Wednesday, July 4, 2012

My Prize Winning Marseille Crochet Necklace

I am happy to report that my Marseille Necklace won 2nd prize in the Crochet Guild of America's Annual Design Competition, held at the Knit and Crochet Show in Manchester New Hampshire.
I set myself an interesting challenge for this project. I really wanted to put the necklace together by working in a freeform manner, and I didn't want to have any preconceived notions as to what it was going to look like. I have a large bag of scrumbles and unused pieces from old designs, so I decided that I would limit myself to using pieces from that bag first and then only crochet bits to fill in, if needed.

I emptied the bag and set to work sorting out pieces that I found interesting, and that I thought went together. Next, I got out my necklace form and began manipulating and pinning pieces in different combinations until I had a pleasing arrangement. Then, I spent a few days looking at it and experimenting with different ways of embellishing it. I even tried beads and sequins on it, but found that they didn't add anything to the look.  I decided that all of the embellishment would be made with yarn in embroidery or surface crochet. My favorite experiment and discovery, was the edging I put on the center medallion and sides of the necklace. I was ripping out one of my pieces to reuse the yarn, and since it had been blocked previously, the yarn became marvelously squiggly. I stitched it to the necklace with invisible thread and it made a nice delicate edging.  

I had all the blue and green pieces pinned together, but I still thought it needed another element. On a whim, I picked up a piece of lace from the bag and pinned it above blue and green pieces. I wouldn't have planned the necklace with lace on top, so I was surprised at how much I liked it!  Suddenly all the pieces fell into the right places, just in time for the deadline!  I was so glad, because I really wanted to participate in the competition.

Here is where the pieces came from:

The blue pieces were from made to go on my Geometric Splash shower curtain. I made them to use on the curtain, but in the end I didn't need them. They began as odd shaped strips, and I coiled up for the necklace.

Geometric Splash Shower Curtain

The Spiral squares were from a necklace that I had planned on making, but never did.

The ring on top of the medallion was left over from my film recycling crochet project. I covered it with thread, which gave it a plaid effect and added another level of texture to the necklace.

The lace was leftover from a baby sweater I made for my niece. I like that it is lacy and modern at the same time.
Niece's Baby Sweater
Necklace Fastening
The only pieces I had to crochet to complete the necklace were; the strip I wove through the lace, the blue ring that holds the film ring, and the bobble that acts as a fastener for the necklace. It was a really enjoyable project and a nice break from pattern writing!

If you would like to see the rest of the winning entries in the competition see Doris Chan's blog post.


  1. Beautiful! Congrats on winning 2nd place! That's so great!

  2. Thank you, Linda! A huge congratulations to you on winning a prize for your gorgeous dress!

  3. Wow .. well done on your award - well deserved! x

  4. Unbelievable work Shelby!! You outdid yourself on this necklace. Congratulations on winning 2nd place. It was well deserved.

  5. I loved this as soon as it was posted. Congratulations and thanks for sharing your inspiration!

  6. Thank you Magsiesss, Diane and Marie!