Introduction: Butterfly Quilt Necklace

Picture of Butterfly Quilt Necklace

Quilted jewelry is not common, so I decided to combine my love of jewelry with my love of sewing, painting, and fibers to make this unusual necklace.

Step 1:

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I started by selecting my image and the paints to use.  A paint tray and paint brushes will also be needed.

Step 2:

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I traced the selected butterfly image onto white cotton fabric.  I was able to see the image through this fabric, but you may need to use a light box, or hold up to a window to see image well enough to trace.  I used a regular pencil, but make the markings light so the paint can cover them.

Step 3:

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These are the paint and perle cotton colors I chose for this butterfly.  The cotton will be used for the necklace cord and for the decorative quilting stitches.

Step 4:

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Starting to paint.

Step 5:

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More paint.

Step 6:

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The image is painted, and I have twisted the perle cotton into a cord and attached a clasp.

Step 7:

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Here I have torn two squares of cotton fabric that will become the back of the quilt.  I used a heavy cotton fabric, but I would advise using a lighter weight cotton for the backing pieces.  I had difficulty quilting through the heavy layers of fabric.

Step 8:

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Decide how long you want the necklace to be and position the cord accordingly, with the waste ends pointing up.  Also make sure you orient the clasp correctly.  When you are putting the necklace on the clasp should be in your dominant hand. 

Step 9:

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Pin the cord into place.

Step 10:

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Pin the cord into place.

Step 11:

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With butterfly painting right side up, fold one of the backing pieces in half and pin in place with folded edge centered over butterfly.  Keep cord free and toward middle.

Step 12:

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Fold other backing piece in half and line folded edge up with other folded edge.  Keep cord ends free and pin in place.

Step 13:

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This is just an image to show you how things are lined up.

Step 14:

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Turn the whole thing over.  You can see the butterfly and where the cords are.  I pinned the waste ends of the cord in place when pinning the backing fabric on.  This will help when sewing the layers together.

Step 15:

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Stitch around the outline of the butterfly, through all layers of fabric.  I used an outline stitch, and made sure I stitched through the cord at each wing tip for security.

Step 16:

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This is how it looks on the backing side.  Notice the cord coming out of the opening.  Make sure you do not catch the cord in any of your stitching.  This is the part of the cord with the clasp.

Step 17:

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When stitching is complete trim the excess fabric around the butterfly to about a 1/4" seam allowance.  Very carefully slash the seam to the stitching.  Do not cut your stitches.  Snip to any inner curves or points and around outer curves.  This is to make it turn right side out properly, and look correct.  Be careful not to cut the cords while doing this step.

Step 18:

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This is a closer look at the seam trimming and clipping.  Be very careful with this step!

Step 19:

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Put a dab of Fray Check on the cord coming from the seam.  This part of the cord will be inside, and you do not want it to unravel and come loose.

Step 20:

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Now cut the cord and turn the piece right side out.  This may be tricky with the small pieces and tight curves and points.  Be careful not to poke through your stitching when doing this.  I had to turn it inside out again a couple times and re-trim and clip areas of the seam to make it look correct when turned right side out.  Be patient and gentle and you can get it done.

Step 21:

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Now that it is turned right side out it is time to do the quilting.  I used the same colors of perle cotton for the quilting that I used in the cord.

Step 22:

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Using the opening on the back, stuff lightly with quilt batting.  For this small piece I used polyester batting.  I actually cut the piece in two and stuffed each side individually.

Step 23:

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This picture shows the quilting stitches on the upper wing section and body.  I also did a line of outline stitch around the whole butterfly, just on the backing to define the edge and keep the white from showing around front.

Step 24:

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This is how the back looks.  Try to keep it neat and use small knots and weave in the thread ends so they do not show.

Step 25:

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This is the finished necklace.  This butterfly is about 3.25" wide by 2.75" high, and the necklace length is about 22".  I hope you like it.  Thank you for looking at my instructable.

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