April 7, 2014

DIY Monday: Lace Strip Sweater

Filed under: Clothing,DIY,Fashion,Style,Wardrobe — by twistedchic @ 6:07 pm
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DIY Monday is now brought to you by thursday.  And the letter L~ (tl:dr diymonday’s hiatus is over)

The lace panel trend is not going anywhere, tbh.  And why should it?  It’s fabulous!  Also a great way to add texture to an outfit (and some interest to an otherwise plain wardrobe staple.  Like this Loft sweater:



I fell in love with this gorgeous antique lace, and bought it without a specific project in mind.  But it’s a perfect match with my new sweater~


Trim lace to fit (but leave a little extra to fold under and in case fabric stretches).  Then pin the lace to the sweater.  Be sure to center the lace carefully, so you don’t end up with an unfortunately crooked result~


Then just pop it in your sewing machine and straight stitch.  You could even do this by hand if you don’t have a sewing machine.  And voila!


Super-easy diy lace strip sweater.


August 28, 2013

Some Things Old, Some Things New

Filed under: Accessories,Art,DIY,Fashion,Jewelry,Style — by twistedchic @ 8:04 pm
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So I’m finally getting around to posting all my uploaded earrings photos, like I’ve been meaning to do.  My friend K asked to see some pics of a pair of blue pearls, and I promised I’d send her the link, so here is all the jewelry I’ve been meaning to get around to showing off~

August 22, 2013

August Projects

Filed under: Accessories,DIY,Jewelry — by twistedchic @ 2:53 am
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August has been very empty here, because I’m currently working on filling several commisions~

My friend H is getting married, but couldn’t find anything she liked to wear with her dress.  So I stepped in to the rescue!

Here’s her necklace:


It’s mother of pearl, seed pearls, and some beautiful aventurine rectangular beads.  Sweet H wanted something a little bit funky for her country-themed wedding.  She’s also wearing cowboy boots with her dress, which is just adorable~

I’ve also made her earrings and a bracelet to match, and am working on necklaces for each of her five bridesmaids~  Her accent color is yellow, and finding that in pearls has proven quite a challenge.  I’m thinking of substituting honey opals instead, if I can find some.

Updates to come!


July 11, 2013

DIY Monday: Tassel Scarf

Filed under: Accessories,DIY,Fashion,Style — by twistedchic @ 4:27 pm
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DIY Monday is now brought to you by Thursday, and the letter L.

I recently lost my favorite scarf (sadness) so I’ve been searching for a replacement.  Nothing has really caught my eye, so I decided that DIY was the way to go~  With that in mind, I bought some lovely white fabric, with a thin metallic stripe which looked perfect for scarf-makin’.

For this project you will need: 1 yard of fabric, pinking shears, a small cardboard rectangle, embroidery thread and a large gauge needle.


Cut your scarf.  Mine is square, and about 36 inches on each side.  Cutting with pinking shears gives you a nice ragged edge which is resistant to ravelling.  Next, wash your fabric, then trim any thread ends which may have formed.

And now for some tassels~

Wrap your embroidery thread around the cardboard square 6-10 times, depending on the desired thickness of your tassel (no that’s what she said jokes, please, I hear them enough at work)


Snip at the bottom, then tie a longer thread around the middle.  Tie another thread around the entire bundle, about 1/2 an inch down.  Knot, and trim ends to match.


Now use your large gauge needs to attach to the corners of your scarf, and voila!  DIY Scarf of brilliance~


June 15, 2013

DIY Friday: Jacket to Vest

Filed under: Clothing,DIY,Fashion — by twistedchic @ 3:41 pm
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DIY Friday is now brought to you by Saturday.  And the letter G~

I’ve been wanting to try the cargo vest trend ever since I saw what Putting Me Together did with hers.  But I hadn’t really seen any I liked.  Until I found this Aeropostyle jacket at the local thrift store.  The fit was problematic; the sleeves made the jacket pull at the chest, but I thought it would be perfect with them removed.


The jacket was lined (which usually makes alterations more difficult than they’re worth) but fortunately the lining stopped at the sleeves.  And I really loved the contrast of the feminine floral lining and the tough grey cargo vest~

Inside-out shoulder view

Inside-out shoulder view

All I had to do was (carefully) snip the sleeves off; no sewing required with this DIY!  The key to this alteration is using the right scissors, I use a pair of tiny, tiny folding scissors I inherited from my grandma.

These tiny sharp scissors give you the perfect amount of control for delicate cuts

These tiny sharp scissors give you the perfect amount of control for delicate cuts

I washed the newly snipped vest, and trimmed any ravelling edges.


Super-easy cargo vest DIY!  And this alteration completely solved the fit at the chest problem, so double yay~

May 27, 2013

DIY Spoon Earrings: 2 of 3

Filed under: Accessories,DIY,Fashion,Jewelry,Style — by twistedchic @ 3:21 am
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Spoon Earrings 2: Electric Boogaloo!  No, but seriously, these are my favorite.  I loved the embellished middle part of the spoons, and couldn’t wait to try making earrings with these pieces.  They look lovely with some little rectangular chips of malachite I got right here in Chicagoland.


For this project you will need: earwires, eyepins, spacer chain, the middle section of your spoons, and two beads.  Plus the assorted tools, plyers, snippers, etc.

You’ve already drilled the holes for the spoon mid section, before you chopped up the spoon, so to finish this part, just round out the top and bottom edges, then sand and finish as in the above picture.

Thread your first bead through the eyepin, then make a large loop at the bottom, leaving some space to wrap the excess wire around.  Before you start to wrap, slide the spoon bit onto the large loop, then wrap the top so this piece is secured.


 Thread the next eyepin through the second bead, then put a loop at the bottom.  Attach your two beads with the spacer chain, and fix the entire length onto the earwire.



May 14, 2013

DIY Monday: Blue Agate Ombre Earrings

Filed under: Accessories,Art,DIY,Fashion,Jewelry,Style — by twistedchic @ 3:15 am
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DIY Monday is now brought to you by the letter D~

I found the loveliest string of blue agates rondelles at the beading store.  The strand had many different shades of the same robin’s egg blue, so I knew they would be perfect for a pair of ombre earrings.  First I unstrung them and sorted them into about 7 shade categories.  Then I got started with my earrings.  This is what you’ll need, in addition to the usual tools and such: 4 twist jump rings, 2 inches of silver wire 14 gauge or above, 2 earwires, and 14 beads sorted from light to dark.


Start by flattening your silver wire (it comes on a roll so it has a slight natural curve).  Take it to your anvil and flatten out about 3/4 of an inch.  Place a pair of pliers on either side of the flattened part and twist 180 degrees.  Twist again if you like, I took it around 2 more times.


Next, string your beads on the top part of the wire, dark to light.  Or vice-versa if that’s what you’re into, no judgement~  Place the top, unflattened part of your wire up against your anvil and flatten out about 1/2 an inch.  Your beads shouldn’t be able to move much up or down on the wire at this point.  Put a loop onto the tip of the wire, this part will stay un-flattened.

This is what your project should look like at this point:


Very carefully, twist the top flattened wire below the loop.  Don’t twist too far, this can break the wire(and it’s a real shame to put this much work into it and have it bust.  Which I did.  Twice.)  Hang your two twist jump rings at the top, and smooth out any rough spots on your wire.

Voila!  Lovely ombre earrings~


April 24, 2013

DIY Spoon Earrings: 1 of 3

Filed under: Accessories,DIY,Fashion,Jewelry,Style,Vintage — by twistedchic @ 9:06 pm
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I’ve been wanting to try making spoon earrings for a while, so when I found a small set at an antique shop, I knew they were perfect for my next project!

I’m chopping the spoons into three parts, for three different projects!


However, chopping them up wasn’t the first step.  So let’s go back to the beginning.

First, this is a tool intensive project.  I bought a Dremel, and I would recommend having one of these, although you could substitute a hacksaw and some sanding blocks for most of the project.  Also, you will need an anvil, a hammer, a vice or clamp, various sandpaper grits, and most importantly SAFETY GLASSES.  I cannot stress the importance of the last enough, especially if you are going to use a Dremel.  It’s all fun and games until you have to go to the emergency room and have bits of metal dug out of your eyeballs!

Step 1.  Texturize the spoon with the ball end of your hammer.  As you can see in the above picture, I dapped the bowl and handle, but left the ornamented part alone.

Step 2. Clamp the spoon to your worktable with the vice, or a clamp, and drill holes.  I was chopping this into three, so I drilled three holes.  The first is in the base of the bowl, the second at the top of the bowl, and the third is midway down the handle. (just a note, you may need a different collet size to fit your drill bits)


Step 3: Chop ‘er up!  Clamp the spoon down and use the wheel bit on your Dremmel to make cuts at the appropriate places.  Remember that the spoon will be HOT, so don’t touch right away.  Or wear gloves like a sensible person. (which I didn’t~)

Step 4: Sand/Grind.  Sand away the rough edges, either with a sanding block or the grinding bit on your dremmel.  This will leave you with some rough scratches, use sandpaper to smooth.  Start with rougher grits like a 600, and work your way down to smoother grits, like a 1500.

Now you have the parts, it’s time to start making the earrings~

Project 1 will utilize the bowl of the spoon.

Here’s what you will need.  Headpins, earwires, focal beads and your dapped spoon bowl:


My focal bead is a lovely dyed shell I picked up at a bead shop here in Chicagoland.  The bowl really reflects light, so this is a great project to emphasize a colorful bead.

Insert the headpin into the bead, then thread through the hole at the top of the spoon bowl.  Bend at the top of the bead allow the bowl to hand vertically.  This will kind of look like a zig-zag.  Then put a loop in the top and wrap the remaining wire around, and attach to your earwire.  Voila!


These earrings are a little heavy, so beware if you have delicate ears~

February 26, 2013

Anvil-Tastic Earrings DIY

Filed under: Accessories,Art,DIY,Fashion,Jewelry — by twistedchic @ 2:04 am
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Have I mentioned how much I love my new anvil?  Once or twice?  Maybe?

I’ve been wanting to make some silver leaf earrings for a while, so after searching the internet for design inspiration… I finally made a new pair!

Before you start, you’ll need: an anvil, a chasing hammer, several types of pliers, files, snippers, the works!

The earrings themselves are made with a heavy gauge silver wire, and the beads are faceted rondelles.

Draw your design on a piece of paper (trust me you don’t want to skip this step)  Measure out two equal lengths of wire.  These were 4.5 inches.  Bend your wire to match the design you have drawn out.  Start with the part you don’t want the bead on (the end of the piece).  Gently file the ends of the wire to remove anything sharp or poke-y.  Repeat for other earrings.  Or don’t, if you like asymmetry, or are making a pendant.

This is what you should have right now.

This is what you should have right now.

Place your design on your anvil, with the top knot  just off the edge.  Start to hammer with the flat side, turning occasionally.  If you want some parts of your design to “flare out” a bit more, hammer those bits more often.


Sexy anvil close up!

This piece has been flattened, and I’ve just begun adding the texture with the rounded side of my hammer.  Your piece will curve a little as you hammer, and you can encourage that by gently rocking it as you hammer, if you like that sort of thing (no judgement!)

Once you are sure you like your finished design, add in your top bead, and secure with a top wrap.  Don’t worry if your earrings aren’t identical (they won’t be), because asymmetry is awesome!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAnd so are your new earrings!

February 12, 2013

DIY Monday: Fun With Anvils!

Filed under: Accessories,DIY,Fashion,Jewelry,Style — by twistedchic @ 3:58 am
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Not. Even. Kidding!  I got a jeweler’s anvil for my birthday, and I’ve been playing with it non-stop.

To celebrate my awesome new toy, todays DIY project is going to be an easy chased metal earring tutorial.  Here’s the finished product, a gift for my awesome friend Ll:


These are the tools you will need: an anvil, chasing hammer, ring pliers, flat pliers, and a small file.


Here’s my beads: four faceted sodalite rondelles and a coin rounded cat’s eye, plus the silver wire in a 12 gauge and an ear wire.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERACut two pieces of equal length from your silver wire, then bend small loops into one end of both pieces.  Slide your larger bead onto the wire, making sure that the bead’s hole will fit your gauge of wire (no that’s what she said jokes, please, I get them enough at work).  I put a slight curve into the wire before I began chasing it, but that’s entirely optional.   Hold your beaded wire up to the edge of the anvil, and commence hitting it with your hammer.  Rotate the piece so both side are evenly hammered (god, these jokes write themselves!).  When you have reached the desired shape, gently round the ends with a file (or an emory board will do in a pinch). Repeat with the other wire.  Your pieces should now look like this:


Cut two more equal length pieces of wire.  Put a loop into one end of your silver wire, then string your other beads.  Put another loop on at the bottom, then slip your top and bottom pieces together.  Attach the earwire.  If you want to make sure your earring is as shiny as it can possibly be, pour a little baking soda onto a wet paper towel and rub the metal bits in this for a minute.  Shiny, shiny~

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAnd voila!  Enjoy your beautiful new earrings!

Next time on DIY Monday: texturizing!

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