[The DIY Files] the primary Piet collar necklace

Like many of the 20-something American women out there, I have a disease called ‘I Can Make That’-tis. Even though my skill sets may be nowhere in the same ballpark as what’s needed to make something I can more-easily buy… I would much rather make it. It REALLY becomes a problem when I see a high-end item, or a runway trend, and the wheels begin turning in my head. That’s where The DIY Files come to the rescue.

Hot Glue crisis… AVERTED!


With Spring teasing us for the past few days, and Winter attempting to further overstay its welcome, this collar necklace works year-round so that you don’t need to go looking for something modern with a twist. Incorporating both the geometric elements of graphic prints + the primary color scheme of a classic Mondrian painting — all done with materials around the house! — you’ll have a statement piece of your own.


  • plain and clean (no rhinestones or decor) components in geometric shapes — if they’re half or more of the necklace, it’ll be more collar rather than bib-styled.
  • if the components are NOT completely black or white (a single color per surface), then some Krylon spray paint in the colors necessary to even out the surface.
  • painter’s tape or Scotch tape
  • scissors
  • surface to work on — make sure it’s a surface you wouldn’t mind getting nail polish on!
  • oh yeah… and the ‘enamel’… er, nail enamel! You want the colors to be bold and striking against the plain surface of the necklace components. Here I’m using a bright flat red from Ulta (Red Carpet Red), a slightly translucent yellow (China Glaze’s Sunshine Pop), and a sky blue (Sinful Colors’ Aquamarine).
  • If your components are black, I highly recommend also using an opaque white polish (Pure Ice has a thicker formula, perfect for this surface).
  • nail polish top coat or clear spray paint to seal the polish.
  • a jump ring + clasp component
  • chain in a matching hue; here, I have black components so I chose a black/silver chain to remain within the theme.
  • pliers

collage materials


…and on to the making!



1. On the disposable flat surface, separate the linked components individually, spraying them a single flat color if necessary. Allow these components to dry for several hours.


links and pieces

2. Taking the pieces of the components, arrange them as you’d like. Experiment. Rearrange. But remember, the links will limit the arrangement of the pieces, and movement of the individual components is necessary as well.

collage arrangment

3. With the scissors, cut pieces of the painter’s tape or Scotch tape into sections large enough to cover the parts you want on each component. Here, I have approximately two-inch sections because I wanted to cover 1/3 of each triangle so I folded the tape and tightly kept the edges straight.



4. Paint a single coat of the white nail polish on the surfaces you’ve picked to be painted the primary colors. I decided to keep two surfaces white nonetheless, so I topped those with the clear coat.

5. Paint the surfaces you’ve chosen to be primary colors two coats of the color nail polish — but one color at a time. If you rush to do all three as quickly as possible, you may end up smearing and smudging the polish.



6. Once you have two coats of the color polish on the necklace elements, remove the tape from the surfaces and paint with the clear coat and allow to dry overnight. This is the BEST way to prevent smudging!

IMG_7889 IMG_7890

7. Once the polish has dried on all pieces, connect them together with links/jump rings.


children of the triads.

8. Measure out 6 inches of chain for each end of the necklace and attach the ends to the main components.




9. Attach the closure clasp and jump ring to the necklace. Try on the necklace for size.


10. Oh yeah, now you’re done!


Wear it layered under the collar of a crisp button-down shirt, a vest on top, and some boyfriend denim… some color for a mens-wear inspired ‘suit.’

it’s kind of hilarious that i have another five or six projects half-way done, but not ready for the ‘publish’ button. ugh, they’ve gotta make their way onto here..

– Nita


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