Saturday, 24 September 2011

Make Your Own: Five-Minute Earrings Using Epoxy Stickers

Another instalment of my Enduring Sticker Love series, here I wanted to show you just how easy it is to use (and to love!) these epoxy stickers, by making a pretty pair of earrings - and the best thing is it really only takes five minutes!

It may help to know that I was about to go out and I couldn't find any earrings to wear that I fancied wearing.  Sometimes you just have to have something new - so I figured I would make them!

I gathered my materials - simply, a pair of earwires and earnuts for the backs, a little bezel tray (here I used two of the 13x18mm silver plated ovals from the shop), two stickers, two lots of images, and a bit of ModPodge.

You need to peel off the plastic film protecting your epoxy stickers - I say 'protecting' but these stickers are actually very sturdy little things, they will withstand most things that life as an earring can throw at them.  So, peel off the plastic film, grab your sticker and position it over the paper.  I used a simple inkjet print from my home printer and I did not seal it in any way.

Here I was hoping to recreate a butterfly in two halves. It didn't quite work as I ended up with a mutant butterfly that has two bodies, and slightly askew it is too, but when you wear the earrings nobody really notices, so we're good.

The adhesive on the epoxy sticker will provide a good fast bond, but just make sure you have no bubbles showing through by rubbing the sticker against the paper.  Then carefully cut around the sticker so you have two images of the exact size for your bezel.

Glue these with a little bit of ModPodge to your bezel setting.  If the ModPodge comes up over the side of the sticker, it's fine, just ignore it for now - first of all, it dries clear, and secondly it's far easier to peel off when it's dry than it is to wipe when wet.  However the sticker will benefit from wiping with a damp kitchen towel when it is totally dry just to remove any traces of errant ModPodge.

Hang from your preferred earwires, and that's really all there is to it!

Beautiful earrings, in a jiffy.

All image credits to Download -

Make Your Own Buttons!

Add a new creative twist to your jewellery with our lovely button making kits now available in the shop

You start with two pieces of metal and end up with a beautiful button that is covered in the fabric of your choice.  The buttons are available in a choice of sizes, 15mm and 22mm:

and two versions:  flat back and wire back. 

The flat back buttons are ideal for gluing onto rings, earrings, hair pins and pendant findings, and the wire back buttons are perfect for stringing and for threading onto hairbands. 

These buttons come with a making tool for assembling your buttons (each size of button needs a different tool, but different backs can be used with the same tool as long as the size of button is the same).

To make your pretty buttons just pick some fabric – thin fabric is best – and cut a circle that’s about 1-1.5cm wider than your button.

Pop the fabric onto the white part of the tool, pattern-side facing down, and sit your button over this, ensuring that any pattern is centered in the position you want it to be (this can sometimes be a bit tricky!).  Then, with the red bit of the tool, press down into the white bit so that the fabric and button top are snug inside the white part of the tool.  

Bunch the fabric back into the button 

place the back of the button on top, ensuring it is perfectly centered

 and with the red bit of the tool again press down hard so that it fits right inside the button. 

Finally, pop the button out of the tool, and there you go, a perfect button that you have made yourself!

If you have chosen to use flat back buttons, you can simply glue these into place onto rings and hairpins or simply add a magnet, pin or tiny brooch back.  

To use them with pendant trays, you may have to apply your glue to the edge of the button rather than to the metal back.  This is because there is a 1-2mm edge where the button sides are higher than the back, so sometimes you may have to add a riser so that the back is flush with the edge so for certain applications this would be useful.  You can use a rubber pad, washer, or a foam sticker (as used in card-making) – just ensure your glue is a strong one.

I have used a small riser on the hairclips above, however for items such as rings and hairpins, a riser should not be necessary.

The 15mm flat backs fit beautifully into our 15mm bezel trays, and we are investigating offering 22mm trays.

The wire back buttons have a loop at the back so that these are essentially your traditional buttons and these can certainly be used as such!  Or you can also add them to hairbands – all you need to do is thread the elastic (doubled up) into the loop, and then knot it over itself.  Simple!  And if you use the metal fastening on the elastic at the back of the button you will have a secure tie and the metal won’t show.  See pictures below for a guide:


The best fabrics to use are thinner ones, cottons and linens are ideal.  Look at Japanese fabrics for beautiful designs that are little enough to use on a button, or the tiny patterns available in dollshouse shops, or use just a little detail from a bigger pattern fabric. 

If you want to be totally original, consider printing your own fabric – I usually use heat-transfer paper (for printing on t-shirts) for my own designs.  

Most of the above buttons use vintage images from my collection which I have printed onto heat transfer paper, and bonded to thin fabric.  Or if you wanted to do this on a slightly bigger scale, consider using a fabric-printing company who will print short-runs of fabric for you to your design.

The use of fabric lends a wonderful handcrafted feel to your jewellery, whether classy or cutesy, it’s very pretty indeed!

Friday, 23 September 2011

New Postage Rates to Europe

Great news for European customers!  We have tweaked our website so customers in Europe now pay less for their postage!

The standard cost to Europe is reduced to £3 for the first item (though some heavy items such as ModPodge will be £5), and each subsequent item is now £0.25 (£0.50 for heavy items).   Orders with purchased upgrades will be sent by registered & trackable delivery.

Countries included within Europe are as defined by Royal Mail here:

Postage within the UK stays at £2.50 for all orders, regardless of size.

And postage to the rest of the world remains unchanged at £5 for the first item (£7 for heavy items) and £0.50 (£0.70) for each subsequent item.  Orders with purchased upgrades will be sent by registered and trackable delivery.

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

New! Scrabble Tiles ...well, not quite

Finally back in the shop, beautiful wooden tiles for all your handmade jewellery. Equally as useful for making pendants, earrings or ring toppers, these are really gorgeus and easy to use.  Just Modpodge a (sealed) image to the reverse of the tile, and when dry, coat with a layer of glaze.  Done!

Actually... they are not Scrabble - I have been asking the Scrabble licence owners for some time now for their permission to supply their gamepieces (that is Mattel in the UK) to the jewellery making world, and the outcome is that they do not allow their tiles to be sold for purposes other than the game.  I think it is important to note this especially if you intend to sell your jewellery.

So we have been on the hunt for a good alternative for a long time, and having kissed many frogs, we have now found our wooden tile prince!  In all respects these tiles are just like those in the famous game: smooth and tactile, flat at the back and nicely finished, so they will be perfect for all your wooden tile jewellery.

They measure 18.5 x 20.5mm, and will suit any of our bails.  And - uhhh - just to make our crafting lives that little bit easier, matching epoxy stickers will be here soon!  :D

Friday, 2 September 2011

100 Likers Freepost Offer

To celebrate reaching 100 likers on Facebook, we are offering Free UK Postage on all orders through the website up until midnight Sunday 4th, just use code "100LIKERS" at checkout.  International customers will receive a £2.50 discount on their order.  Stock up now for all your Christmas makes!

Visit our Facebook page @ Jasmin Studio Crafts.