Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Day 12 - Twelve Days of Christmas - Have Heart, Have Faith

As Decembers races along and we all get caught up in the hustle and bustle of Christmas, try to take a few moments to remember the reason for the season: the birth of Jesus Christ.

With that in mind, I have chosen a heart motif made of two angel wings, "stitched" together with love, along with a word spacer to convey the message Have Heart, Have Faith and spread goodwill amongst all people.

Here's what you'll need to make these earrings:

  • 4  x 9x24mm silver angel wing charms (there are many etsy vendors who sell these)
  • 2 x 6mm Siam Swarovski bicones
  • 2 x 6x26mm silver Faith spacers (feelinginspired.com.au)
  • 2 25x12mm silver end connectors (allaboutbeads.com.au)
  • 16 x 4mm silver jump rings
  • 4 x 6mm silver jump rings
  • 4 x 6x7mm silver oval jump rings
  • 4 x 4x6mm silver oval jump rings
  • 2 silver earring wires
Tools: chain nose pliers; flat nose pliers; round nose pliers; flush cutters.

String the crystal on a head pin and bend it at a 90° angle just above the bead with flat nose pliers. Take care not to chip the crystal.

Trim the end to 1cm (3/8") and turn a simple loop.

Place the two angel wings together, count down three holes and connect these two together with a 4mm jump ring.

Connect the two fourth holes together with a 4mm jump ring. You may need to open the wings to do this.

Connect the fifth holes together in the same way.

Attach a 4mm jump ring to each of the two wing tips.

Hook the crystal onto a 4mm jump ring and then hook it through the two wing tip jump rings.

Attach a 6mm jump ring to each of the top two holes of the wings.

Attach a 4x6mm oval jump ring to each of the two holes in the faith spacer.

Open the 6mm jump rings on the top of the wings and hook on the oval jump rings.

Hook another oval jump ring through each of the holes of the spacer so that they sit above the spacer.

 Attach the connector to the spacer with a 6mm jump ring on either side.

Open the loop of the earring wire and hook it through the top loop of the connector. Make a second earring to match.

Well, this is the final pair of earrings for the 2014 Twelve Days of Christmas Earrings Extravaganza - I hope you've enjoyed the designs I've come up with and found just the right pair of earrings to make for yourself or someone special.

This will be my last post before Christmas so I'd like to take this opportunity to wish you a happy, safe and holy Christmas. And I hope that Santa leaves a special treat for you under your tree - perhaps some craft supplies to play with or a good craft/jewellery-making book to inspire you.

See you again soon!

'Til then......


Monday, December 22, 2014

Day 11 - Twelve Days of Christmas 2014 - Putting on the Glitz!

Are you rushed for time and still needing a great pair of earrings for the festive season?

Well, for Day 11 of the Twelve Days of Christmas I have a pair that are glam enough for your Christmas celebrations yet they are sleek and modern, making them perfect for ringing in the New Year. And the best thing? They are quick and easy to make!

Here's what you'll need to make your Putting on the Glitz! earrings:
  • 14 4mm Preciosa Aurum bicones
  • 20 4mm Preciosa AB Crystal bicones
  • 2 gold filigree 4-petal bead caps
  • white nylon tube mesh (search "nylon mesh tubing" on Google - I found this link on Artfire which is similar)
  • 2 gold foldover cord ends
  • 2 gold head pins
  • 2 gold earring wires
Tools: chain nose pliers, round nose pliers, flush cutters, scissors.

Tip: Nylon Mesh Tubing will fray and unravel a bit as you work with it so always allow a little more than you need for your project.
 
Cut an 11cm (4 ⅜") length of tube mesh and insert three Aurum bicones into the opening.

Hold the tube half way along with one hand and the bead end with the other. Push your hands together to compress the mesh and the beads will move down the tube.

Centre them in the mesh.

Insert two AB Crystal bicones and one Aurum bicone into the tube and move them along to the centre beads.

Repeat at the other end.

Add two more AB crystals and one more Aurum crystal to each end. Insert one AB crystal on each end.

Line up the two end crystals in the tube and trim the mesh to 10mm (⅜").

Lay the two ends into the cord end, side by side.

Fold the flap down and hold it in position with the chain nose pliers. Fold the two side flaps towards the centre.

Flatten the flaps with the chain nose pliers to make sure the mesh is secure.

Open the loop of the eye pin and hook on the cord end.

String on the bead cap. Grip the eye pin above the bead cap and bend it sideways above the pliers to create a neck.

Use the round nose pliers to create a loop and then wrap the tail around the neck two or three times. Trim the excess close to the neck.

Attach the loop to the earring wire and then make a second earring to match.

It's always great to have versatile jewellery in your collection and this pair is just that - not only will they make great Christmas and New Year earrings but they are dressy enough for a night out on the town or for a special occasion. Why not switch up the colours and create your own look!

There is just one more pair of earrings to go in this year's Twelve Days of Christmas Earrings Extravaganza. Make sure you check back on Christmas Eve to see what they are.

'Til then......


Saturday, December 20, 2014

Day 10 - Twelve Days of Christmas - Snowflake Earrings

It's the middle of summer in Australia and in my little corner of the world, it's on the rather hot side. But that doesn't stop me from dreaming about the romantic notion of experiencing a white Christmas one day. With that thought in mind, I was inspired to create snowflake earrings for Day 10's Twelve Days of Christmas earrings.

These earrings are lovely and lacey and even look a little bit like filigree when you're wearing them but they are a bit on the challenging side because of the detail. Making them is fiddly but if you've got a few hours up your sleeve and you have patience, then this is a challenge worth accepting.

Here's what you'll need:
  • 28g silver wire
  • 2 x 5mm clear crystal bicones
  • 24 x 4mm Preciosa Crystal AB bicones
  • 24 x 2.5mm Preciosa Crystal AB bicones
  • 2 x 8mm silver rings with internal diameter of 6mm (feelinginspired.com.au)
  • 2 x 4mm silver jump rings
  • 12 links of 3x2mm silver oval cable chain
  • 2 silver earring wires 
Tools: chain nose pliers, round nose pliers, nylon jaw pliers, flush cutters, ruler.

Tip: Take care not to overtwist the wires in this project - 28g wire is easily broken if it's overworked. If it should happen to break, end the wire off by wrapping it around the ring a couple of times to secure it and then start with a new wire and anchor it the same way.


Cut 1m (39") wire. Leave a 75mm (3") tail  and wrap the wire around the ring twice to secure it. It should start and finish on top.

String the 5mm crystal and wrap it twice around the opposite side of the ring.

Bend the wire 1cm (3/8") from the ring and string a 4mm bicone. For a symmetrical snowflake, measure the length of this long stem on each of the six stems you create.

Push the bead up to the bend in the wire and bend it where it exits from the bead.

Bend the wires so that they follow the contour of the bead and then pinch them together. Whilst still pinching with one hand, twist with the other to start the twist.

After one or two twists, it will look something like this. Hold the two wires together on this "stem" where you want the twist to stop - I made it about 4mm (1/6") from the ring - and continue twisting it. This will tighten the twist.

It should look like this.

String a 2.5mm crystal and position it at the same height as the 4mm crystal. Bend the wire on both sides of it and then pinch them together as before. Hold the two wires together at the point where the  twisted wire of the first bead ends.

Twist the wires together.

String another 2.5mm bead as before and twist it into position.

Wrap the wire twice around the ring to anchor the first stem in place.



Add a 4mm crystal to the wire. Position it so that the hole sits at the point where the twist of the 2.5mm begins. Pinch and twist as before. Wrap the wire around the ring twice and continue adding beads in this pattern until you have added 6 long stems and 6 short stems.

 Tip: If you are finding it fiddly to pinch the wires, use chain nose pliers to grip them and then twist!

Make sure you have anchored the wire and then return the wire back to the start point but making sure it is on the opposite face of the ring.

Twist the two wires together .

Use chain nose pliers to create a neck.

Create a loop.......

and wrap the wire around the neck two or three times to secure. Trim away close to the neck - just take care not to cut the wrong wire!

Separate the chain into two 6-link lengths and set one aside for the other earring. Open the jump ring and hook on the wrapped loop and the chain.

Make a second earring to match.

These delicate earrings glisten and catch the light as you move - a very pretty, sparkly pair of Christmas earrings.

Join me again on Monday for Day 11's earrings - something that will take you from your Christmas festivities right through to your New Year's parties!

'Til then........


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