I first got a glimpse of Gucci’s LOVED collection in a magazine last year (I feel like it was the summer of 2016)… I remember ripping out the page which featured a floral embroidered quilted handbag with the word LOVED embroidered to the front flap, embellished with rainbow crystals and I immediately thought THAT WOULD BE A RAD CHOKER!
And then I’ve thought about making it on and off since then… for like a year.
But now that it’s Valentine’s Day and I’m DIYnspired again lately (YAY) now is actually the perfect time.
Life has a way of working out exactly the way it’s supposed to…
Anyway. Last Friday night, I finally made it, and I love it. Or shall I say, I LOVED it!
I would have LOVED to use rainbow crystals like the Gucci one but I used the closest option I had, which were iridescent stones, and have a pretty pastel-color-disco-party feel when the light hits them…
And in the end, I’ll probably wear this color scheme a lot more than I’d wear the rainbow one, but it’s so pretty, don’t you think…
I thought leather would be the easiest option for this, but I have random scraps of leather and have worked with leather a lot in my life, so while it’s easy for me (and I love the look of it) you may come up with an easier option for you.
For instance, if you can find L-O-V-E-D letter patches in black or gold, you could hand stitch the letters together and use a ribbon on the ends for a closure to tie in the back and then bedazzle the letters… that would work too and look super cute.
But for now, this is how I made mine.
Here’s What You’ll Need…
* Leather (medium thick – thin enough to use scissors to cut with) and soft since it’s sitting around your neck. NOTE: if the leather is too soft, it won’t stand up correctly so you’ll have to back it with something, meaning you can glue felt to the back of it or something that will stiffen it up.
* LOVED template (I used that image above and just printed it out at 100%) worked perfectly. I’m hoping if you pull it from here, it will work the same for you. Otherwise, go to Gucci and download a the original image like I did, then size it down until you get the size you want.
* Flat back crystals or gemstones in any color you choose!
* Large clear hair elastic (optional)
* E6000 Adhesive
* Velcro – or your choice of closure
* Print out your template and carefully cut it out… leave the edge of the L and the D open – this will go around your neck.
* Trace it onto your leather.
NOTE: I used pencil and traced right to the front knowing the pencil would slightly disappear and not be an issue. If you need to use a colored pencil, marker, etc. flip your leather over and trace it on the back BUT MAKE SURE to flip your template as well or else your choker will say DEVOL 🙂
* Using a ruler, draw straight lines out from the L and the D and cut along them.
* Carefully cut your pattern out of your leather using a combination of a blade and scissors.
* Hold it up to your neck and cut the ends where they meet OR OVERLAP in the back.
* IF you’re using velcro as a closure like I did, you need one layer to overlap the other by almost an inch.
* Cut away the excess.
* Stick your velcro to one side of the leather firmly. Peel the sticky back off the top – THEN – hold it up and around your neck and set it in place while it’s around your neck so you get the perfect fit. You can pull it on and off a few times to get the placement right if you need to -THEN- cut a new piece and firmly stick it into position.
Will Look Something Like This…
* NOTE: My OVE section didn’t lay on my neck correctly and flapped over a bit and I didn’t like it.
* TO REMEDY IT, I grabbed a large, clear hair elastic and cut it in half, then applied E6000 glue in 3 spots on the back and set it in place. It’s nearly invisible and will stretch slightly if needed. It works like a charm!
* I had to let mine dry for a while before finishing.
Time to Bedazzle, Baby!
* Last but not least, flip it over to the front side and BEDAZZLE BABY!
* My stones have sticky backs, but you know they never last, so after setting them all in place, I glued them securely with E6000 (because it’s the best) and let it dry over night.
* Randy wanted to help…
* NOTE – you don’t HAVE to add the crystals at all, in fact it looks pretty cool just as black leather BUT because the middle letters run into each other AND the L and D also turn into the rest of the choker, the letters aren’t formed entirely the crystals help to really define the word better.
* YOU don’t have to use crystals though, you can use whatever you like… like STUDS 🙂
My inspiration was Gucci, so I went with the crystals.