Saturday, June 22, 2013

How to Make a Pair of Earrings Using Found Objects and Repurposed Materials

Earlier, I posted a few new pieces of jewelry I designed using repurposed leather pieces found in an old jar that my daughter bought at an antique store and gifted to me.  I have made a step-by-step how-to for the earrings, not so much for instruction, but perhaps inspiration or as a way to create a new idea.

Select the pieces you are going to use.  To make these earrings, or a pair like them, you will need:

 - 2 recycled leather pieces
 - 2 pcs Denim Blue leather cord at 4" each
 - 6 jump rings at 10mm
 - 6 pewter large-hole heishi
 - 2 rivets - base and cap
 - 2 glass beads at 8mm 
 - 2 pcs of silvertone 26-gauge wire at 5" each.   

Next, take your leather hole punch and punch a hole in each piece, at about the place where the "figure-eight" narrows.  I do not use a leather hole punch, but instead, I use a drill and drill bit.  Then, feed the rivet base through the back of the piece to the front of the piece, place the large hold heishi on the rivet base and then add the cap on top of that.  The cap will not seem to fit perfectly into the heishi, but once you strike it with the hammer it will fit tightly.  Put your piece onto a metal block and strike the cap a few times with a jeweler's hammer until it fits together tightly.

Fold the Denim Blue leather cord in half and feed it through the bottom triangular opening.  
Grab the ends and feed them through the loop and pull it tight.

Add one silvertone large-hole heishi bead.  You can add other large hole beads and variations.

Decide where you would like the heishi to be placed on the leather cord and tie a knot at the end.  

Take one of the 5" silvertone 26 gauge wires and begin wrapping the wire around the leather cord until you get to the desired length you have chose for the drop.  Trim the end of the leather cord as needed. 


Feed the end of the wire through the bead you have selected and wrap it to the bottom of the leather cord as you would a briolette.  Trim excess wire making sure to smooth or sand any sharp edges.  

**Repeat the above steps to the other side.  

Next, add two jump rings to the top opening and then feed the third jump ring through those.  
Attach an ear wire.  

Repeat all the above steps to create the matching earring.

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