Gold Bar Necklace Pendant

Simplicity turned out to be so much harder than it looked: I saw a lady on Sunday who had a lovely & very simple necklace made up of three gold bars. I wanted to make something similar, but had neither the skill nor the equipment required to cast my own gold bars.

However, I had some gold vinyl on hand (thanks to my mother):

At first I thought I might just roll it or fold it. That failed to give it any weight at all, and that’s a pain in a pendant: it doesn’t hang right if it doesn’t have enough weight to it.

So I cut some pieces of leather cord:

Then, I used some double-sided sticky sheets:

I cut shapes and attached one side to the back of the vinyl, then just rolled it around the cord. I pinched the tops closed & pierced them with an awl so I could put a ring through it:

That was it. I just strung it on some gold chain —

— and at last, I had made something simple.

Love, Em

StingRay Leather

No, not really Stingray Leather, just Stingray pattern. I’m all for beauty, but not at the expense of an endangered species.

I recently came across the company Endless Leather, and got some of their wonderful and unusual cords.

I don’t really pitch companies unless I really genuinely like their product. I will have you know that I turned down $200 rather than write a blog post about an entirely dodgy looking gambling website. Firstly it was gross, secondly I was pretty sure you might think it odd that I had certainly become interested in such things. Up until now I have always felt I should say no thanks. Anyway, I quickly agreed to their kind offer because I genuinely think the selection they have is unusual and lovely.

They are based in Germany but the power of the internet brings everyone to our door. They also sent me some lovely clasps. I went with this brushed stainless steel one for the Stingray necklace/bracelet:

clasp

They sent me several different leather cords to work with and they will pop again over the coming weeks as I work my way through them.

So, I love the Grey Stingray leather print, but I wasn’t sure if I wanted to use it as a necklace or a bracelet and decided I would refuse to chose and make both.

For this I just cut half a meter and very easily attached the cord ends with some glue. This is it as a necklace

stingray 1

As you can see the cord is thick enough to hold its shape and it is a nice shape against the neck. Then if I want to wear it as a bracelet, I just wrap it multiple times around my wrist and close the clasp . . .

stingray bracelet

All very easy peasy, lemon squeasy.

Love,
Em.

Urban Decay Earrings

I went with the title “Urban Decay Earrings” because I thought it sounded so much better than A) “Yet Another Nail Varnish-Related Craft— honestly Emily, do you have nothing better to do with your life?”, or B) “Cardboard Earrings”.

So this was a total steal. I saw this—

“How to make earrings from cardboard” by Claire Coshan aka 3cardmonte

This one & several others can be found in this post on Hubpages, and they made it sound so easy I thought I would see if it was true.

Basically, you paint a bit of cardboard with one coat, let it dry, coat it again, then put it in the oven till it bubbles.

So I cut some circles out of cardboard. . .

So far, so good. I didn’t see a specific heating instruction in the original post, so I went with 350 degrees, figuring its always easier to turn the heat up than to try putting out a nail varnish fire. However, 350 was perfect, so I’d go with that if you want to try this.

Now, I’m not the most patient woman in the world, so I used the oven to dry the first coat. I didn’t let it dry completely because I figured a bit of drag would just add to the bubbly effect. Then I put a thick layer over the top. I popped them back in and it only took about 2 minutes, so I would stand and watch until you get the bubbly level you want.

Copying this experiment was easy, and whilst my earrings don’t look as good as theirs I’m at least in the same neighborhood. I reckon they may have used a third coat— and that could look awesome. Also, I think they varnished; and clearly, she’s better at taking pictures than me.

It might be interesting to try this process on metal, for a bangle or a brooch, I don’t think it would come out differently than cardboard, but if the metal itself was warm it might make a different pattern.

Anyway I think it’s neat, and this person— whoever they are— is my crafting god of the week.

Love, Em.

Butterfly Bracelet

I’d always assumed you couldn’t really paint on metal. I recently painted onto a table & did a piss-poor job. However, I was able to save it with the use of varnish: it was really effective at stopping the paint from being super fragile. So, I wondered about using the same process with painting on a metal bangle.

So I painted an aluminum bracelet with some blue paint . . .

It looked nice. But, as I suspected, breathing heavily on it was enough to make the paint come off. It might be interesting at this point to scratch-off patterns or paint another layer of a different color & scratch down to this layer . . . but that’s for another day.

Before I used the varnish, I punched some butterfly shape out of scrap paper:

Then i just Mod-podged them in place. Then it was time for the varnish. . . What I will say is that I used a crappy cheap brush & I felt like it made the varnish come out a little bubbly. Had I applied it more slowly, and with a better quality brush, I think I could have avoided that. It did do the trick, though: the paint is now pretty much on there for good . . .

Love, Em

Many-Loops Ring

I like the look of stacking rings, and also wanted to try something less traditional than my usual ‘blob-shaped, thing-on-a-ring’ . . .

I used a bit of copper wire for this because it’s so easy to bend, and I like that quality when trying out a process for the first time. I don’t have a ring mandrel, so I went with a bead tube that looked about the right width:

I wrapped it around a few times. It doesn’t need to be the perfect size for your finger, because you can pull it tighter or looser once you try it out. However, it did come with sharp edges . . .

I figured popping some beads on the end would add a bit of interest, plus take care of the sharp-edges issue.

I like the way it looked when I put it on. I needed to do a big of wiggling to get the perfect fit, but it’s super comfortable to the point I actually forgot I was wearing it. I definitely think it’s worth trying out with different beads & wire sizes. . .

Love, Em.