Every woman has been there … you are rushing to leave the house, last thing is to throw on a quick necklace to finish the look, only to discover that the one necklace that suits this outfit has become entangled in every other decent chain you own. The only detangled choices are some plastic thing you got free with a magazine that the other necklaces don’t want to be seen dead next to, or a nineties number that really should not see the light of day again. In panic I inevitably shove the whole tangled mess into my handbag so I can pull them apart on the bus, but this leaves me with one, probably bent, chain that I want to wear and fifty extra swirling around the bottom of my bag, causing unnecessary weight and coiling like a boa constrictor around my purse and phone.
After one particularly irritating incident where the bus journey was not long enough to detangle the one chain I wanted, I swore I could come up with a better storage solution that shoving all my costume jewellery into a box under my bed. And I did. I invested in two simple jewellery holders from Pennies. They were two sided, had little pockets and could be hung up. Alas, as Roy Walker would say ‘it was a good answer.. but it’s not right’.
They were too small to fit all my jewellery in one pocket each, so I ended up putting two or three pieces in together, which inevitably tangled up together defeating the point of the change, or one big piece hid a small piece and I forgot I owned it. Also, being two-sided meant that I never looked at the pieces on the reverse side, and ending up wearing the same pieces time and time again.
So, I decided I need a customised solution… a jewellery organiser that would hang on the back of my closet door and display all my jewellery at once, without allowing it to become entangled … queue the DIY music (vaguely similar to the MacGyver theme tune played on homemade bag pipes – music that inspires you to finish whatever you are doing fast so that the horrible sound will stop).
You will need;
- Sewing Machine, thread, needles, scissors
- Cloth – light but durable. I chose cotton.
- Cloth – smaller piece to reinforce top of organiser. I chose canvas because it is strong and I had some already left over from another project, but you could chose anything that can withstand weight.
- Buttons – large for preference
- Hammer and Nails (for the strong) or Staple Gun (for the clever and lazy)
- First things first, get out the sewing machine, blow the dust off it and check it still works.
- Select a fabric. I have a box where I store random pieces of fabric that I use for this type of situation. You will need something light but durable – I choose an old sheet that I had chopped other pieces from.
- Measure the door that you are going to hang the final piece on (and, I say from experience, don’t cheat and just measure the door closest to you at the moment – not all doors were created equal). Add 5cm around the boarder to allow for hemming.
- Cut fabric to size. I doubled the measurements and folder my fabric over to make it twice as thick. This is only necessary if you have a lightweight fabric.
- Hem 2cm around edges.
- Take stronger fabric and sew it to top of organiser – this will prevent the lighter fabric from tearing under the weight of jewellery.
- Take ribbon and lay them out across organiser to choose positions. I placed my ribbon with a 1cm gap at the top and graduated this to a 3cm gap at the bottom to allow for different sized jewellery. I also took the opportunity to recycle pieces of ribbon that we used in the menus for our wedding. Waste not, want not.
- Pin ribbon in place.
- Now, starting at the top of your sheet, sew across the ribbons from top to bottom at even intervals (depending on the size of your organiser). This will give strength to the ribbon and stop it from sagging in the centre when you add the jewellery.
- Sew some buttons if you like so you can hang rather than hook some pieces.
- Measure against door to double check size still correct. Hem boarder to give finished appearance.
- Nail or staple to door, ensuring that the top and sides are very secure.
- Hang jewellery and voila, the ability to get dressed and accessorise without earning your Scouts Knots badge.