Sunday, February 28, 2010

Wire Wrapping For Beaders

For many jewelry artists, beading was the first step that started the jewelry making bug. The next step is often learning wire wrapping techniques.

If you love beads are interested in working with wire, we have developed a number of tutorials that you may enjoy. If you want to create your own designer jewelry using genuine gemstones, wire and a few tools you can purchase at your local hardware store or bead shop, then these tutorials are for you:

How to Make Citrine Drop Earrings
How to Make Emerald Drop Earrings
How to Make Smokey Quartz Earrings
How to Make Apatite Jewelry
How to Make a Tanzanite Bracelet

If you mastered basic stringing and want to expand your interest to include wire or if you just began working with wire and want some additional ideas on how to make wire wrapped jewelry and crafts, then you may find these tutorials to your liking:

How to Make a Wire Wrap Pendant
How to Make Wire Wrapped Rings
How to Make a Heart Shaped Bookmark
How to Make a Money Clip
How to Create Ear Cuff Jewelry
How to Make a Custom Bookmark

If you love wire and want to take the next step and begin basic stone setting, then this tutorial may pique your interest:

How to Make Moissanite Stud Earrings

Friday, February 26, 2010

All about Copper

We love copper. The color of copper is rich and the material is a lot less expensive than silver or gold. Copper is said to help prevent inflammation in folks who suffer from arthritis and other similar ailments. Whether you wear copper jewelry to help cure what ails you or just because copper is beautiful, we thought you might enjoysome of our tutorials on copper.

Copper jewelry making techniques:
How to Heat Patina Copper
How to Make a Blue Metal Patina
How to Smooth Sharp Edges on Copper Brass and Sterling Wire
How to Etch Brass and Copper for Jewelry Making

Copper jewelry & crafts:
How to Make a Copper Mezuzah
How to Make a Copper Bead
How to Make a Copper Necklace
How to Make a Copper Stamped Bracelet

Copper storage:
How to Prevent Copper from Tarnishing

Using copper in kiln fired glass:
How to Keep Copper Inclusions from Oxidizing in Fused Glass
How to Fuse Copper into Glass

Thursday, February 25, 2010

All about Glass Clay

We love pate de verre and glass clay is a great modern way to get the look of pate de verre kiln fired glass without the mess of a plaster mold. We have been using glass clay, freeze and fuse as well as traditional pate de verre mold making methods to create jewelry, platters and other fused glass goods. We had a great time sharing our technique in a studio seminar. Sorry you missed it, but here are some tutorials based on hand outs that you might enjoy:

How to Make Glass Clay
How to Form Glass Clay
How to Use Glass Clay
How to Fire Glass Clay

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Melt Wine Bottles into Crafts and Jewelry

Save those wine bottles (after you enjoy the wine, of course). You can give new life to your garbage by taking glass bottles out of the recycling can and re-purposing those discarded bottles into incredible arts and crafts. Here are a few ideas:

How to Melt Wine Bottles into a Bead
How to Melt Wine Bottles into a Cheese Tray
How to Melt Wine Bottles into Jewelry
How to Melt Wine Bottles for Lampwork

Monday, February 22, 2010

Make Your Own Earrings

Wow! We covered a lot of ground in our modern earring clinic this weekend. We began the clinic with wire wrapping techniques that required few tools and no soldering. This was a daring crowd and the group used some exotic stones. Here are a few examples of the types of projects that started off the workshop:

How to Make Emerald Drop Earrings
How to Make Citrine Drop Earrings
How to Make Smokey Quartz Earrings
How to Make Pearl Chandelier Earrings

Next we began to add fire. We got out the small creme brulee kitchen torches and used them to make jewelry for our ears rather than desserts that would satisfy our mouth but then settle in our butts. Here is an example of the small project for stud earrings:

How to Make Star Stud Earrings

Finally, we practiced a little stone setting. Nobody walked out with diamonds (not a great stone for your first project) but our ears sure sparkled. Here are some notes:

How to Make Moissanite Stud Earrings

Saturday, February 20, 2010

All about the Ear Cuff

Yesterday was all about the ear cuff! We put on the movie version of Mamma Mia, sang to the music and enjoyed an amazing ear cuff seminar. While we made ear cuffs in every shape and size some of the girls shared stories of their own adventures in their wild and crazy youth. Sorry, I am sworn to secrecy..but a good time was had by all. Here are tutorials based on some of the hand outs so you can make and wear your own ear cuff:

How to Wear Ear Cuff Jewelry
How to Make Ear Cuff Jewelry

Friday, February 19, 2010

Working with Acrylic

Acrylic is a great media for creating innovative jewelry. Earlier this week we held a seminar on plastic jewelry making. Participants learned basic jewelry making techniques for acrylic. Following are tutorials:

How to Transfer a Design
How to Cut and Score Acrylic Sheet
How to Cut Acrylic for Jewelry Making
How to Drill Acrylic
How to Use a File for Jewelry Making
How to Sand Acrylic Sheet

After learning how to use new materials we rummaged through the recycling bin and began turning trash into treasure. Here are a few examples:

How to Make a Pendant from a Hotel Key
How to Make Charms from Plastic Bottles
How to Make a Bracelet from a Credit Card
How to Make a Ring from a Bottle Cap

Finding craft supplies in the recycling bin and repurposing those materials into jewelry is a great way to save money, fuel your imagination and help save the planet. So....what are your going to make with your scrap plastic?

When you make your trash into treasure nobody but you has to know-- but you may want to tell. Such a clever crafter!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Polymer Clay Tips for a Snowy February!

We have been playing with polymer clay and we have new tutorials to share:

How to Soften Polymer Clay
How to Prevent Fingerprints on Polymer Clay
How to Roll Thin Translucent Sheets of Polymer Clay
How to Make Straight Holes in Polymer Clay Beads
How to Use Polymer Clay Molds
How to Create Polymer Clay Molds
How to Use Future Floor Wax on Polymer Clay
How to Make a Hand Drill from Polymer Clay
How to How Make Polymer Clay Buttons
How to Use a Water Slide Decal on Polymer Clay
How to Make a Polymer Clay Dreidel

So grab your favorite brand of polymer clay (we like Premo!), get out your old past machine (or search the yards sales until you have one you can devote to claying) and get ready to have fun. Polymer clay is a blast with the kids...but you do not need to wait until the kids are interested to start the fun. You can use polymer clay to make all sorts of beautiful art jewelry and to make innovative crafts you can use around the house, adorn yourself or give as gifts. So get claying. :)