Tutorial: Leather Chain Necklace

I must really have a thing for soft, fabric jewelry. First, the t-shirt necklace, now this. I have been admiring these leather necklaces by Handle & Spout for quite some time. Can I use the “imitation is the sincerest form or flattery” line again?
What you need:
Leather piece – approximately 12″ x 12″(if you are in Vancouver, check out Dressew for cheap leather in various sizes. I got a 24″ x 24″ piece for $7)
This template, printed out on heavy cardstock (The image is 300dpi, and when printed will be 3″ wide)
Utility Knife (like an x-acto knife)
Needle & thread (matching your leather)
After you have printed out this template on heavy cardstock, cut it out with your exacto knife. This is my paper template (as you can see, my utility knife is not so exact):
Now on the back side of the leather (the rough side) trace your template in pen, like so:
Cut the shape out of the leather with scissors, making sure to cut just inside the pen marks so you don’t have any lines showing. To cut out the center, fold it and make a little snip with your scissors and then cut (like the one below). I tried to use the utility knife and it looked really rough and found scissors to be more accurate.
Continue cutting out the leather shapes until you have a bunch. I used 36 pieces to make a longish necklace, but it totally depends on how long you want it to be.
Fold one piece in half so the smooth side is on the outside. Then push half of the next piece through the hole as shown:
Now fold the second piece down and continue fitting them together:
Keep going, holding it up to your neck until it gets to be your desired length.
For the closure, you could do something fancy like a snap or a button. My necklace is long and I can just pull it over my head, so I folded the last loop over my first one and stitched it closed:
I feel (and look) pretty awkward about posting a picture of myself here, but so you can see the length of the necklace, and the size of the links, here it is:
Notes: You could also buy a leather jacket from a thrift store and cut it up. If you didn’t want to use leather, a good quality felt might look nice (just not the cheap stuff – I think it would end up looking like a kindergarten project) or you could use two fabrics fused together with double-sided fusible interfacing.
Click the thumbnail below for a full-sized version of the template:

53 responses to “Tutorial: Leather Chain Necklace”

  1. Sylvia

    This is absolutely amazing!! I’t so simple and so smart!

    I do DIY’s too, I would really appreciate if you stepped by my blog


  2. Christina Mendoza

    I love your leather necklace design! Very creative! I love recycled leather crafts. I’ll be pinning on Pinterest. Thanks so much for sharing it!

  3. Kate

    Love the design!

    I would really love it if you visited my costume jewellery website.

Leave a Reply