Friday, January 6, 2012

Recyling Crystal Teardrops

Small Bundle of Success #1
A small case of crystals has taken up space on my shelf for a few years and this December I decided to create jewelry using them.  There were vintage teardrops, Swarovski teardrops, and chandelier prisms - all have some kind of imperfection.  In the case of the teardrops the tops are broken and I just hate to throw them away. 
3 Teardrop Crystals with Bead Caps
My solution is to make bead caps with bales from silver metal clay and glue the crystals into the caps.  Since silver metal clay shrinks in firing, I knew I needed to make the caps larger.  I molded polymer clay over the top of the teardrop and baked it.  This gave me a firm form where I could build my bead cap of the silver clay.  I started with 3 forms and made 3 different caps with bales.  This was an experiment that worked!  The forms made the caps bigger than the crystals with room to shrink.  Also I found the perfect drying place for the clay caps......the points of my jewelry pliers!

Front Side

Back side

Style 2

After the clay was dry and sanded, I fired them in my kiln. 
The finished caps were brushed, polished and fitted to the teardrops.  Then I used E6000 glue and carefully attached the caps to the crystals.  I love them and think I will make several more for my etsy store (www.etsy.com/shop/lindabrittdesign) for Valentine’s Day gifts.  What do you think? 
 
Style 3 Finished!

Friday, January 6, 2012

Recyling Crystal Teardrops

Small Bundle of Success #1
A small case of crystals has taken up space on my shelf for a few years and this December I decided to create jewelry using them.  There were vintage teardrops, Swarovski teardrops, and chandelier prisms - all have some kind of imperfection.  In the case of the teardrops the tops are broken and I just hate to throw them away. 
3 Teardrop Crystals with Bead Caps
My solution is to make bead caps with bales from silver metal clay and glue the crystals into the caps.  Since silver metal clay shrinks in firing, I knew I needed to make the caps larger.  I molded polymer clay over the top of the teardrop and baked it.  This gave me a firm form where I could build my bead cap of the silver clay.  I started with 3 forms and made 3 different caps with bales.  This was an experiment that worked!  The forms made the caps bigger than the crystals with room to shrink.  Also I found the perfect drying place for the clay caps......the points of my jewelry pliers!

Front Side

Back side

Style 2

After the clay was dry and sanded, I fired them in my kiln. 
The finished caps were brushed, polished and fitted to the teardrops.  Then I used E6000 glue and carefully attached the caps to the crystals.  I love them and think I will make several more for my etsy store (www.etsy.com/shop/lindabrittdesign) for Valentine’s Day gifts.  What do you think? 
 
Style 3 Finished!