I inherited a bunch of fabulous brooches, clip earrings and costume jewelry necklaces from family members and wanted to make a statement necklace like all the ones I have seen at JCrew and Anthropologie, but for almost no cost.
Select your pieces
I laid out the items I was willing to use for this project and got my pliers out to remove any earring backs. Being that this is a very trendy necklace I decided not to remove the brooch backings, just in case I wanted to use them as brooches later.
Layout your necklace design
I chose a light brown felt as my backing so it wouldn't be very noticeable against my pale skin. Each piece was placed in a design I felt was pleasing.
Trace your design
I used a felt tip marker and just made a dotted line around my layout.
Cut out your felt backing
Then I cut out the felt backing along my dotted line.
Pin brooches into place
Since I didn't take the brooch parts off and don't want to glue them, I pinned my brooches in place.
Glue other pieces onto backing
Using a hot glue gun I glued the other pieces I had into place.
Since the brooches were big and pretty heavy I sewed them onto the felt in a few places to make the necklace a bit more stable.
I used a preexisting chain I had and used a jump ring to attach the 2 ends to the chain and even ended up sewing the chain onto the back to keep everything in place and in a non-permanent way. I also used some antique buttons to fill in a few empty spots in my design. You could sew or glue them.
My plan is to wear this to a friend's wedding on the beach in April.