Monday, January 7, 2013

Jewelry Making with a Wax Seal Stamp & Clay!

I love jewelry.  Really, I love all accessories.  My family loves to tease me about my giant sun hats and outrageous necklaces.  This year for Christmas my husband actually bought me a jewelry armoire.  We decided a jewelry box was nowhere big enough for all my stuff, so he got me a 4 foot tall jewelry storing beast!  I love it!  I guess that has put me in an even bigger jewelry mood because I have been dabbling in jewelry making since that day.  First I made a metal stamped necklace and now this:


The strap is basic enough, just braided DMC thread, but the "charm" on it... that's baked clay that I shaped with a wax seal stamp!

Does everyone know what I'm talking about when I say "wax seal stamp"?  It is a type of stamp that is often used in formal occasions (weddings, etc.) to seal up an envelope.  To use it, you melt a stick of wax onto the paper then press the stamp into it.  I happened to just own this because I am a sucker for that type of thing.

For this project however, no wax is needed.  Here IS what you will need:


You may actually use any type of thread that you are comfortable with.  I could not find what I was looking for, but I think DMC thread is easy to work with.

I chose the blue and green shades because they are included as some of the "HOT NEW COLORS OF 2013" (this may be the first time I am ever actually up on trends!) and I thought gold was a nice accent color.

{How to Make It}

{1} First, gather a small amount of clay and press the design into it with the wax seal stamp.

 
MAKE SURE to put holes in the clay BEFORE you bake it.  I used a safety pin to do this.

{2} Bake the clay as instructed and allow it to cool.

{3}  Paint the clay and let it dry.

{4} String the thread through the holes in the clay piece. You will need three pieces of thread to braid,
       so cut evenly measured strips of thread (I used 2 greens and 1 blue). Place a green piece on each
       side, making it loop through the holes. The blue thread will be shared between the two, giving each
       side a third piece.

{The pattern on the back came from pressing the clay on top of paper towel!}

{5} Once the pieces are in place, tie the green threads in a knot to secure everything.  When this step is
       finished, it should look like this from the back:


{6} All you have left to do is to braid each side.  I knotted mine at the ends and added a little gold bead to each thread.  I also made my bracelet adjustable- but that is up to you.

To make it adjustable:  Take a separate piece of thread and with the ends of the bracelet overlapping each other by a few inches (the whole thing being in a circle shape like it would be on your wrist), tie a loose knot.  Then, flip it over to the other side and tie a knot again.  Repeat by flipping the bracelet over back and forth until you have several knots in a row.  This should work as a holder, which allows the bracelet threads to slide back and forth.  (Sorry I don't have pictures of this!)


{I also made a long braided piece with blue, green and white to be worn with this bracelet}

{Your Turn!}
I have always loved the look of the wax seal and now I get to wear that look around with me all day!  What do you think?  For more ideas on jewelry making, check out these posts on charm bracelets with buttons, "grown-up" shrinky dink necklaces and my metal stamped necklace.  Enjoy!

Happy Crafting,
Kelsie Ann

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