Unless you missed the memo: Chokers are in. Everything from dainty chord tied in a bow, to lace, to the 90s classic tattoo choker have all made their way into our wardrobes recently. They are such a quick way to enhance any outfit, from casual to chic, you can throw one on, and elevate your whole look.
I happened to be browsing on Instagram the other day, and stumbled onto this post from jewelry designer, Sophie Buhai, who I was not familiar with before, but am since a huge fan! Her work is timeless, elegant, effortless, and simple—all things that I love.
One of her latest pieces is this stunning black choker adorned with falling pearls. It has this romantic minimalism quality that I die for, so I had to recreate it for myself! Note: if you are interested in buying her piece, it looks like it's intended for holiday, so keep your eyes peeled for a release date.
All credit for this goes to Sophie, I just wanted to have something similar (on a budget), and of course, I wanted to share this with you all, because I'm sure you'll be curious about it when it comes up in my next posts!
WHAT YOU'LL NEED
Black thread & Needle
Wire cutters (optional)
My pearls, and closure were from Michael's craft store, and ribbon was from a local fabric store.
1. Measure your ribbon around your neck, and cut the excess. You can use a piece of string or ribbon to make a measurement first, then cut the velvet, it's up to you. I found it easier to just hold the velvet around my neck, mark the spot with my fingernail, and then make a cut.
I would start slightly larger than what you need, and make small adjustments to your preference of fit, if you're nervous about cutting too much.
2. Lightly burn the ends of your ribbon with a lighter (please be careful), this will seal the ends, and keep it from unraveling.
3. Center your closure* in the middle of your ribbon on one end, and begin to sew it down with your black thread, and needle. Start your stitches on the reverse side (non-velvet side) of the ribbon to hide the knots, and do anywhere from 5-6 stitches to hold down the closure. Repeat on the other end to secure the other part of your closure.
*I went with a toggle clasp, but experiment with any type you like.
4. On the reverse side of your ribbon, measure 2" from the end of the ribbon on each side, and then add a chalk mark at an 1" interval. Then take your ruler and draw a line horizontally at any measurement you like—I wanted my pearls to be 3/4 of the way down, so I eyeballed where I wanted it, and drew a line with my ruler. This step is important, because it creates crosslines right where you should be making your stitch for each pearl, and it ensures that they will be in as straight a line as possible.
5. This step is optional, but if you want less dangly pearls, remove the larger ring from your charm with wire cutters, or use scissors to pry them open and remove them. I wanted my pearls to lay flat and not move when I wear my necklace, so I removed the rings before fastening them to my ribbon.
6. Start each stitch on the reverse side of your ribbon, right where your chalk lines intersect, pull your needle through to the front, and make a stitch around the ring, and back into the reverse side. This is just a basic stitch, and I go around each 4-5 times to make it really secure.
Once I make all my necessary stitches, ending with the needle back through the reverse side, I gently push my needle underneath my stitches, and pull it through, creating a loop, gently pull until your loop gets smaller, then right before you pull all the way, stick your needle inside the loop, and pull all the way, creating a knot. I do this 2-3 times per each charm, to really fasten it down.
7. Repeat until you have secured all your charms; for ten total charms, it took me about an hour, but the end result is totally worth it!
I hope you guys enjoyed this, let me know if there's any questions and I'd be happy to help! Happy DIYing!
Photography: Tasha James
Inspiration: Sophie Buhai