be strung into a funky new necklace! Now at this stage you can add other embellishments or smaller beads should you feel the need to jazz it up. And if you do actually have proper clasps, links and chains for jewellery making then go ahead and use them. For the purpose of this tutorial, I’m just going to show you how you can still achieve creating a necklace by using materials like twine or cord, if you don’t have all the fancy stuff at hand!
  8. To string your beads up together, first decide how you’d like to place them to having to re-string your necklace several times! Then, decide the length of your necklace so you know where how much of the twine/cord you will need for that. You can use other necklaces you have as guidance or simply measure it around your neck to see where you’d like the necklace to sit. Just make sure you always add an extra couple of inches to be able to tie your bow/knot! I cut roughly 80cm in length for the necklace to sit just around the shirt collars. Now, feed the twine/cord through the holes of the beads and tie the ends together in a bow. That’s your necklace all made and ready to be teamed up with some smart-casual outfit! MbM_DIY-Tutorial_Clay-Beaded-Necklace-4

Like I said, this is the most basic of necklaces you can make out of those three materials and you can obviously add whatever else you have kicking about to make it a lot more fancier! I had made some heart-shaped beads at the same time as these but will show you another time what I mean about going that extra mile to make it even more funkier. For now, I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and that it’s inspired you to get crafty despite the limited materials you have at home. And this is also super child-friendly too so go have fun making necklaces with your little ‘uns! Oh and if you do try this, please do take photos of your creations and post them onto my Facebook page so I can have a nosey. Just remember to add the hashtag #craftwithmolu when you do! Enjoy! x x x

MbM_DIY-Tutorial_Clay-Beaded-Necklace-5  [Image Credit: ©Made by Molu]

 

[Our D.I.Y. Wedding] Bridesmaids’ bling

Having chosen a more ‘western’ style dress for the bridesmaids, it was essential that I had them customised someway to add that ‘eastern’ touch so it reflected my ‘east-meets-west’ theme. To achieve this elegant fusion of both cultures, I knew the dresses needed to be teamed up with Indian embellishments and accessories –  a combination of gold detailing and pops of bright colours. With that in mind I rummaged through numerous haberdasheries, vintage markets and jewellery shops across London, picking up tons of inspiration and a bunch of assorted sparkled goodies to go with it…..I was in my element! And it sure brought out the inner magpie I never knew existed! :D

I decided to make an embellished brooch that the girls could simply affix to their dresses on the morning of the wedding. With my bridesmaids based in three different places prior to the wedding (London, Glasgow and Cleveland, Ohio!), it seemed the most practical option.  The brooch was made up of three segments of coloured stones which I had dismantled from what was once a bracelet. These were carefully secured using the glue-gun onto a 4cm x 7cm piece of cobalt blue felt fabric that matched perfectly with the dress and fitted beautifully in the center of the ruffled detail of the bust area where the one shouldered strap had once been attached. Its all about customising what you’ve got………..”make, do and mend” as they say! :)

MbM_Our-Wedding_accessories_1-(web)Next up was the tikka – a traditionally Indian piece of jewellery worn on the head by women during festivities including weddings – which I decided to make myself for the girls by using an assortment of  beads and stones (some taken from other jewellery), linking them up with gold wire,with the help of my faithful pliers, and finally fastening it onto a gold chain that was cut to measure (about 8-10cm in length). All that multiplied by three…..et voila! :) I got these, the brooches, and their earrings (these were bought!) wrapped up in cute individual little parcels which I presented to my lovely ladies, along with their bangles and flowers, on the morning of the wedding.

Once I get hold of our professional photos, I shall post a few up so you can see how it all came together on the day!! I do hope you like what you see! :)