October 24, 2017

Dia de los Muertos Mixed Media Art Necklace

After finishing my fiber-inspired Boho Tribal Collar Necklace I knew I wanted to try my hand at more thread-wrapped jewelry. I had been mulling over an idea for awhile that paired a wire-wrapped focal element surrounded by some sort of dimensional flowers. So, I decided to try my hand at some thread-and-rope flower components to pair with the wire focal element and go for a bold, artsy, mixed media creation full of big and bright color. And with Dia de los Muertos quickly arriving, I knew just the theme to choose.

I didn't know much about the holiday until I spent three years living in New Mexico, and I can't honestly say I know a lot more now. I am more familiar with the iconography now though and I love the colors and the artistic elements that abound with the holiday, so I used them as my inspiration.

I decided that a "sugar skull" (or calavera) would be my primary focal element, so I created a colorful wire component from a free-form sketch (no wire jig with this piece), then embellished it with some beautiful beads in shades of turquoise, pink, and purple and accented with silver.

The skull features howlite, agate, quartzite, tourmaline, lepidolite, crystal, and silver plated beads and the frame is created from and wrapped with German style copper wire.

Once I had the skull finished I created several fiber flowers using various sizes of cotton and cotton/polyester rope, wire, and brightly colored embroidery floss.

Around the back of the necklace I used a single strand of wire-wrapped faceted glass beads and silver plated beads on either side, and closed the necklace with a handmade wire-wrapped toggle clasp embellished with crystal, nebula glass and silver luster glass beads and created from silver tone German style wire.


To add the finishing touch I added some silver luster glass dangles to each flower and to the sugar skull, and then connected all of the elements together into one giant necklace.

I love how colorful and vibrant this necklace is! And these flowers were definitely a work of love, folks. So many layers and pieces and delicate details to each one.

 And just for scale (this necklace is huge), here's the necklace on:

Yep, it's big. And bold. And bright. And definitely artsy. I'm not sure what I'm going to do with it--it's too 'theme'-y to be worn regularly, and I'm not really a Big Artsy Jewelry wearer. But it was a fun experiment and it definitely pushed the boundaries of my creative inventiveness.

Do you wear holiday-themed jewelry? Would you wear something this big and bold? Have you created mixed media and/or fiber jewelry? I'd love to know.


Possibly linking up with:

Fabulous Party at Lou Lou Girls
Show and Tell Link Party at Flamingo Toes
Your Whims Wednesday at My Girlish Whims
Link Party Palooza at Tatertots and Jello


  1. Because I make wrapped cord jewelry, I understand the effort behind this piece and truly appreciate you. Bravo!I feel the contrast between the soft flowers and the masculine skull makes it very interesting. Personally I would wear the flowers individually or 2 together at a time and the skull separately as its too big for me

    1. Many thanks, Divya! It's a bit too big for me as well lol...but it was fun to create such an artistic (rather than wearable) piece!


Got a question or comment? My ear is yours.