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Project

Button Necklace

Exquisite jewelry needn't be fashioned from gold or studded with diamonds, rubies, or other precious stones. You can craft beautiful pieces with far more common materials, such as abalone-shell or pink mother-of-pearl buttons.

Materials

  • Abalone-shell or pink mother-of-pearl buttons
  • Beading string, cut to 40 inches
  • Crimp bead
  • Needle-nose pliers

Steps

  1. Step 1

    Fold the string in half, and create an end by tying two slipknots 2 inches down from the fold.

  2. Step 2

    Slip a button on one string. Tie another slipknot 1 inch from the previous knot. Repeat until you have 12 buttons on the string. (Sophie makes five strands for her necklace, but you can make as many or few as you like.) Trim the ends (not the looped end) 2 inches from the last knot.

  3. Step 3

    Gather all the ends together, and crimp in a crimp bead. Attach the necklace closure using a pair of needle-nose pliers.

Source
Martha Stewart Living Television

Reviews (30)

  • 6 Sep, 2012

    I LOVE THIS, ESPECIALLY WITH THE DARK ABALONE ,CAN'T WAIT TO MAKE THIS FOR MYSELF..............

  • 2 Sep, 2012

    This is interesting. I have done something like this before, but I had colorful buttons of all sizes hanging like pendants. I had used woolen thread for the same. I lik eyour idea too, will need to tr it out and see how it looks. Thanks for sharing it. Its innovative and looks great in the picture.

  • 18 Dec, 2010

    I was able to buy bags of 60 round, abalone-shell buttons for $3.50 a piece at JoAnn's Fabric Store. I hope that helps!!

  • 12 Nov, 2010

    Wow, that site will cost $75 just for the one inch buttons. $1.25 EACH and it says we need 60 buttons. Then the gal said more for S

  • 12 Sep, 2010

    I mean this one

  • 12 Sep, 2010

    I think I might try this on as it looks so BEAUTIFUL!

  • 10 Oct, 2009

    This is a beautiful necklace. I watched the show when Martha and Sophie created this necklace and my daughters and I made a few of these. Love it!

  • 10 Jun, 2009

    I love the look of shell buttons as a material for jewelry making. You really can't get this one wrong. Just play around with the fullness.
    www.edithandlulu.etsy.com

  • 2 Feb, 2009

    I'm not clear on these instructions at all, but the concept looked interesting. 40" of string isn't going to end up looking like the picture, is it?

  • 2 Feb, 2009

    I'm not clear on these instructions at all, but the concept looked interesting. 40" of string isn't going to end up looking like the picture, is it?

  • 27 Jan, 2009

    I get the "doing things with a twist" but I really do not think that slip knot is clear and do you tie both strings together with the slip knot move an inch put a button on one string tie knot with both strings?

  • 26 Jan, 2009

    Hi - A great resource for real shell buttons is www.firemountaingems.com. They sell lots of jewelry supplies. They do not have lots of colors of shell buttons, but shell buttons pick up whatever color they are next to. And no animal parts are sold there. Good luck!

  • 25 Jan, 2009

    Yes, I believe somone may have second thoughts before suggestiing Chichesters, Inc. Too many offensive "items" before you get to the pearl buttons! I've seen bags of lovely buttons in the jewelry supply depts. of the familiar stores we all know.

  • 25 Jan, 2009

    I like this, but note ladies, just tie a simple knot , or use crimping beads instead of knots, crafting should be make it your own, doesn't have to be exact, I have done tons of things with a twist and a change here and there with no regrets, just have fun:)

  • 25 Jan, 2009

    instructions not really clear, A slip knot is meant to pull out easily, how would they keep the buttons apart?

  • 25 Jan, 2009

    so you put buttons on both strands and make as many pairs of strands as you want? What do you mean slip knot?

  • 25 Jan, 2009

    adorable! pretty pearlescent buttons!

  • 25 Jan, 2009

    adorable! pretty pearlescent buttons!

  • 25 Jan, 2009

    adorable! pretty pearlescent buttons!

  • 25 Jan, 2009

    I think this is an awesome idea.I have jars of buttons all over the house I have keep for years and when my grandkids come visit next time that will be our next projects...for the girls anyway...lol!!!

  • 25 Jan, 2009

    I needed something form my older girls in the preschool. 'l use the idea and do something similar. Interesting to find the comments here about the website. I didn't even consider going there (because of the cost) but now I won't for sure!

  • 25 Jan, 2009

    The buttons alone, without shipping, would cost $50. It must be nice to work with endless funds, but it's not appropriate for our current economy. I've made wonderful necklaces from antique buttons found in button boxes at yard sales and auctions - for a few dollars for enough buttons to make a variety of necklaces.

  • 25 Jan, 2009

    This is a very disturbing website but if you potz around on it for awhile, your opinions might moderate. The animal skins I looked at said "by product of food industry." We might forget that in the world, people actually eat reindeeer, rabbits, goats, all sort of things we don't eat here. But still, if you need buttons, your local craft store is a far better choice!

  • 25 Jan, 2009

    One time, I saw a woman with a stunning multicolored button necklace. She had made it herself.

  • 25 Jan, 2009

    Unfortunately there are many such outlets around the world. It's by persistent protest that they will be reduced in numbers. Meanwhile, Crafting should be something we can do to calm and sooth the spirit; more a reflection of one's creative heart. *Without trama involved!" Though I LOVE the necklace, and will rummage through my own button collection, How about Ms. Stewart's company spending MORE time offering a variety of suggestions for resources?

  • 25 Jan, 2009

    Wow. That website is both expensive and disturbing. I hunt and eat meat, but that website is inappropriate and offensive even to me. These same buttons are available in bags for considerably less money at Joanne Fabrics, Michals's, AC Moore, or even Walmart. They are equally as nice and will do the trick without the added gag factor. :-) Happy crafting!!

  • 25 Jan, 2009

    I couldn't agree more with pattycakey--that website was quite alarming. All manner of very nice buttons, including shell buttons, can be found at sewing/craft shops like JoAnn's. To the administrators: please do remove and replace that gruesome and inappropriate link ASAP!

  • 25 Jan, 2009

    You might want to check out the Chichester website before you recommend that as a place to buy materials.....it has real animal parts for sale...I would not consider buying anything from a company like that. Anyone have a source for buttons that does not depend on dead animals for products?

  • 25 Jan, 2009

    What a neat idea! I needed a way to use my button collection. :)

  • 23 Jun, 2008

    Also video clip - Button necklace