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DIY Necklace: Simple Way to Repurpose a Ring

For today’s post, I decided to tackle a project I’ve been putting off for several years: a simple DIY necklace, repurposing a ring that doesn’t fit.

It’s difficult to buy jewelry for others, and especially to buy rings when the recipient isn’t present. Several years ago I encountered this problem when I bought a jade ring at an antique market in China as a gift for my partner. Predictably, when the ring was presented, I discovered that it was not quite the right size. In the end, I decided to make the ring into a pendant on a simple DIY necklace, so that he can still wear it if he wishes.

For the cord, I used thick, shiny thread intended for buttons and carpet (a hand-me-down from my grandmother). The label on the wooden bobbin reads “Aunt Lydia’s Button & Carpet, Strong – Smooth.”

DIY Necklace Simple

Braiding a Cord

Thinking that the thread alone would be too thin, I first made a 3-strand braid. Step one was to measure out about 4 times my intended end length for the necklace, to allow a bit of excess for knots and overlap.

The best method I’ve found to keep an even tension while braiding a long strand is to anchor the end with a loop around my toes. So I slipped a hairpin through the knot at the end to give my foot something to hold onto, and braided away!

Next was adding the ring as a pendant. I wanted to knot the ring into the center so it wouldn’t slide around, and it took a little bit of research to find the right knot for the job. My first attempt was a lanyard knot, but the bumpy texture of the braided thread didn’t do the knot justice. A round, smooth cord would work better than the flat, almost tape-like shape of the braid.

I also considered an alpine butterfly knot, but finally decided that was more simplistic than I wanted, and settled on a figure eight.

Figure 8 Knot

Now, to complete the circle.

Sliding Knot

To make the necklace adjustable, I tied two sliding knots, like in this tutorial.

Quick test-drive

Necklace finished!