Wednesday, July 25, 2012

mermaids underwater

The long, HOT summer is getting to me. 
Time for an indoor craft with images of cool water and mermaids.

This is a project I did for Nunn Design that was featured last week in Jewelry Making Daily's free E-Book: 
6 Free Mixed-Media Jewelry Projects: How to Make Jewelry with Leather, Fabric, Paper, Glass and More

To get your copy of the book, download HERE:

Underwater Mermaids Resin Necklace

by Stephanie Gard Buss

Nunn Design sterling silver Grande Pendant Circle 
Nunn Design Bathing Beauties collage sheet 
Nunn Design sterling silver conch charm 
Nunn Design sterling silver ring toggle 
Nunn Design sterling silver twig toggle bar 
Nunn Design silver filigree bead cap 
Nunn Design two-part epoxy resin 
Nunn Design silver jump rings 
Nunn Designs ilver head pins 
silver eye pins or wire 
pearl beads 
JACQUARD-Pearl Ex Powdered 
Pigments Series 2 
glass glitter 
glue or paper sealant 
Wire cutters 
Round or chain nose pliers 
Small paintbrush 

Nunn Design jewelry components:; JACQUARD-Pearl  
Ex Powdered Pigments Series 2:; glass glitter:  Rose Mille or

STEP 1 Cut your image from the collage sheet. Glue it in the bezel  
setting, then coat with glue or sealant to seal the image. Set aside to dry. 

STEP 2 Using eye pins or wire, link glass pearls together into a chain until 
they are the length you want for your necklace. Attach the toggle clasp 
at each end. 

STEP 3 String a pearl onto a head pin, add a bead cap, and finish with a 
loop on top. String a small pearl onto a head pin and finish with a loop on 
top. Attach a small jump ring to the conch shell. Slip all three charms onto 
a larger jump ring. This will drop from the bottom of your bezel pendant. 

STEP 4 When glue is dry on the image, dip a small paintbrush into your 
pigment powder. Here I wanted to create depth around the image, so I 
used the darkest color in the crevice, then a richer blue around the image. 
This is totally freestyle — do what you wish. 

STEP 5 When you are happy with your image, it’s time for resin. Mix  
two-part resin according to manufacturer’s instructions. Gently pour into 
the bezel but not all the way to the top. Allow the resin to set for about 
30 minutes; then carefully sprinkle glass glitter where you want it and 
allow it to finish curing overnight. If you put the glitter in while the resin  
is still very liquid, it wants to draw itself together into a clump. 

STEP 6 After leaving it to cure overnight, mix another small batch of resin 
and finish filling the bezel so it domes nicely. Also, if you don’t cover the 
glitter with this second layer of resin, the edges of the glitter will poke out 
of the resin and be scratchy. 

STEP 7 Finish your necklace by attaching the pendant to the pearl bead 
chain and attach the charms to the bottom loop of the bezel with a 
jump ring. 

Voila! You have your cool, beachy necklace. Now go and wear it before summer's over! :-)

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Bead & Button 2012

Wow. That was really really really FUN. 

This year was my first time at the Bead & Button Show in Milwaukee. I went specifically to meet Becky Nunn in person, as I am serving on her Innovation Team this year and it was a great opportunity to meet her and two other members of the team: Erin Prais-Hintz (www.tesoritrovati.comand Rochelle Nation (  Erin got me hooked onto polymer clay--which will be a whole different blog post--and we had a great time urging each other on shopping for gemstones!

Aside from shopping, shopping, shopping, I took two classes. The first one,  Wrap-Around Shabby Chic, taught by Kieu Pham Gray,  was fun and entertaining, but nearly drove me crazy as it was not only bead weaving, but bead weaving with TWO needles. I hate bead weaving--what was I thinking? Precision is NOT my strong suit. I think I can safely say I will never make one of these bracelets again. Sorry Kieu, it's not your fault--I'm hopeless!

The second class, Mini Wearable Altar, taught by Cheri Lenart and Linda McNulty, was totally awesome. The teachers, sisters of Susan Lenart Kazmer, were wildly creative and funny. And I not only got over my fear of resin, I learned about how to layer items in resin, and had a supervised lesson in mini-collage. I've been collecting bits and pieces of interesting ephemera forever. Finally, I have a way to incorporate them into jewelry beyond the standard bezel setting. We also learned how to cast in resin, and how to use resin with a backless bezel or frame. Some of the bezels we used were far too big for me to comfortably wear, but I was introduced to the idea of tying them up with lots of sari silk and using them as wall art. Hmmm....  

And then, there was the shopping! Great deals from Nunn Design, fantastic vintage findings from Sandy Schor, the most beautiful sari silk, and Czech glass colors I've never seen before...oh, I can't wait for next year!