Irene Neuwirth Makes a Flower Necklace Out of Paper

The Los Angeles jeweler goes outside the box for her latest creation, part of our Designer D.I.Y. series.

At a time when everyone is isolated at home, nervous about spending money and without an occasion to dress up, what can we do to help you pass the time?

Styles has started a series of print-and-keep D.I.Y. wardrobe customization ideas, similar to the sewing patterns that glossy magazines used to provide. We want you to remember the joy of fashion and learn (or remember) how to make things at home. Some of fashion’s best-known creative talents will be on hand to guide you through the process.

“On a typical day, I’d be in my studio designing,” said Irene Neuwirth, a jewelry designer known for her use of candy-colored gems. “It’s what I love to do and where I love to be.”

But while sheltering in place at her California home, Ms. Neuwirth hadn’t just lost access to her creative space, but also to her storage of precious and semiprecious stones. What’s a jewelry designer to do without her jewels?

Go back to the basics — sketching and painting — and play around with some new materials.

Here, Ms. Neuwirth used one of her spring 2020 designs as inspiration for a colorful, one-of-a-kind necklace. She completed the project in about three hours, she said, “with pauses to take the dogs out, sit in the yard, answer emails.”


On white sheets of paper, Ms. Neuwirth drew seven distinct flowers, using her turquoise tropical flower cuff as a guide. Then she painted each flower in shades of blue, pink or yellow.

Draw each flower in slightly varying sizes, with the largest being about 3 inches in diameter. Ideally no two blooms will look exactly alike; that’s the charm of the project.

Fill in each with a watercolor — either the summery palate Ms. Neuwirth chose or your own combination of colors. Let the flowers dry before cutting out each one.


Using your double-sided tape, fasten the back of each flower onto your ribbon or twine.

Arrange the flowers so that they’re all touching, with some edges slightly overlapping.

Tie the ends of the ribbon in a bow.

Credit…via Irene Neuwirth

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