Rocking a choker may seem intimidating or not age appropriate, but luckily there are so many different styles and colors to choose from that I think anyone can wear the trend. And you don’t have to spend more than $4-8 to get the look. That is if you enjoy getting creative! Personally, I grew tired of spending $25 and up for chokers that didn’t fit my neck or would fall apart after only wearing them a few times. And I also couldn’t find exactly what I was looking for. So I decided to visit my local bead lounge and fabric store in search of material to make my own custom pieces. Below you’ll find 4 different styles and each one is rather easy to make and can be dressed up or down. Scroll through and find one that fits your style!
DIY Choker 1: Wraparound Suede
I love this style because you can wrap it so many different ways. I created three different chokers, each only slightly different than the next. I think it would look even nicer if you added more beads and mixed metals.
What You’ll Need:
- Two yards of suede cord (or your desired length)
- Beads (2 – 3 beads per necklace or more)
Step 1: Figure out the length by wrapping the cord around your neck until you achieve the look you desire. I purchased two-yard length cords and it just happened to be the perfect length for me.
Step 2: Slide the bead onto the cord. When you’re choosing your beads, make sure the openings are wide enough for the cord.
Step 3: Tie the end in a knot.
Step 4: Repeat the same on the other end.
Step 5 (optional): Apply a small amount of Krazy glue on the knot to ensure that it doesn’t loosen.
With bar beads:
Here you will want to apply a small amount of Krazy glue inside the bar bead. I used the glue with a brush applicator to avoid a huge, sticky mess. Then insert the end of the cord into the bead as far as possible. Use a toothpick to help push it in.
Adding a third bead:
Simply slide the bead and place it in the center of the cord. Then repeat the same steps above.
DIY Choker 2: Leather Cord With Charm
This choker is a great everyday piece because of how simple and delicate it is. I also love to layer it with a thicker choker that sits higher on my neck. You can also add a charm in place of the beads or in the middle of them. All you need is an open jump ring in the same color as your charm. You can recycle charms from old jewelry you don’t wear anymore and create a unique piece.
What You’ll Need:
- Round leather cord (14-18 inches).
- Five beads
- Lobster clasp (medium)
- Open jump ring (6mm)
- Length extender (1 inch) – I used a small chain
Step 1: Cut a piece of leather cord to the length you desire. Being mindful of whether you want the choker to lay in the middle or the base of your neck.
Step 2: Slide beads onto the cord.
Step 3: Tie a knot around the ring attached to the lobster clasp.
Step 4: Open the jump ring and slide in one of the last loops of the extender. Close the jump ring. I used an old tweezer that I don’t use anymore. A better choice would be to use a flat-nose jewelry pliers.
Step 5: Tie the other end of the cord to the jump ring.
DIY Choker 3: Velvet, Lace OR Other Ribbon
Of all the styles, this is probably my favorite because you can change the vibe of your entire outfit based on the choker alone. There are so many different types of lace, crochet-style, and textured ribbons. You can add a large brooch, flower, or charm and really make it a statement piece. As long as you have very basic sewing skills, you got this! Perfection not required.
What you’ll need:
- 12.5 inches of decorative ribbon
- Two 6-inch pieces of ribbon (I used Rah Rah Ribbon from Jo-Ann Fabric 3/8 in x 9 MM)
- Hand sewing needle
Measure your neck, leaving a one-inch opening. Generally, to play it safe, you will need 1 yard of ribbon. Then go to the ribbon section of your favorite fabric store and go ham! Lace, velvet, mesh…here is where you get to be creative and unique. Also, get 12 inches of a sturdy ribbon (Rah Rah ribbon) to use to tie the choker around your neck.
Step 1: Fold over the end of the lace ribbon and with a threaded needle that matches in color, sew each end.
Step 2: Sew a 6-inch piece of the Rah Rah ribbon onto each end.
Step 3 (optional): Apply a little Krazy glue on the end of the Rah Rah ribbon to prevent it from fraying.
DIY Choker 4: Braided Leather
Braids are everywhere, so it just makes sense to wear a braided choker, right? This style is probably the easiest to make and the cheapest (only $4)! Keep in mind that lighter cords will show off the braid more, so remember that when choosing a color.
What you’ll Need:
- Three 1-3 yard pieces of suede cord (I used 1-yard pieces and I can only wrap it twice).
Step 1: Holding the 3 cords together, tie a knot. Leave out 1/2-3/4 in. of the cord so it looks like a tassel.
Step 2: Gently braid the leather cords, avoid making it too tight.
Step 3: Tie the other end in a knot.
Are you inspired to make your own chokers as well? I would love to see if you do! Tag me in your pictures…here’s a link to my Instagram in case you’re not already following me: @sarah_najafi. Also, if you have any recommendations, please send them my way. xo Sarah