Accessories · Fabric · Hand stitching · Moving House · Recycled · TGSMD

Braids, pearls and lace

I am entering my 3rd year of living in the same place, as such I am realising that another move, possibly interstate again, may be inevitable within the next year or two. So today I am holding my first 2nd hand market stall, at a regular market held at a nearby church. I have been there a few times as a customer, and it has never failed to supply me with something amazing at a surprisingly good price. Most of the items I am taking I would usually just give to the op shop, but there are some other items that I couldn’t just give away. Instead I will attempt to sell all of them, then give the rest to charity.

This looming relocation has also led my artyness to become more thrifty as I am trying to cut down on luggage. Combining or redesigning clothes and accessories that I rarely wear, but still just can’t bear to get rid of.

As many artistically minded people are familiar with, I find it hard to just throw out things. So I find myself with a small army of broken necklaces, single earrings, and small bags of beads and sequins. But I was very thankful for this when I found the need to make some accessories for an upcoming formal occasion.

Firstly I bought some shoes that I liked, but that could do with an overhaul.

I adore pearls, probably my favourite part of Breakfast at Tiffany’s is Audrey’s chunky pearl necklace. I would wear multiple strings of all kinds of shaped, sized and coloured pearls all the time if I could.


Though they aren’t real pearls, I decided to spruce my shoes up with one of the aforementioned broken necklaces.

Evolution of shoes

Go from left to right to see their initial decoration, through the planning stage, to what I replaced it with. I went with the top design in the final photo.

And though there is also a single strand of pearls that go all around the shoe, I found myself with a lot of pearls left over. So what was I to do? Make a matching bracelet.

Pearl braid bracelet

Using a four-way plait that I learnt years ago from a friendship bracelet book, I intertwined all kinds of things found in my sewing box together. Starting with just the pearls and a couple of strands of rope that you find tied around Frangelico bottles (I’ve always loved these and have been collecting them for years now). Next I added some gold braid, a mix of antique looking chains (using the clasp as the clasp for this bracelet) and finally some off-white lace to give it more bulk, and to wrap around the ends to keep it neat.

How great is that? I’m so happy with my result, and I think there will be more similar bracelets in my future. Such a great way to use up oddments that are too pretty to throw away.

And that’s about it for now. If I find more need for procrastination in the next few weeks I might show you a little of what I did with my summer. Lucky you!

Petersham: Strip of strong ribbon or elastic, first used around 1870, that sits around the waist to hold the dress in place while being worn or laced up.


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