Posts Tagged ‘DIY earrings’

Say it Your Way with Easy Metal Stamped Jewelry

Wednesday, September 10th, 2014

You don’t have to be Frank Sinatra to do things your own way! That’s the beauty of metal stamping as a jewelry technique. Not only do you get to assemble components, you get to make your own components – and they can say whatever you want them to say!

 

Young Love Bracelet Tutorial

This Young Love bracelet is a perfect example of how you can easily customize jewelry with metal stamps! Click the image for a full tutorial.

 

Letter stamps are the perfect way to create monogram jewelry, plus jewelry with names or inspirational sayings. Design metal stamps are the perfect way to add cuteness and panache.

 

Hootie and the Sodalite Earrings

Learn to make these simple metal stamped earrings – just click the image above for the complete parts, ready to buy.

 

Designer Amy Mickelson’s “Hootie and the Sodalite Earrings” feature custom owl charms she made using an ImpressArt Metal Stamp and a JBB Antiqued Copper Plated Square Tag Charm. These JBB tags are plated especially for stampers – pretty amazing! For more on these components, see the full parts list and tutorial here.

 

Supplies for metal stamping a charm.

First, gather your supplies.

 

The basics of jewelry stamping are easy and only require a few tools. The tools are a small investment, but will last for years and thousands of impressions!

Supplies you’ll want:

 

The basic steps to jewelry stamping:

Getting ready to make a metal stamp impression.

Once you’ve planned your design, secure your metal tag or blank onto your steel block with tape. Stamp Straight Tape by ImpressArt is more expensive than masking tape, but it offers a sturdier edge and does not leave sticky residue.

 

How to get a good metal stamped impression.

Strike the perfectly vertical stamp with one firm blow. This is important for achieving a clear impression.

 

A successfully stamped metal blank charm.

Now you’ve got a custom made charm that’s uniquely made by you!

 

That’s all there is to it! It really is that simple. Then, you can use your completed stamped charms to make earrings, necklaces, bracelets, gift tags, and more!

 

Ava's Ladies in Waiting Necklace Tutorial

Click this picture for all the parts and instructions you need to make these pretty necklaces.

 

For a great monogram jewelry tutorial, see “Ava’s Ladies in Waiting” Necklace Tutorial in our Design Gallery.

 

Hootie and the Sodalite Earrings

Click this picture for all the parts and instructions you need to make adorable metal stamped owl earrings.

 

To make fun owl earrings, see the “Hootie and the Sodalite” Earrings Tutorial.

 

Young Love Bracelet Tutorial

Click this picture for all the parts and instructions you need to make a simple metal stamped bracelet.

 

For the full how-to on making a metal stamped chain bracelet, see our “Young Love” Bracelet Tutorial.

Rings & Things offers a huge variety of metal stamping blanks, plus jewelry stamping tools and supplies with fast shipping and free returns.

So what are you waiting for? Isn’t it time to say things your way! ~ Melissa

How to Make a Textured Copper Ear Cuff

Monday, April 21st, 2014

Ear cuffs have been all the rage in the fashion world this past year, from free-form wire-wrapped ear vines to ornate over the ear styles.

This tutorial shows you how to make a simple metal ear cuff in copper.  This simple design wraps around the outer cartilage of the ear and is a popular style for men.   It can be textured and colored as desired.

Make your own DIY copper ear cuffs

DIY Copper Ear Cuffs

 

Choose your Metal

This simple style ear cuff can be made from most any metal.  24-gauge copper or brass strips are easy to cut and manipulate.  This tutorial uses 0.25″ wide strips of copper sheet.  If you choose, you can use wider strips and cut the metal to your desired width. Or if you prefer a bit thicker metal, you can use 20-gauge sheet. Just remember,  this style needs to fit comfortably around the cartilage of one’s ear.

With a variety of patterns and metals to choose from, artisan patterned wire can also be an option for a DIY (do-it-yourself) ear cuff.  The patterned wire comes in several gauges.  If you use a heavier gauge wire, the ear cuff may not be adjustable.

 

Ear Cuff made with patterned wire

Patterned Wire Ear Cuff

 

First, Gather your Supplies

DIY Ear Cuff Supplies

Supplies for Creating Metal Ear Cuffs

Supplies Needed:

 

Measure and Mark the Cuff Length:

Measure and Mark the Metal Strip

Measure and Mark the Metal Strip

Measure and mark the metal strip.   27.5mm (or roughly 1.25″) is the average length for cuffs that fits on the (normal) middle part of the ear. The length can range from 25mm to 30mm.

Mark with a permanent marking pen on the film which covers the metal strip. You can alternately mark directly on the metal. Just keep some rubbing alcohol handy to wipe away the line if you make a mistake.

Cut the Metal:

Cut the Metal Strip with Shears

Cut the Metal Strip with Shears

Depending on the gauge, hand shears (#69-230 or #69-409) work well for cutting the metal strips.  A bench shear (#69-334) works great if cutting multiple pieces or cutting metal  sheet to a custom width.

 Bench Shear

EURO TOOL® Bench Shear

 

File the Edges Smooth:

File the Metal Edges Smooth

File the Metal Edges Smooth

Use a flat file (#69-252-01-4) to smooth the edges and slightly round the corners of the cut metal strip.

 

Texture the Metal:

Texture the Metal Strip with a Hammer

Texture the Metal Strip with a Hammer

Use a texturing hammer or the pein side of a chasing hammer to create a pattern on the metal piece. Hammer around the edges of the metal piece. If needed, file the edges again.

 

Textured Metal Strips

Textured Metal Strips

 

Shape the Ear Cuff:

Shape the metal piece around the 10mm barrel of the small Wrap n’ Tap pliers (#69-262-S). The 24-gauge copper bends easily around the barrel.

Use Wrap 'n' Tap pliers to shape the ear cuff

Shape with Wrap ‘n’ Tap Pliers

 

Form Ear Cuff around the 10mm barrel of the wrap n tap pliers

Forming the Ear Cuff

 

Color The Ear Cuff:

If desired, patina the copper ear cuff using Liver of Sulfur Gel (#86-322) or Novacan Black Patina (#86-310).

 

Shiny and Oxidized Ear Cuffs

Shiny and Oxidized Ear Cuffs

Using Vintaj Patinas is another option to add color to these DIY ear cuffs.  Use a paintbrush to apply the Vintaj Patina. Once dry, sand some color off the high points using a Vintaj Metal Reliefing Blockblock (#69-327). Seal with Vintaj Glaze (#86-421-900).

 

Add color to DIY Ear Cuffs with Vintaj Patinas

DIY Ear Cuffs Colored with Vintaj Patinas

For more DIY ear cuff ideas, see our “Make Fashionable Ear Cuff Jewelry” blog post.

 

Not into DIY? 

Rings & Things offers a wide variety of plain ear cuffs (including sterling silver, gold and silver plated) ready to embellish.

And if you are looking for ready-to-wear ear cuffs, we now offer six styles in sterling silver.  As a bonus, most of the ready-to-ear ear cuffs have openings or loops in the pattern, so you can easily add dangles or leave them as-is.

Spider Web Sterling Ear Cuff

Sterling Ear Cuff (#30-475-05)

 

Snake Shaped Sterling Ear Cuff

Sterling Ear Cuff (#30-475-06)

 

How to Put on an Ear Cuff

If you’ve never worn an ear cuff and don’t know how to wear one, here’s how.

Slide the opening of the ear cuff over the cartilage.

Slide the Ear Cuff Down

The ear cuff sits on the cartilage, and wraps around the edge of the ear.

Have fun creating and wearing these ear accessories!

Amy M

 

 

How to make Lashed Kidney Wire Earrings – Featuring SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS

Thursday, October 17th, 2013
Lashed Earrings with SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS set rivoli stones image

“Shining Stars Lashed Earrings” are created with SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS; bicone beads and rivoli stones add sparkle.

Learn this simple wire-wrapping technique and how to use pinch-style rivoli settings with this free jewelry-making tutorial from Rings & Things.

 

You will need these supplies to make lashed kidney wire earrings with SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS.

Step 1: Gather together the supplies you will need to make lashed kidney wire earrings.

 

You will need these And gather together the necessary tools; we used Glitter Line™ tools from EURO TOOL® tools to make lashed kidney wire earrings with Swarovski Elements.

And gather together the necessary tools; we used Glitter Line™ tools from EURO TOOL®.

 

You will need the following tools and supplies:

 

Jewelry making how to--setting a Swarovski rivoli stone in an antiqued silver bezel setting.

Step 2: Insert a rivoli stone in a setting and use round-nose pliers to pinch the setting closed. Repeat with the second stone and setting. The pinch-style rivoli settings don’t require messy glue or drying time.

 

Jewelry making how to: make lashed kidney wire ear wires with Artistic Wire and Swarovksi bicone beads.

Step 3: Use nylon-jawed flat-nose pliers to straighten the bend in the ear wire tail, this will allow the beads to slide on to the kidney wire.

 

Jewelry making tutorial, how to make lashed kidney wire earrings with Artistic Wire and Swarovski bicone crystals.

Step 4: Cut a 4″ section of 26-gauge wire and make three tight coils on the kidney wire near the loop. Use semi-flush side cutters to cut the beginning wire section off flush with the kidney wire.

 

Jewelry making tutorial, how to make lashed kidney wire earrings with Swarovski Elements and Artistic Wire.

Step 5: Add a crystal bicone bead to the kidney ear wire. Pull the wire across the bead and add three more tight coils.

 

Easy jewelry making technique--how to wire wrap kidney ear wires with Swarovski beads and Artistic wire.

Step 6: Add a second crystal bicone bead to the kidney ear wire. Pull the wire across the bead and add three more tight coils.

 

How to make jewelry--wire lashed kidney wire earrings.

Step 7: Add a third crystal bicone bead to the kidney wire, pull the wire across the bead and add a final three coils.

 

Jewelry making tutorial, how to make lashed kidney wire earrings with Swarovski Elements and Artistic Wire.

Step 8: Use semi-flush side cutters to cut the wire’s tail off flush with the kidney wire.
Repeat Steps 3 through 8 to make the second lashed kidney ear wire.

 

Jewelry making tutorial--how to add a Swarovski rivoli setting to a kidney ear wire.

Step 9: Add the rivoli setting to the kidney wire. Use round-nose pliers to crimp the kidney-wire loop closed; use flat-nose pliers to re-bend the kidney wire tail. Repeat with the second earring.

 

A jewelry making tutorial--handmade wire-wrapped earrings with SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS.

Your handmade “lashed” earrings are complete and ready to wear.

 

Your handmade lashed earrings are complete and ready to wear.  To make the “Shining Stars Lashed Earrings” pictured in today’s blog post, visit Rings & Things Design Gallery for a list of the exact stock used. Or change the colors by choosing from the Rings & Things 46 colors of 14mm Swarovski rivoli stones and 46 styles of Rings & Things exclusive Crystal Jams™ Assortments.   A pair of earrings can be made in less than 30 minutes, so why not make a rainbow?

Make things!

Mollie

Make Fashionable Ear Cuff Jewelry

Wednesday, October 9th, 2013

If you haven’t yet jumped on the ear cuff bandwagon, now’s your chance! Some ear cuff designs include an earring post to hold the design in place, but many of today’s styles work for both pierced and non-pierced ears, making them as versatile as they are trendy.

Customer service rep Tracy and Gallery guru Amy made the following Five Ear Cuffs to showcase some of the styles popping up.

Spikes Galore Ear Cuff

Handmade ear cuff featuring spike beads and sparkly glass.

Lightweight plastic spike bead assortments give this ear cuff pizzazz and drama!

The dramatic silhouette of this purple punk beauty is currently my fave! To make your own (in the color of your choice), you’ll need:

When creating the cuff base with your 20-gauge wire, start by forming a “hook” from the back of the ear to the top of the ear – this is what will hold the non-pierced jewelry in place!

Forming the hook at the back of a wire ear cuff.

Close-up of the “hook” at the back of your wire base. This one is covered with 1.7mm rubber tubing for a smooth finish.

Curve the wire around to the front top of the ear and work your way down, shaping the base to the curve of your ear. Once you get to the bottom, leave a few extra inches of wire (you will form this into a spiral later).

String on the beads from the bottom. Then, lash the beads with 28-gauge wire to help hold the spikes in place. Once the beads are in their final spot, create a decorative spiral with the extra wire.

Details of a wire ear cuff with spikes.

Once your beads are lashed, create a decorative spiral at the bottom of your base.

With a separate piece of 20-gauge wire, make a figure-8 (infinity) connector to attach a dangling spike to the decorative spiral.

Finally, slip the hollow rubber tubing onto the “hook” at the back of the cuff (illustration above). This covers up any rough wire end, which makes wearing your cuff comfy as well as stylish.

Floral Steampunk Ear Cuff

Wire-wrapped ear cuff made with genuine watch gears.

Genuine watch gears lend a steampunk edge to this otherwise feminine floral design.

To make this style of free-form wire-wrapped ear cuff, all you really need is wire and baubles from your stash! Here’s a list of components used to make the cuff pictured above:

As with the spikes cuff (above), extend your 20-gauge cuff base past the top front of the ear around to the top back of the ear and down. This is what holds this non-pierced jewelry onto your ear!

Option: You can add 1.7mm hollow rubber tubing to the back of this design for a comfy, professional finish.

A dab of Tenax Plus, or other super glue, can help situate larger beads and baubles that are difficult to hold in place with wire alone. In the example above, a dab of super glue holds the back of a flower petal to the wire cuff.

Sweet & Simple Wire Ear Cuff

Simple wire and crystal ear cuff.

This simple wire cuff sparkles with Swarovski crystal bicones and margaritas.

No need to get fancy! The elegant simplicity of this traditional-style ear cuff can become a base for various beads and sparklies. To make this lightweight wrap, all you need is:

Start the wire base by cutting a 2.5-inch length of 20-gauge wire. Divide the wire into thirds, and make a 180-degree bend at the one-third mark (so your wire creates two parallel lines at one end). Make another 180-bend at the opposite end. Curl each end of your wire (now in the middle of the design) into a small loop.

Simple wire ear cuff with crystals.

The ends of your wire are hidden under the crystal embellishments, leaving the cuff ends soft for comfortable wearing.

Now you’ve got your basic form. Use the center loops as a base for wire wrapping on beads and other sparklies. It’s easiest to lash these onto your cuff now while it’s still flat! (Or, for a basic wire cuff, just leave unadorned).

Once you’re done embellishing, use a pen, pencil, or mandrel to bend the cuff into a shape that will fit around your ear.

Classic Ear Cuff – “Ode to Bajor”

Classic ear cuff made with pre-formed cuff blanks.

This classic-style ear cuff uses pre-made blanks.

This ear cuff takes me straight back to the 1980’s, when I first wore cuffs make from easy-to-use pre-made ear cuff components.

To make the rhinestone chain earring cuff above, use the parts list and how-to tips for the “Ode to Bajor” Ear Cuff Project in our Design Gallery.

While this particular example requires pierced ears to wear, it’s even easier to create a cuff that doesn’t require piercings. Just add dangles to the hole in the ear cuff finding and you’re done!

Bollywood Style Chain Ear Cuff

Bollywood style ear cuff made with chain, beads, and baubles.

This East Indian style ear cuff uses 3.3mm chain instead of wire to wrap around the top of the ear.

This sumptuous feast of dangles is inspired by Bollywood jewelry. Instead of a wire frame that wraps around the ear, jewelry chain drapes over the top of the ear and holds the dangles in place. It didn’t take long for us to realize that this style isn’t the best for a night of head-banging on the dance floor. For a candle-lit dinner, however, it’s just the thing!

To make the chain ear cuff pictured above, you’ll need:

Cut the chain to your desired length, add your dangles, and voila! You’re ready for a night on the town.

We’re going to keep watching this fun jewelry making trend. In the meantime, have fun making ear cuffs!

You can buy wire, beads, and components right here at Rings & Things (just click the links in the parts lists above)!

Create with confidence. :) ~ Melissa

Make Your Own Halloween Jewelry

Tuesday, September 24th, 2013

Halloween has always been one of my favorite holidays – I suppose because I love having an excuse to wear a costume. Honestly, candy has nothing to do with it! ;)

Apparently I’m not the only one who loves dressing up in ghoulish attire because our Halloween beads & charms are selling as fast as fun-size candy at the grocery store!

Below you’ll find 5 DIY Halloween jewelry tutorials, from cute to classy! You can make these projects with beads and supplies from Rings & Things. Happy jewelry making as the clock ticks towards Halloween …

Mmmwwwuuuaaahaahaahaahaa!

“Charmed” Bracelet

Fun charm bracelet made with TierraCast charms.

“Charmed” Bracelet

This hauntingly cool charm bracelet is made by attaching TierraCast Halloween charms and 4mm round Czech glass firepolish beads to a ready-made chain bracelet blank complete with clasp.
Click here for a full parts list, suggested tools, & tips.

“Ceramic Pumpkin Trio” Earrings

Easy jack o' lantern earrings project.

“Ceramic Pumpkins Trio” Earrings

Who doesn’t love easy earring designs? Choose from 3 different ceramic beads to make your favorite version of these cute seasonal danglers. The kidney wires insure a secure earring design that won’t fall out even during serious bouts of trick or treating!
Parts list, tips, & suggested tools here.

“Craneos y Flores” Bracelet

Gemstone skull bracelet.

“Craneos y Flores” Bracelet

One of our most popular designs this season is the “Craneos y Flores” bracelet which links gemstone skulls and ceramic spacer gear beads. This project is great for el Dia de los Muertos too!
Get the parts list, suggested tools, and tips here.

“Vintaj Pumpkin” Earrings

Autumn harvest earrings project.

“Vintaj Pumpkin” Earrings

These stylish harvest earrings pair Vintaj Natural Brass petal blanks, TierraCast leaves, and large bone beads colored with Vintaj Patina inks. This makes a great mixed media project for those of you who want to expand your jewelry making skills!
Click here for parts, how-to tips, & suggested tools.

“Fang’s” Pin

Metal work framed spider bar pin.

“Fang’s” Pin

For those of you who want to try metal stamping and riveting, this is the perfect project for you! Frame a spooky creature of your choice with a custom stamped brass frame. You’ll create a top-notch bar pin for your party agenda.
Suggested tools, parts list, and design tips can be found here.

Lady skeleton plastic cameo

Lady Skeleton Cameo ~ not a project, but isn’t it cool?

Okay, I admit this lady skeleton cameo isn’t a completed project, but it’s currently my favorite Halloween component. It’s available in two sizes, too! Choose from 25x18mm and 40x30mm.
What cool stuff can you make with it?

If the above projects aren’t enough to get your spine tingling, find more Halloween & Day of the Dead jewelry projects in our Design Gallery.

Keep in mind that you can always take the basic idea of a project and morph it into your own design. Don’t be afraid to experiment … Dr. Jekyll and Dr. Frankenstein would approve! ~ Melissa

Button, Button, What to do with buttons?

Tuesday, June 18th, 2013

I love a good button. I think most bead hoarders have a button tin somewhere as well. The materials used for buttons range from the simple and inexpensive to exotic and pricey. Obviously buttons have a practical use in sewing and clothing design, but they can be great additions to DIY jewelry as well.

 

button box spill

button box spill

Buttons as beads:

Boston Bracelet and New Leaf Earrings

Boston Bracelet and New Leaf Earrings

By their nature, buttons tend to have either a shank, with an opening for thread, or 2-4 holes for sewing. These holes and openings mean your buttons can substitute for beads and work as connectors in jewelry design. See round TierraCast buttons with a leaf pattern in New Leaf Earrings and bone buttons sewn on the Boston Bracelet.

Buttons as clasps:

Dark and Dangerous Bracelet

Dark and Dangerous Bracelet

Whether for popular wrapped lashed leather bracelets, or for necklace designs, adding a button to one end of your design and creating a simple loop or series of loops at the other end will complete your creation. The Dark and Dangerous Bracelet uses a cast pewter Spiral Button for the closure.

Buttons as Cabochons or Cameos:

Cute as a Button Bracelet

Cute as a Button Bracelet

Disk & Loop Bracelets make up into quick finished jewelry by gluing buttons to the disks. If the button has a shank, you may need to trim it and file the surface, then add your favorite adhesive, and you have quickly created a new accessory. Cute as a Button Bracelet uses an assortment of plastic “accoutrements” by Tim Holtz for decoration.

Copies of Buttons:

Buttons, Molds, and Cast Reproductions

Buttons, Molds, and Cast Reproductions

Have a one-of-a-kind or vintage button that you love, but don’t want to part with? 2-part silicone molding material works great to make a mold of your treasure that you can re-create in polymer or resin and use time after time. Silicone molds were quickly made of the buttons in this picture. Reproductions of the buttons (without the pesky shanks) were easily made with Amazing Resin and SuperClear Resin. For more information on making molds, see our previous blog: Making Your Own Molds is a Hoot.

Buttons you can buy from Rings & Things:

Rings & Things carries buttons in materials such as bone,

Assortment of Bone Buttons in various colors.

Assortment of Bone Buttons in various colors.

plastic,

Plastic Button Assortments

Plastic Button Assortments

cast pewter

A sampling of pewter buttons.

A sampling of pewter buttons.

one lone sterling offering

Sterling Flower Button

Sterling Flower Button

and SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS crystal

Crystal Buttons

Crystal Buttons

 

Making a Button:

Resin Flower Buttons

Resin Flower Buttons

Do you have an item without holes that you want to use as a button? Easily glue a plastic button shank to your piece to create a button. These work great for turning resin, polymer clay, hand-made glass, and ceramics into useable buttons. Since these shanks are plastic, they don’t have the sharp edges that you sometimes find on metal shank findings. The set shown above are made from resin flowers, colorized with gilders paste, and attached with E-6000.

Changeable buttons:

Cast Resin Button Covers

Cast Resin Button Covers

With a button cover and some glue, you can create a decorative cover that can be transferred from garment to garment, covering the plain or boring buttons used in manufacturing. This set is made with super clear resin, colored with dye and glitter, and attached with E-6000.

Our pinterest board “Buttons” has further inspirations for using buttons and great handmade buttons.

 

~ Rita

Easy Elegant Earrings

Wednesday, May 29th, 2013

Easy Elegant Earrings

Using one-step looping pliers and a few supplies, you can have a set of fantastic earrings in under 30 minutes!

Free simple DIY earring project! All supplies available at www.rings-things.com.

Step One:

Gather supplies

Free simple DIY earring project!  All supplies available at www.rings-things.com.

Step Two:

Lay out pattern and mark paddles

Free simple DIY earring project!  All supplies available at www.rings-things.com.

Step Three:

Loop paddle-end head pins

Free simple DIY earring project! All supplies available at www.rings-things.com.

Free simple DIY earring project! All supplies available at www.rings-things.com.

Free simple DIY earring project! All supplies available at www.rings-things.com.

Step Four:

Adjust and tighten loops

Free simple DIY earring project! All supplies available at www.rings-things.com.

Step Five:

Assemble

Free simple DIY earring project! All supplies available at www.rings-things.com.

Free simple DIY earring project! All supplies available at www.rings-things.com.

Free simple DIY earring project! All supplies available at www.rings-things.com.

Step Six:

Repeat for other earring & enjoy!

Free simple DIY earring project! All supplies available at www.rings-things.com.

 

For more information, scroll down to see the video tutorial and review tips on this one-step looping pliers page.

Turn it upside down!

Thursday, December 22nd, 2011

What happens when you take the oh-so-popular Swarovski crystal tree charm pattern and turn it upside down? Beautiful, festive crystal earrings that can be worn year-round!

melissa-earrings

The French clips are another nice touch. Melissa made these classic clear crystal margarita earrings while on vacation with her mom and I snatched them off her ears as soon as I saw them. I think they look like frosty pine cones or icicles, but in a subtle way. Unlike the “real” crystal trees, they’ll still look appropriate in June. Something to keep in mind if you’re making last-minute gifts! ~ Cindy