DIY DIY fashion DIY Jewelry DIY necklace DIY statement necklace rock necklace travel

DIY Virgin Islands Rock Necklace

May 28, 2014
These days, if you go on vacation or a hike with me, there are always backpacks or suitcases that end up a bit heavier from the rock stowaways that make their way back to the NYC apartment.

Recently went on medical school spring break with Sean and some of his classmates to St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands. I haven’t been to the beach in ages so it was really refreshing to explore the most tropical place I’ve ever visited. And oh. My. Gosh. The ROCKS there. I looked especially ridiculous collecting them in St. Thomas because every morning before a run I’d pack a little sandwich bag and pick stuff up on my morning run beach pit stop.

DIY St Thomas Rock Necklace

There’s something insanely complete-feeling as a rock hoarder to find souvenir rocks that match the landscape of the place you’ve visited. Before visiting St. Thomas, I’d never been to a place with water so many shades of blue. And I’d never seen rocks freckled with turquoise and navy.
DIY Virgin Islands Rock Necklace
DIY Virgin Islands Rock Necklace
DIY Virgin Islands Rock Necklace
I’d been to Puerto Rico before but St. Thomas was a lot different. The vivid colors, the patterns on the shells- it was so impressive and I really wanted to find a way to bring these things into a necklace.
DIY Virgin Islands Rock Necklace

To make a Rock Necklace You need:
-Leather for the necklace base + backing (Got mine on Ebay)
-Rocks (The flatter the better.)
E6000 superglue
-Beads to complement the necklace (I got mine in the trimmings shop in midtown Manhattan)
-Glue gun
-Fabric for necklace straps
-Beading needles

First, I gathered all the rocks and laid them out in the pattern I wanted. Then I traced the rocks on the paper so that I could transfer the pattern to the leather later.
DIY Virgin Islands Rock Necklace

Next, I glued the rocks to the leather and stitched thread over the top to secure them. (Or at least give the illusion they’re secured by thread instead of superglue.) Next, I filled in all of the front gaps with different sizes of seed beads.
DIY Virgin Islands Rock Necklace

After I had all the spaces filled in and the necklace ties stitched in place, I flipped the necklace over to glue on the leather backing. Since my leather collection is in a bunch of small pieces, the back of my necklace is a bit patchwork-y. I like using the small pieces because it makes my leather collection last a bit longer.
DIY Virgin Islands Rock Necklace

Once I had the back glued to hide all the stitches, I hid the seam of the two leather sides by stitching tiny seed beads to the outside of the necklace. (Definitely need the beading needle for this. I also always use a pair of pliers to pull the needle through so that it doesn’t get all bent up.)
DIY Virgin Islands Rock Necklace

I also stitched a line of seed beads to cover the patchwork parts of the leather.
DIY St Thomas Rock Necklace

DIY St Thomas Rock Necklace

DIY St Thomas Rock Necklace
Some summer boots I found at Beacon’s Closet in Brooklyn.

DIY St Thomas Rock Necklace

DIY St Thomas Rock Necklace

I do have a lot of necklaces made from souvenir rocks these days, but this one might be my new favorite. It’s so fun making a piece that reminds you of special places, trips, and memories.

DIY Virgin Islands Rock Necklace

See more DIY statement necklaces here.

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  • Maggie Thistleton May 29, 2014 at 4:51 pm

    dat big hair tho. <3 <3 <3

  • StacieStacieStacie May 29, 2014 at 6:13 pm

    Bahahha 😀

  • Maria May 29, 2014 at 6:39 pm

    Those photos!!! Ahh. Love it. We just got back from Colorado and picked up several rocks out there that we want to do some fun things with. Love these posts!

  • StacieStacieStacie May 29, 2014 at 6:58 pm

    Ahh Maria you should make a necklace!! I am almost done writing a post about how to make these pendants with a soldering iron… Seems like it would be right up your alley. <3

    Miss you lady!! Wore my MTA bracelet the other day. ;D

  • Liz Marsden June 8, 2014 at 10:00 pm

    Stacie, your hair is looking gorgeous! I love it longer (loved it short too though:)). Gorgeous necklace, really pretty stones, love the mottling on them

  • StacieStacieStacie June 9, 2014 at 12:27 pm

    Ah Liz!! Thank you SO much!!!

  • Heather - dollarstorecrafts August 18, 2014 at 6:11 am

    Such a cool idea, Stacie!!

  • StacieStacieStacie August 18, 2014 at 2:09 pm

    Thank you so much, Heather!! Congrats on your new book, btw! 😀