“A throne is only a bench covered in velvet”
Napolean Bonaparte

we all love pretty things, but pretty things don’t need to cost the earth……..and velvet is such a luxurious, sumptuous fabric that even a small piece adds a hint of luxury! I love the vibrant jewel-like colours as well as the faded ones I dyed to use here.

all my adult life, and maybe even in childhood,  I have upcycled and the old adage “necessity is the mother of invention” was, I think, written for me

I was inspired to make them when I was given a sample of Chloe, a new perfume by Dior and also when I saw beautiful bookmarks online. Once I started making them I remembered making chokers many years ago, which were made in the same way. I think Dior has chosen a really nice way to market their perfume, they have used narrow pink satin  ribbon – it is something that can be kept in a drawer to add fragrance or could even be tied around your wrist as a bangle.

All of these things are quick & easy to make and are a great way to use up baubles, odd earrings, rhinestone buckles, buttons, charms, crystal beads and any other odds and ends you have lying about or beg, steal or borrow!

To make one bookmark you will need:
1 x 12″ long piece of velvet  (or organza) ribbon –  I used 20mm wide
2 x Ribbon clamps – the same width as the ribbon
2 x jump rings
2 x pairs of flat nose jewellery pliers
Slide the ribbon in to the clamp and press with crimp or flat pliers – if the ribbon is wider than the clamp you can fold it (see the Dior one above), but I think it looks nicer unfolded

add the adornment to the clamp with a jump ring

to open jump rings:
 use 2 pairs of jewellery pliers,
grip either side of the ring with the pliers, with the split in the centre 
move one hand away from you and the other towards you, until the opening is just large enough to slip the ribbon clamp and adornment on
to close jump rings:
repeat as above but
move one hand away from you and the other towards you, until the ends just pass each other
 move back until the ends just meet (you will feel them rubbing against each other). Make sure the ring is tightly closed
you can find videos on Youtube for opening and closing jump rings if you prefer to see how it is done – one of these days I will get round to uploading some videos

To make a choker you need all of the above plus chain and a fastener.

add clamps to ribbon as above
 add a chain at both ends with a fastener (I used a lobster clasp)
add jump ring at the other end
add an extender
 hang on a charm or earring with a jump ring
 slide on a rhinestone buckle (before adding the second clamp)
 sew on something glitzy like I did (this is from a broken bracelet).

these make beautiful, unusual gifts – that is if you can bear to part with them!

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