DIY Punk Tom Binns style safety pin & skull necklace

Like many others, I’m entranced by Tom Binn’s jewellery which fuses a punk aesthetic with high couture for a unique finish.

Fab, right? But it costs over 600 pounds!!

Some of the best DIY’s I’ve seen on this are from Monoxious  and the letter CH, but hell, just get googling and you can find more. Here is mine:

Cobweb top – Alice Auaa
Corset – Gallery Serpentine
Sequin Skirt – Sportsgirl

What You’ll Need

1. A necklace – I chose one with multi strands of chains so I could get a chaotic, layered effect

2. Skulls, beads, charms, chains, maybe little bones…and safety pins! Raid your jewellery drawer and craft cupboard – you never know what you’ll find.

What To Do

1. Have a good look at your chain and work out where to put your various elements. I decided to only use the chunkier chains in my necklace for the bulky skull beads etc.

2. Start placing the beads and charms, attaching by means of safety pins or existing link chains, and take off again if they don’t work.

3. At a certain point you’ll need to affix your chain necklace to something that will keep it steady while you add more beads, chains etc…Otherwise the little beads may end up on the wrong side when being worn. I discovered this was happening with my little bones especially. I used a foam mannequin head and stuck pins through a couple of the chain loops at the back to hold it firm.

4. Keep going, adding and subtracting elements as you see fit. In my case, I took off the skull earrings as I felt they looked a bit tacky, and added more skull beads in various sizes instead…and more safety pins! (I had to rush up to the dollar shop for more, heh).

5. Try the necklace on, to see if the effect when worn is what you’re after. And make a bracelet to match, while you’re there! (Toyah Wilcox/Siouxsie make-up entirely optional)

(And, erm, take out the trash before you take a photo, OK? You’d THINK hubby would’ve noticed that before he took the pic – sigh…..)

There are lots of other exciting things you can do with safety pins and chains – why not pick your fave designer and attempt a DIY? This blog Brook & Lyn took a Moschino jacket and copied it using lots of tiny gold safety pins around the collar.

For myself, I’m eyeing off Balmain’s latest military jackets that have chains adorning each buttonhole and frogging, and the dress completely covered in fine gold chain. Hmm, gonna need a whole lotta chain…..

Have you DIY’d anything with safety pins? What would you like to make, if you did?

DIY Dread Wig from cheap costume wig

So, it’s August! Last month of Winter for us aussies & Spring is right around the corner – yeah! I just wanted to say hello to all the new alternative, goth & psychobilly chicky babes who’ve started following TFT recently – Welcome!

This month 5 years ago I did my very first dread wig, made from a cheap costume wig, so I thought I’d share how it was done. First – the finished wig:

Yes, I was into mini hats back then! And the back view:
Here’s a few shots from the club night I wore it to
With Amelia DestroyX
With Ian & Shana
With Rachel Black
Right, let’s get onto it, shall we?

How to make a Dread Wig
1. Select your costume wig
 I bought one that has little ringlets, as I’d gone all Pride & Prejudice for a fancy dress party. Ones with curls can be better than straight ones, as they’ll matt up nicely later when you go to “dread” them. If you have a foam head to put the wig on, do so now.
2. Section the wig off and start to dread the hair
Untwist the curls a bit and make lots of small sections. Start to backcomb the hair in each section.
See the thickness of my sections – you want relatively thick sections as they’ll shrink a lot later when you steam them.

and an extreme close-up – at this point it’s very loose & straggly
3. Backcomb & twist
As you backcomb each section, twist it as well, pulling hard with your fingers to make the fibres twist the same way.
4. Steam
So that the dreads tighten and stay set in place, the hair needs to have heat applied to it in some way. Some methods to do this:-
– You can boil a pot of water and hold each dread in turn over the steam hole
– you can dunk each dread in very hot water, then blow dry with a hot hairdryer while you keep twisting the dread (2 pairs of hands helps with this)
– if you have a proper steamer, of course use that!
– you can use straightening irons – but beware, this can squash and flatten the dreads if you’re not careful (and some fake hair can melt/go hard)

Pay particular attention to the ends of each dread, so that they taper nicely and are sealed off (again, dunking in boiling water is good). You WILL find the dreads shrink, so you end up with a wig that looks like it has a lot less hair than when you started (see pics above).
After each one is done, let the wig dry.
5. Add extra dreads to the wig
At this point it all looks a bit scraggy, so lots of filling in is needed. I made a bunch of dreads out of kanekalon (not very well, may I add – my forte was roving dreads). So either make some as I did, or if you have dreads lying around from falls or whatever, start adding them to the gaps.
If you look closely, you’ll see that I also added quite a few “dreads” that were in fact chunky strands of wool. You could use colinette, but in Australia here we have a wool that is very chunky and approximates a dread, so I used that. Sew each one in, or you could plait to the base of existing dreads on the wig.
I went for an edgy look that has black underneath, so it just peaks out from under the white dreads on top.
6. Fix the fringe
You may have long tresses instead of a fringe, which can be left how they are (depending on your wig). The fringe on mine was incredibly curly. If yours is too, just get your straightening iron out and straighten the fringe/bangs.Then trim it to suit – I did a nice ‘V’ shape. You may prefer to leave yours blunt across, or in a nice curve. Don’t make it too short!
Voila! The finished wig. 

So it just goes to show you don’t need an expensive one to get a look that’s hip and ready to take you to any alternative club in town! Or another fancy dress party 🙂