Sunday, October 21, 2012

How to Make a Fabric Necklace

Do you have some special fabric at home?  Maybe you still have a small piece of your baby blanket, maybe you kept one of your child's favorite shirts, maybe you have your grandfather's favorite handkerchief he used to tuck into his Sunday suit...

I developed a way to make simple fabric necklaces using these special bits of fabric.  My grandmother was quite the quilter in her day!  She hasn't quilted in years but she saved some tiny quilting squares that had been cut but never made it into a quilt.  I didn't know what to do with them but I knew I couldn't throw them away!

I sell kits to make these necklaces out of your own fabric.  The kits include instructions and some of the hard-to-find materials.  I thought it was time to share the instructions with you all!

Gather your materials and let's get crafting!

pendant, necklace chain, interfacing, and sponge come in the kit


                pendant tray
                necklace chain
                fabric interfacing
                cosmetic sponge            
                glue (I recommend Aleene’s Clear Gel Tacky Glue)
                clothing iron and ironing board

Full instructions after the jump.

 Choosing your fabric: 

You want a lightweight fabric.  Anything too thick will not fit inside the pendant tray.  Cotton quilting fabric, woven garment fabrics, t-shirts, and lightweight flowy fabrics work well.  If your fabric is thick enough that it rises above the edges of the pendant tray, your results will not be as clean.

Before you begin: 

Wash and dry your fabric.  Follow proper laundering instructions for the fabric you will be using.  Do not use fabric softener.

To make sure your fabric fits into the tray and looks the way you want it to look, pretest your fabric.  You have two squares of interfacing in your kit.  One is for the pretest and the other is for the final pendant.  Follow the instructions below but do NOT glue the test fabric into the pendant tray when you are testing your fabric.  Use a part of the fabric you are not in love with when you are testing.

Steps to create your necklace: 

STEP 1:  Place your fabric WRONG SIDE UP on your ironing board.  In other words: figure out what side you want showing for your necklace.  Place that side face down.

STEP 2:  Place the interfacing ROUGH SIDE DOWN on the wrong side of your fabric.  The circle I drew on the interfacing will be facing up.  Place the circle over the spot you want showing on your necklace.  It may help to hold your fabric and interfacing up against a window so you can see through it.  

(Note to blog readers - I draw circles on the interfacing for the kits.  If you are using your own tray, you'll need to measure and trace!)

Place fabric wrong side up, place interfacing paper side up

Hold fabric and interfacing up to window to place it in just the right spot!
STEP 3:  Set your iron to its highest setting (or for cotton) and make sure the iron is set to DRY.  Wait until the iron is hot and then iron the interfacing onto the fabric.  Press the iron onto the fabric for 5 - 8 seconds.  Make sure the interfacing is completely adhered to your fabric.  Set your fabric aside and let cool. 

TIP:  You will eventually peel this backing off your fabric.  When I let my fabric cool for more than an hour, it’s much easier to peel and I get a better edge.  I often let the fabric cool overnight.

STEP 4:  Cut out the fabric using the circle I drew as a guide (cut just inside the circle I drew).  Make sure the fabric fits into the pendant tray.  Trim as necessary. 

When the fabric is cut to fit, carefully peel the paper backing off the interfacing.  If the paper is difficult to peel, set the fabric aside and let cool for another hour. 


Test and trim if necessary.

It fits!

Peel off paper backing.
 STEP 5:  Wipe out the pendant tray with a clean, dry cloth.  Squirt a small amount of glue onto the center of the tray.  Using the cosmetic sponge, spread a thin, even layer of glue over the bottom of the pendant tray.  Make sure the glue goes all the way to the edges of the tray.

A small amount of glue will do.
Use the sponge to create an thin and even layer of glue.  Don't forget the edges!
STEP 6:  Put the fabric in the pendant tray.  Use your fingers to carefully smooth the fabric and gently press it into the glue.  Use your pinky finger nail (or ring finger nail) to smooth the very edges where the pads of your fingers can’t reach. 

Why use your pinky/ring finger?  They are weaker and won’t tug the fabric around but will still press the fabric into the glue.

Carefully press your fabric into the tray.  

Smooth the very edges of the fabric, too!
STEP 7:  Let your pendant dry.  You’re done!  Enjoy your necklace!


  1. This is such a cute project.
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    p.s. please feel free to also check out my blog to learn more about me and how my business got started

  2. Where can I get a necklace chain from?


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