How to make a worn out Collar into Baroque Collar Necklace
I really enjoy taking something that would normally end up in the trash and make it into a something beautiful, into something that is desirable. Upcycling is for me one of the best of human achievements -using our innate creativity to uplift and improve ourselves and our environment. Imagine applying it to all aspects of live.
This once was one of favourite silk shirt but eventually the collar and cuffs became worn through and frayed, and the fabric just started to tear. I so loved the shirt that shared many enjoyable moments with me that I was determined to recycle all of it. ( I have already been using some of the fabric to start mending my piano shawl – more about that “long-mend” in an upcoming post.)
I did not take a pic to show the state of the collar was in before I began, as my initial idea was to cut off the collar leaf and to just make choker from the collar stand with the lace and pearl beading, as in my sketch. My daughter really wanted a full collar so it was back to the drawing board. I decided to a reversible Baroque collar that could be worn folded up or down.
You may want to use this idea to make a Baroque choker as it is an easy way of fastening a choker necklace with the button at the back.
The pic below of the cuff will give you an idea what the collar looked like. (I have ideas for the cuffs too!)
What do you need to do this project?
For this project I decided not to buy anything but only use what I already had. I am sure if you are already sewing you will have the materials needed:
- An old shirt
- Sewing thread matching the shirt colour
- Embroidery thread
- Beading and Embroidery Needles
- Pearls and Beads
- Lace to trim the collar (optional) – I used a piece of left over lace from another project
Step One: Cut off the collar, or if you want to do it properly unpick the stitches to separate the collar from the shirt and resew. I just hate unpicking .
Step 3: Once I have mended the collar, I sewed vintage glass seed beads all around the edges of the collar that I salvaged from an old dress. (How to embroider with beads)
Step 4: For the embroidery I used only two stitches running stitch and lazy daisy stitch. I worked out the design freehand – first to hide the mending and then I filled in the gaps to make it pretty. Still really simple so that even a beginner can do it. Freehand embroidery is for me like Zentangle – you start at one place and the design develops. The best way to understand the process is to have a look at the basics of Zentangle.
Step 5: After I finished the basic embroidery with beading, I sewed on the lace on the front parts of the collar.
Step 7: To link the lace with the rest of the design I continued the embroidery and beading so that it formed a cohesive design as you can see in the pictures.
Finished! This will give you an idea how to transform what is basically a piece of scrap into a treasure.