Monday, April 3, 2017

Easy Peasy Contemporary Cuffs Tutorial

By on Monday, April 03, 2017 7 Comments

I like to read but I can't read historical tomes all the time even though I enjoy them. I also read lighter and entertaining novels. And so it is with jewelry making. Sometimes you just need some quick projects to get that "I made something" fix. Therefore enjoy this easy peasy contemporary cuffs tutorial! I first featured them in this post which showcased Nunn Design's Winter 2017 Collection.


Nunn Design sent me two of their contemporary cuff forms with bezels for review (see photo below). I particularly love these antiqued silver ones.  These are plated with fine silver.


The antiqued copper versionis also lovely!!  They also offer asymmetrical ones like this antiqued silver one which has one round and one triangular bezels.

 If you don't like the cuff style, Nunn Design has round bangle bracelet with 3 bezels.

You can certainly save if you buy the bangles wholesale from Nunn Design.  Every first Monday, they offer a no minimum deal so you can buy less than the wholesale minimum.

As you can see below, using resin will require having to do each bezel separately as these have to be flat. You could use polymer clay and even bake it in the cuff. But you will have to remove them after baking and reattach with glue afterwards.


I took the quick way out for these cuffs!


The round bezel ones were so easy to do as I simply glued some sapphire colored Swarovski flatback crystals to them. The bezel dimension is 6 mm I had no trouble with the SS30 size which is about 6.32 to 6.5 mm. The tolerance of the bezel size is more relaxed than I thought.


You can make several of these for gifts in next to no time.  Consider using birthstone colors of couples, children, mother and daughter etc.  I like wearing these over long sleeved garments when regular bracelets can be hidden underneath.  I only had one but I could see a stack of 3 of these!


Rather than wait for baking, I used resin clay. This 2 part epoxy product will cure without heat and has its own adhesive properties.  I use resin clay a lot so I buy them in larger quantities. But if you prefer smaller quantities and want other colors, I suggest you consider multi-color packs like this Apoxie one which I have just received for review from Fire Mountain Gems.


Don't get large quantities because resin clay like its liquid cousin, has a definite shelf life.  I only keep the white/grey and Apoxie Sculpt in black  in larger quantities.  The two parts have to be mixed to activate the hardening process.  Most people just make two roughly equal sized balls from each part. But I usually use my mini scales to do it by weight. Working time is 2-3 hours so that is plenty.

Resin clay is not toxic although some people might be allergic to it. I wear my gloves especially when mixing because it is sticky!  Once the clay is well mixed, I made a long roll to fit the rectangular bezel cuff, trimming it off as necessary.  I used a flexible blade or slicer typically used in pol a flexible blade or slicer typically used in polymer clay work  to do it. You can also use an X-acto knife. Just be careful!


Pat down the clay to make sure it fills the bezels. Then use the blade to cut off the top of the clay roll so the clay is at the level of the bezel (not shown).  Black clay (resin and polymer clay) sure stains the fingers!


Then pat down some metal leaf.  I used imitation gold leaf.  The copper version is real copper as copper isn't as expensive as gold.


I didn't completely cover the black clay as I wanted the design to look rustic in keeping with the antique silver. I used an awl to neaten up the edges.


The leaf sticks to the clay.  Once cured - about 24 hours - I lightly sprayed with a little varnish a couple of times.  Done and done!





Disclosure
I do receive a small fee for any products purchased through affiliate links. This goes towards the support of this blog and to provide resource information to readers. The opinions expressed are solely my own. They would be the same whether or not I receive any compensation.

Photography
I used natural light, my iPhone 6S with the ProCamera app and the Modahaus TS400 tabletop studio (and a ceramic floor tile)  for final product photography. The tutorial pictures were taken with the same equipment but with artificial lights in my windowless basement studio. Check out my How to Photograph Jewelry Webinar .

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7 comments:

  1. Hello, Pearl! I first learned of epoxy clay from a Beads, Baubles and Jewels show, www.beadsbaublesandjewels.com, episode 2402 "Customize Your Components." In this episode, they added glitter, etc. to epoxy clay, plus they also showed their technique. I thought your subscribers may want to check it out for additional info. I love the stuff now. I've found it to be quite fun to work with.

    Also, I was at Michael's recently and they had their's on clearance (it's a very small amount for $3 but enough to do a couple or so small projects and to see if you like it). Just some thoughts...

    LouKYMom

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much for your tips! I totally agree with you. Resin clay is fun as well as easy to use. No baking necessary.

      Delete
  2. Oh you and Becky Nunn! I'm rolling my eyes at both of you because I just love this idea! And of course that means I'm going to have to go shopping! Again!!

    Great tutorial Pearl. I'm thinking Mokume Gane of course.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mokume Gane work will look marvelous with these cuffs.

      Delete
  3. I am not into bangles but I like the idea with clay and gold/copper leaf. Do you think gold leaf can be glued to the clay after curing with Mod Podge, for instance?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If you mean polymer clay then yes, you can use some sort of glue to adhere the metal leaf after curing. There is specific glue for metal leaf but I don't think you need it.

      Delete

 

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