12 Days of Christmas, Tutorials

On the 2nd Day of Christmas: Forest Flair

I am currently doing my annual Use Your Leftovers challenge at Earrings Everyday (join me! It’s fun!) where I use whatever leftover beads and components are in reach. So I thought I would whip up a quick pair from these leftovers that happen to be strewn on my bead table.

CRAFTASTROPHE! The sorry state of my bead table….one corner of it! (I am totally dying of embarrassment!)

I first spotted some Vintaj leaves next to some enameled leaves from Gardanne. Now I could just simply layer one on top of the other, but that wouldn’t be too challenging. I decided the brass leaves needed a bit more…flair.

So I hopped over to my hammering station and pulled out a screwdriver to add some lines to the leaves. I kept the lines going in the same downward direction, overlapping them a bit.

After I buffed them with the Vintaj reliefing block to bring out the highlights. But they were still a bit too flat. So I took my chain nose pliers, holding the edge of the leaf, giving it a slight twist, back and forth. That makes the edges crinkle just a bit.

See the difference?

Add a jump ring or two and then the kidney shaped ear wires. But they still looked too simple. So I had to keep going.

I decided to embellish the ear wires to kick the flair factor up a notch. I don’t often have time to make my own ear wires (if you do, then that is awesome!), but the ones that you can get commercially are typically a bit…um….boring. I like to liven them up with a little bit of wire and some beads.

Pinch the little loop of the ear wire together just a bit. Then take about 3″ of wire and start wrapping to secure the loop. Continue wrapping up the front of the ear wire, adding a glass E-bead in between the wraps.

To embellish…or not to embellish?

What do you think…plain or embellished ear wire?

I agree. 😉 Embellished it is! Can you believe that something so lovely was made from the flotsam and jetsam of my studio craftastrophe?! Now these are ready to pop in the mail to my best friend Kari for her 50th birthday. Hooray!