April 29, 2015

Jewelry Upcycle: Walmart Clearance Necklace to Forever 21 Raga Necklace Knockoff

Sometimes when I'm looking for new jewelry-making inspiration I like to browse stores online to look at current jewelry trends, styles, and color pairings. Of course I can't exactly replicate every commercial jewelry technique that catches my eye, but I do find lots of ideas to get my creative brain rolling.

One of the stores I sometimes turn to for jewelry inspiration is Forever 21. Online only, of course, because unfortunately, I  live in the middle of nowhere. No, seriously. My town has a population of maybe 18,000 people. I'm an hour's drive (each way) from the nearest Target, and two hours' drive (each way) to the 'big city' where there's a mall with an actual Forever 21 store. So online viewing is my method of choice. (Which is maybe a good thing, because if I actually walked into a Forever 21 and browsed through their jewelry section I'd probably end up buying. all. the. things.)

Forever 21's Raga Faux Turquoise Statement Necklace

A few weeks ago I was browsing F21 online and came across their Raga Faux Turquoise Statement Necklace. And totally fell in LOVE. But at $68, it was waaaayyyy more than I'd ever spend on a necklace, besides being a lot pricier than what I normally expect from Forever 21 (and I'm not sure why; the stones are not real turquoise and the metal isn't precious...). But anyway, like my World Market Knockoff Necklace I shared last week, I knew I could make a similar version for a lot less moolah using some items I already had in my bead stash.

Seriously, Walmart clearance jewelry is awesome for upcycling. Check it out.
A couple of months back I picked up two of these silver tone necklaces with various sizes of dangling discs from Walmart, on clearance for $3 each. I knew I could use the silver discs in some future jewelry project, and at $3 a pop they were too good a deal to pass up. Along with one of the Walmart necklaces I gathered a few other supplies--some turquoise-colored magnesite beads, 4mm jump rings, and ball head pins, all of which were already in my bead stash. From there it was an easy (and really quick!) project.

I only needed one of the Walmart necklaces to create my F21-inspired necklace. I just detached the outer strand from the store-bought necklace so I could use it to create the scalloped tiers, then played around a little to figure out how I wanted the three tiers to drape and where they should be reattached. Once I was happy with the look, I used 4mm jump rings to reattach the longer chain back to the shorter chain, creating the draped tiers at the same time.

Next I threaded each magnesite bead onto a ball head pin and made a wrapped-loop dangle. I used more 4mm jump rings to attach each dangle to the necklace in a balanced, symmetrical layout. Tip: I used jump rings to attach each dangle rather than wrapping the headpin loops directly onto the chain itself so that I wasn't 'stuck' with the placement...which was good, as I ended up moving the bead dangles around several times before I was happy with the layout. Much easier than wasting a bunch of headpins each time I wanted to change their placement!

I kept the existing lobster clasp and extender chain, and since I had one leftover magnesite bead dangle I attached it to the extender chain for a bit of pretty detail.

Once I had all the bead dangles in place I then took some of the silver discs from higher up the neckline of the top chain and used them to fill in various gaps down in the tiers where there were blank spaces. It took a little shuffling to get the placement of the discs balanced to my overly-perfectionistic liking, but I LOVE how it turned out!

This was such an incredibly easy project, and it turned out even better than I'd first envisioned. And I'm loving the fun boho style for summer--and for only $3! I think it evokes such a great, sunny and carefree vibe. I can't wait to pair this with a fun summer dress and some wedge sandals and give it a spin next Sunday at church!

Have you ever upcycled unloved jewelry into something new? Are you digging the boho-inspired styles this summer? I'd love to know.


Linking with:

Frugal Friday at The Shabby Nest
Friday Finds at Minted Strawberry
Link Party Palooza at I Heart Naptime
Motivational Monday at Curly Crafty Mom
Show and Tell Link Party at Flamingo Toes
Your Whims Wednesday at My Girlish Whims 


  1. i have some coins like this! love the idea. I might copy :) :)

    1. Please do! I'd love to see your version!


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