Friday, September 4, 2015

Resin Clay Earring Card Punch Tutorial

By on Friday, September 04, 2015 6 Comments

Earrings present well if you have them on some sort of earrings card.  It doesn't matter if you don't make to sell, but the earrings will stay together in whatever gift box or bag you have. If you do sell though, the same thing applies.  Plus you can also use the cards themselves to hang on some suitable holder.

For a number of years, I just pinned these cards on cork bulletin boards on art easels which were then placed on the craft fair table.  I found the earrings on these backings sold better when "framed" in this manner rather than just hung on open earring displays like this one (I have this exact one from Fire Mountain Gems).  I believe it is the visibility factor.

Some artisans use their business cards as earring cards - a clever dual purpose solution.  I wrote about the available earring punches before which speed up the hole punching.  The kind which makes it possible to hang kidney/french wires as well as the hooks makes sense to buy because it also cuts out flaps as well as the holes.  But I thought I could speed up the simple two hole earring card punching idea by making my own out of resin clay. The hole placement would then be how I want it.

Here is how I did it using my own business cards.  You could also cut out your own custom blanks or printed cards using a paper cutter.

Start by making holes in a trial business card with a push pin.

I used basic "white" Apoxie brand resin clay bought from a local art store.  Like liquid resin, part A and B have to be mixed together to get the hardening reaction to start.  

One good tip - use scales and measure the parts by weight! No need to estimate at all. I used 16 g of each part.  (This tip also works for liquid resin.  I just use inexpensive little plastic shot cups from the dollar store. No need to squint trying to see markings on the usual measuring cups!)

Protect your surface, including the top of the scales with kitchen waxed paper. 

As both parts are similar in color, I just kneaded the mixture for 2-3 minutes to ensure complete mixing.  The working time of the clay is 2-3 hours before it starts to harden.

Make a brick shape out of the resin clay and use a polymer clay cutting blade or knife to trim the clay so it is the width of the card. 

Use something to flatten the edges. I used the cutting blade itself. Alternatively use the flat side of a ruler.

Place the trial card (from the first step) on the resin clay brick. Use it like a template to mark the holes on the resin clay brick with the push pin.  Then use the back end of a brush to make deeper impressions - centered on the push pin holes.

Now place two push pins into the depressions. Mind you don't poke yourself!

I also replaced the trial card onto the holes and trimmed the card to fit the resin clay brick. This card makes the surface where the pins are perfectly flat. No accidental indentations will occur when you use it as a punch.

Resin clay also has adhesive properties so the pins and the card will both be glued on.

Lay the punch on something appropriate and let it cure for 24 hours. You can paint it if you wish afterwards! 

Also be prepared to use up any leftover resin clay in a jewelry design so have something ready.  You could make some custom faux metal beads or stud earrings using connector beads.

To punch in as accurate a manner as possible, I lined up a ruler so that I knew where the central point is.  Business cards are usually 2 inches wide. Then aligned the pins centrally and pressed down into the cork mat.  Don't try and punch "in the air" as this could lead to card distortions.

You could use separate earring cards like mine above.  Here is what the reverse side of a business card will look like with earrings on it. 

And this is what it looks like from the back!

I used my iPhone 5, the camera+ app and the Modahaus Tabletop Studio TS400 in artificial lights - 2 anglepoise lamps each equipped with 100W daylight CFL bulbs with a boost from nearby ceiling LED light strip. Most of the photo editing was done in app but some photos needed a quick touch to lighten and contrast - not always successfully especially with the almost all white shots. Using natural light is me. Click here for more information on my How to Photograph Jewelry webinar.

Before You Go:
Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
Jewelry Making Tips - Jewelry Business Tips 



  1. I love this creative, practical solution which includes advertising! Thank you.

  2. Great idea, Pearl! It's certainly got me thinking... how about making the punch the same width as a business card for ease of alignment? Then you wouldn't need the ruler! If you made it carefully so the top edge of the punch lines up with the top edge of the card, that would also mean the holes in all the cards would be uniform height-wise as well!

    1. That was exactly what I had in mind when I came up with this tutorial. However in practice,even with the punch lined up with the card, I still couldn't get the two holes in a straight line. Hence the ruler. I did pick up speed with the ruler method too.

  3. Pearl this is a very sophisticated way of making sure that earring business cards are punched identically. I tend to use one card as a template, having measured where I want to place the holes, I then use a stout pin (such as the push pins you use) to punch the holes in my template card.
    Then, whenever I need to make more earring cards, I use the punched template card, lining it up with an unpunched business card . The 2 cards are placed on a surface such as cork and I punch holes into the new card using the holes of the template card as my guide. I have also made another template card where the two holes are offset so that one earring falls slightly below the other, as I like how that arrangement looks especially with longer dangle type earrings.

    1. I am just lazy. The punch helps speed up the process. But your way works just as well too!