Thursday, May 26, 2011

Make Your Own Nursing Necklace

I made my own version of Motherwear's $4 nursing necklace, so I wanted to share a mini-tutorial. I bought 3 yards of leather cord at a craft store for $3 (enough to make several necklaces). The faux shell donut was $2 from the same craft store. So, my necklace cost less than $4, assuming I use the extra cord to make other ones.

Here's how to do it:
  1. Tie the cord to the pendant. I looked at photos of necklaces I liked on Etsy for different ways to tie the cord, and asked Jaymz if he was interested in reproducing any of the knots for me (because he likes to do things like that with his hands). I chose this double-looped version for the first try, and it turned out great!
  2. Cut the cord off at your desired length, then wear your necklace! Keep in mind that you might want to tie it a bit lower when your nursling is playing with it and then tighten it up afterward, so leave a little extra slack just in case.
  3. Oops, that's it! Just two steps.
A few tips: 
  • Check out the bead section of your favorite craft store for sales. Buying beads (and donuts like this one) on sale will save you a lot of money. 
  • Keep in mind that your baby might put this in her mouth at some point, so (if you care about these kinds of things) be mindful of what materials the donut is made out of.
  • Also think about stimulating colors and textures when you're choosing a pendant for your necklace. A smooth, cool stone or glass pendant would be a great option, or carved wooden rings would be fun and pretty, too!
  • Consider using a smooth, round nylon or silk cord for a different look.
  • You could even add a bead in a contrasting color to the cord above the knot. Have fun experimenting with different ways to make your necklace!

Daniel is really enjoying playing with this when he nurses. I enjoy it because it keeps him from twiddling, pinching, or pulling my arm hair. (I can't be the only one with a fidgety nursling, right?) It looks pretty while still being durable enough to wear around a baby, and it looks and functions like a normal piece of jewelery.

For another attractive, inexpensive, baby-safe, DIY necklace idea, check out this tutorial from Lauren at Hobo Mama for how to make a knotted fabric bead necklace. Or, you could make one like this. So many options for us crafty-types to choose from!


  1. Love that stone! What craft store did you get that one from?

  2. @halfwaycrunchy: Thanks! I got it from Jo-Ann Fabrics.

  3. Pretty! I even have a pendant....I will have to get crafty....

    Your description of Daniel's pinching and hair pulling reminded me of when Riley used to scratch me while nursing! Argh. He would take his underneath hand, the one that goes around your side under the arm, and rake his fingernails on my skin endlessly. I looked like I'd had a run in between my armpit and a feral cat.


  4. @melissa: LOL! Yes, Daniel likes to scratch too...and tickle. Oh, the tickling!

  5. Thank you!! I've been thinking about ordering one - this is a much better idea!

  6. This is neat, thanks! One note: you might want to make sure the donut you buy specifies on the packaging that it is made without phthalates. Phthalates are endocrine disruptors that you do not want your baby chewing on. Many plastics - especially the less expensive ones - are made using phthalates unless specified otherwise.

  7. @J: Yes, good point! Thank you for reiterating my second bullet point in more specific terms.

  8. So cool!

    Thanks for reminding me I have twiddling to look forward to again… ;)

  9. Oddly, it really never occurred to me to make my own. I've admired them in local stores but they've always been expensive and not in colors I particularly liked. It makes so much sense to just make my own. *runs off to the craft store immediately*

  10. Wow, I love this idea. I bought mine for like $25... Next time around Im going out and making my own! Also means WAY more this way :) Thank you for the idea!

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