"I am always doing what I cannot do yet in order to learn how to do it." Vincent
Van Gogh

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Fabric Butterfly Necklace Tutorial

For the sake of nothing in particular I decided to make a little tutorial on how to make the lovely butterfly necklace I made before.  This one I am putting for sale in my Etsy Shop, but you all I can see how I made it here, and if you are crafty you can make one too. ;)


Butterfly fabric of choice (I used a Michael Miller fabric) and backing fabric (can be the same or coordinating color)
Fusible webbing (or iron applique stuff you can find at Wal-Mart or your local craft store).
Quilt batting (cotton or polyester).
20 gauge wire or smaller.
regular scissors
fabric scissors
printer paper
iron and ironing board
small round eyelets (finishing washers are optional)
eyelet tool or setter
Large jump rings (gold or silver plated whichever you prefer)
round nose jewelry pliers (I use an all in one type of pliers)
cutting pliers
optional: Chain, clasp, silk thread, wire protector loops, crimp beads, swarovski bead

Okay, let's get started:
Cut out the butterflies from your fabric (or butterfly if doing one) and an equal portion of backing fabric to cover the backs of all your butterfly/butterflies.  Lay them down with their backs on the fusible webbing making sure not to overlap, and put on ironing board. 
Place a couple of pieces of printer paper over the fabric and webbing to protect your iron.

Iron your fabric pieces to the fusible webbing as directed by packaging instructions.

Remove paper; This is after they have been ironed and are attached to the fusible webbing

Cut out each of your butterflies using regular, sharp paper scissors (don't use your fabric scissors here because the fusible webbing has a paper backing).

Trace your butterfly on your backing paper and cut out: Hint: I trace the top part just as the butterfly is, right against, but I add room at the bottom by tracing away from the butterfly by less then a half inch.

This kind of shows you what I mean by having the top aligned, but the bottom is out a little.

Cut out a little batting to fill the center of the wings.  Make sure there is room on the edges and center.  Only fill center of wings.  This is optional on the smaller butterflies.

Peel paper off back of butterfly and backing fabric and place batting in place.

Cut out a length of wire that you desire, fold in half and twist bottom.  Place on butterfly where the antenna will come out and figure out what length you like.

Place your butterfly face down on a piece of paper on the ironing board, place the batting where you want it, place the antenna at the top and then place the backing face up on the main butterfly.  Align the top of the butterfly and then make sure the rest of the butterfly is covered.  Iron as directed until the top and bottom are stuck to each other.

This is what it should look like when you are done ironing.  The top part is perfectly aligned while the bottom has excess.  This is done on purpose since it is better to have a little extra then be short.  With your fabric scissors, cut off the excess backing that you see.

Using your round nose pliers, or multi-pliers, curl the antenna of the butterfly.

Like so!

Pick two eyelets that go with the colors of your butterfly, or that just look good with it, and your eyelet tool.  I have a handy dandy little eyelet tool, but any eyelet tool that you need a hammer with is probably just fine.

Place the eyelets where you would like your chain, rope, or whatever, to be attached to the butterfly and using your tool, snap or hammer in place. 

Using the big jump rings, attach a chain or whatever you want to the butterfly.  For my butterfly I used a brown silk thread ( a strong one, but very strong is not necessary cause the butterfly is so light).  I cut two equal pieces of thread and used wire protector loops on both ends and secured with crimp beads.  The other ends have the same thing but they have my lobster clasp as well.

This is your final project.  Yay.  I ended up adding a small swarovski crystal to one of the jump rings in emerald just for some more bling.  Other options are using some super glue at the antenna for more support, and using mod podge with a little water to create a stiffer butterfly and add some gloss. 
I hope that my tutorial was clear and that you get some wonderful pieces out of it.
You can find this butterfly for Sale Here.


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