I was on the torch one day last week and as I listened to Christmas music, singing to myself, I thought to would be fun to randomly sing a Christmas Carol in the comment sections of my favorite blogs. I was going to do a whole blog post about it and turn it into one of those chain games where everyone links to a bunch of people in their blog post about it. Alas, I never got around to it, but I still think it would be fun. AND, I realized I better write about it and claim the idea as mine, mine, mine before someone else thinks of it!!
Okay, since I couldn't pull off the next best internet blog tagging game, the least I could do is a quickie tutorial for you. A week or so ago, my friend Lindsey asked for some help on jewelry gifts for her Step Mom and Mother In Law. This is the project we came up with.
It is pretty easy to make and if you have the materials, shouldn't take more then an hour or so to do.
The Grandma Bracelet
1/2in wide 20g sterling silver flat wire cut to 1 1/2in strips
20g sterling silver round wire
3in of sterling silver rolo chain
Round nose pliers
Chain nose pliers
Metal hole punch
Liver of Sulfur
Step 1: Start by filing the sharp edges of the sterling strips where you'll be stamping names. In our example, we have a name tag for each sibling in the family and it is their children that are on the tags. (Ex: 1 tag for Lindsey's kids, 1 tag for her brother's children, 1 tag for her step brother's little ones.)
Step 2: Organize the letters you'll need to stamp names on the tags. I like to have all the letters I need right in front of me. Work from the center out, with the metal strip on your bench block. For the example shown, we stamped the "G" in Logan first. Then work your way out. Have fun and wiggle they letters, it'll drive you crazy trying to make them line up perfect. (DON'T use your good wire working hammers for this!! Grab your hubby's junky house hammer!!)
Step 3: As you are stamping the letters, give the letters a few good whacks for a clean impression, but not too hard or you'll have an extra outline from the outer edge of the stamp. The metal will start to curl as you go, don't worry about it! When you have all the letters of the names stamped, use your nylon mallet to flatten the metal back out.
Step 4: Using a metal punch, add 4 holes (one in each corner) to the center tag. On the two outside tags, put a hole in each corner on the side that will line up with the center tag, and put ONE hole in the center of the outside edge. I wrapped the tags against the handle of my hammer to get a slight arch to the links. That makes the links hug your wrist just so.
Step 5: Using round nose pliers and 4inch pieces of 20g sterling silver wire, make wire wrapped loops to link the tags together. It gets a little tricky linking the third and forth holes together, but go slow, you'll get it. I really like the chunky look of over lapping the wraps too. But you could put a bead in between or a little crystal... mix it up.
Step 6: Time to attach the clasp! I attached a toggle loop on one side with a wrapped loop. And the other side, I use a length of chain and the bar side of toggle. Adjust the length of chain to adjust the finished length you need on the bracelet.
Step 7: To finish things up, oxidize the bracelet with liver of sulfur and tumble for an hour, polish to highlight the stamping.
There ya go! You'll have to forgive any typos or weird phrasing, lol... I just threw this one together. Have fun with it.
Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle All The Way...
OOOHHHHH, what fun it is to ride in a one horse open sleigh, HAY!
Jingle Bells, Jingles Bells, Jingle All The Way!