Thursday, May 5, 2011

My First Attempt at Making Jewelry

Not too long ago, I made my first purchase from Michaels' jewelry aisle.  I know absolutely nothing (nothing!) about making jewelry.  (I barely know anything about wearing jewelry.)  But like many crafts that I've never done, I figured it couldn't be that hard.  You'd think I'd know by now to never make that assumption.

Back in November, there was a vendor at the Sacramento Scrapbook Expo that was selling adorable ceramic scissor charms in a tiny bucket for 25 cents each.  They looked just like little Fiskars scissors.  Aren't they so cute?!


I had a dollar in my pocket, so on a whim, I bought 4.  My plan was to make necklaces for my two newest Fiskateer recruits (Sheena and Amanda), the Fiskateer who recruited me (Jennifer), and myself.  Every Fiskateer has a number, so I wanted to personalize the necklaces with those numbers.

I decided to work with shrink plastic.  I used the Fiskars Stamp Press and Staz-On ink to stamp the numbers on the shrink plastic.  Amanda is #7259.


I cut the shrink plastic into the shape I wanted, punched the hole, and shrunk them.  Perfect!  I was really pleased.  Gee, these necklaces were going to be so easy to make!

Then I went to Michaels.  I'm not sure what I was picturing, but whatever it was, I couldn't find it.  Instead, there was a dizzying assortment of jump rings, clasps, end caps, and chains of all different sizes and finishes.  I must have stood there for 30 minutes picking up packages, studying the instructions on the back, and eventually putting them back.  It was all so confusing!

Eventually, I bought a long piece of chain, a package of jump rings, a set of end caps, and four magnetic clasps.  The instructions on the packages were very brief and not at all helpful... didn't they know I was a total beginner?!  I cut the chain into lengths.  That went smoothly.  As for the rest, I didn't have the right tools and attaching those tiny pieces was tricky!  I kept trying.  I eventually googled jewelry making and learned that I was opening the jump rings incorrectly.  Oops!  Doing it the right way made a big difference. 

Here are the four necklaces (from left: mine, Jennifer's, Sheena's and Amanda's):


And here's a close-up of mine:


Well worth the effort, I'd say!  My friends all liked theirs, and I've received many compliments from other Fiskateers.  Still, I don't anticipate more jewelry making in my near future- at least not without some instruction in the basics!

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