My 15 minute DIY Birthday Girl Necklace is a perfect gift last minute gift (if you’ve got a craft stash) and helps introduce basic sewing skills to young ones.
A month or so ago my 3-year-old daughter was invited to a birthday hike and picnic. First of all, I think it’s awesome that instead of having a garden variety party, this outdoors mama arranged something truly different. Since we’d be doing a “bush walk” (as they call it in Australia) for 30 minutes to a beautiful overhang, picnicking, then walking 30 minutes back to the car we didn’t want to lug a heavy gift. Also, we confirmed our attendance last minute and didn’t have time to shop for a gift.
I sat down at the kitchen table and tried to put my craft hat on and immediately thought “Hey, we should make her a birthday girl necklace!” My daughter was on board because she always wants to help me sew, so we got out the materials. I will note that I didn’t include cutting fabric scraps in the “15 minutes” which, in retrospect, I should have. But all in all, including cutting the scraps, setting up the sewing machine, and giving my daughter a few simple instructions the whole thing didn’t take longer than 30 minutes set up to tear down.
Note: measures are approximate, I used my 3-year-old daughter as a guide, but this size necklace will fit most small children ages 3-6 or so.
So, the supplies you’ll need are:
- 2″ x 18″ piece of jersey or knit fabric
- see my yellow and white fabric above
- 20″ strand of pom pom yarn
- 1.5″ x 7″ fabric scraps
- I used 3 different types of fabric and ended up trimming them after the necklace was made to be the shape and length I preferred
Sew the knit fabric into a ruffle. Here are some good tutorials for that. Stretchy fabric is handy here because it allows some give when the child puts the necklace on. My 3-year-old daughter helped me during this step. She sat on my lap and helped position and place the ruffle and run it through the machine. I didn’t let her do it alone, but she was quite helpful and really enjoyed sewing like her mama. Her sewing skills will probably surpass mine. By next year.
Take the pom pom yarn and fold it in half so there are two strands. Place the ruffle and the yarn in a circle position, as shown above, and sew the ends together so you have a circle. Or more accurately an oval. But really it’s a necklace. Two strands aren’t necessary, but I found it made the bottom of the necklace more full because I was able to knot on the fabric scraps on alternating strands of yarn which gave it more body.
Knot on the fabric scraps to the yarn alternating fabrics in whatever way you prefer. I knotted one strand at a time, alternating fabrics, then alternated the second strand and tried to fill in the visual gaps crated by the first. My daughter had a harder time tying the knots tightly here, but still helped out during the process by choosing which fabric and looping the scraps on the yarn. Technically, after this step you’re done! The necklace will be full and wearable.
Optional Step 4
A few years ago when I had more time and inclination to sew, I created personalized labels on Spoonflower. You can find out how to do that here. I thought it’d be a nice way to personalize our gift to the birthday girl so we added it to the top. My last name is Norman and my sewing creations are my inspirations so my labels say Normanspirations… I know. Horribly cheesy. I can’t help myself sometimes. Other times I don’t even try.
And there you have it! A 15 minute (or technically 30 if you include gathering supplies) DIY Birthday Girl Necklace that is a perfect gift for your child or her frou frou friend. Also, if you are looking to introduce your daughter to some basic sewing skills at a young age here are a few great posts I came across that will help get you guys started.
- Printable sewing sheets to help your child practice basic sewing skills
- Learning to sew buttons on cross-stitch
- Toddler friendly sewing baskets (great idea)
- Create a tapestry table
Do you sew? What do you sew most often?