Sunday, October 9, 2011

Easy DIY Black Cat Necklace

I think I'm going to need to start a new label just for projects that involve scraps from those leather pants. But this is the project with the best time-involved-to-awesomeness ratio by far. Or at least, it's awesome if you like cats. Or Halloween, I guess, since black cats are pretty much synonymous with Halloween. Here's what you would need to make the same necklace:
  • scrap of black leather/pleather (at least 2" x 2" square)
  • 2 brass/gold eyelets
  • seam ripper
  • eyelet setting tool (or a hammer!)
  • 4 brass/gold jump rings
  • jewelry pliers
  • brass/gold chain
  • something to cut the chain with
  • brass/gold necklace clasp of some kind 
I ended up using 4mm jump rings since they're smaller and easier to use, but the ones pictured here are 6mm.

I used wire cutters from my classroom to cut the chain. I also find lobster claw clasps extremely finicky, so I used this twisty one instead.

1. Cut the scrap of leather into a cat face. If you're haphazard in your crafting (or have an excess of leather scraps), like me, you can just start cutting and hope it turns out well. Alternately, you could use a chalk pen to sketch an outline first.

2. Experiment with the eyelets to figure out where on the cat face you want your eyes. I do think it's cuter when the eyes are farther apart, but I was worried about getting to close to the edge. But I think it probably would've been fine.

3. Use the point of your seam ripper to poke holes where you want your eyes to be. Carefully enlarge the hole just enough to poke the eyelets through.

4. Push your eyelet through the hole (make sure the correct side is facing out!), then use your eyelet setter to squish the edges down. Alternately, if you don't have an eyelet setter, you can just hammer the eyelet and it will still work. Do this for the other eye too!
What the whole set up looks like on the eyelet setter before.

SQUISH! This is such a satisfying feeling.

After squishing. Look at those little curled edges!

Both eyes in!

5. Use the seam ripper again to poke a very tiny hole in each ear. Use the jewelry pliers to open up the jump ring and then poke it through the hole. Now it's a pirate cat, with gold earrings!
It looks too shocked to really be an effective pirate though.

6. Hold your cat up to your chest/neck area to figure out where you want it to hang, then cut your gold chain accordingly. Remember that you'll need two lengths of chain, one to hang off of each ear. Attach the chains to the jump rings, then carefully close them back up.
Twist the ring to open it up instead of pulling it apart. If you pull it, it will break a lot more easily.

7. Use the other two jump rings to attach the clasp on the non-cat ends of the chain.

8. Try it on to see how it looks!

Even better paired with black and gold cat earrings!
It's hard to be all spooky-black-cats when it's a beautiful day outside.
Since Joann's was having a 40% off sale on Blue Moon jewelry design stuff, I got my gold chain for $2.39 (but I only used a fifth of it!), a bag of several clasps for $0.77, and a bag of jump rings for $0.77. I already had the eyelets and leather and tools, which means that this necklace, when pro-rated, cost less than a dollar!


  1. Oh this is the cutest thing ever! I absolutely adore it. Ah those pants have come in such handy!

  2. I saw this via the Craft Magazine website. Super cute! I'm always looking for black cat projects, since I have a black cat of my own. :) Thanks for the great tutorial.

  3. Love love love this, so simple, so cute. I'm hosting a week of Leather tutorials from across the web and would love to feature this great tute. Hopefully I'll be able to point out some otherways to use the rest of those Trouser scraps up!

  4. Like Melissa... I found you through CRAFT, and also have a black cat of my own! This is a lovely little project!

  5. The cutest necklace ever !



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