Art Journal Page Inspiration (+ Tutorial): Circles

Art Journal Inspiration: Circles

Today I have a new art journal page to share with you.

In it, I combined my love of patterned scrapbook paper and my love of watercolors using  fun circles.

Usually my art journal pages have more of a story that I’m trying to tell or a feeling I’m trying to get out.  Today I just wanted to play with colors and shapes.

Make sure you check back tomorrow to see how this art page inspired some new jewelry!  (The jewelry was so fun to make that I made a necklace, earrings and a ring!  And I even created an eWorkshop to show you how to make them.  You can see the jewelry tomorrow and the eWorkshop will come out next week!)

Here’s the final page:

Art Journal Inspiration: Circles

I used some fun patterned paper and then matched the watercolors to the paper.

Here are the steps for creating this page:

Art Journal:  Circles

I used circle templates to make my circles.  These are from Simple Stories.

Art Journal:  Circles

First I drew different sizes of circles on my page.

Art Journal:  Circles

Art Journal:  Circles

Then I cut out circles the same sizes from patterned scrapbook paper.

Art Journal:  Circles

I used the circle templates to cut out the circles.

Art Journal:  Circles

I didn’t glue them down yet.

Art Journal:  Circles

I used watercolors to make circles around the circles I drew in different colors until the page was all filled up.

(Sorry I forgot to take a photo of the page with just the watercolors.  You can kind of see it in the next photo.)

Art Journal:  Circles

Next I glued the patterned paper circles down.

Art Journal Inspiration: Circles

That’s the final page!

Are you interested in art journaling?  I have a new eCourse that starts on Monday, February 15, 2016 that combines art journaling and jewelry making!

Inspired eCourse

Each week you get an art journal prompt and activity and lots of ideas and inspiration from my sample pages.  Then we’ll pull the inspiration from the art journal pages to make a map for designing jewelry.  Finally, you’ll make your jewelry piece.  I also give you a jewelry project tutorial each week for more inspiration.

Learn more about Inspired eCourse and sign up here.

Inspired

ECT TV Episode 58: Crimping Techniques

ECT TV Episode 58:  Crimping Techniques

Hi and welcome to Episode 58 of Emerging Creatively Tutorials TV (ECT TV)!

In today’s episode I’ll show you two different ways to crimp the end of a jewelry piece depending on what materials you have available.

Here’s today’s video episode:

ECT TV Episode 58:  Crimping Techniques

Step-by-Step Photo Instructions:

These are step-by-step photo instructions of the exact same tutorial that’s in the video.

ECT TV Episode 58:  Crimping Techniques

Technique #1:  No Wire Guards

Tools:

  • Crimp tool
  • Wire cutters

Whichever technique you’ll use you need these tools.

For the first technique, here are the materials:

  • Crimp beads
  • Crimp bead covers (optional)
  • A strung jewelry piece
  • Clasp

I’m just show you how to complete your jewelry piece, but you can just string a simple necklace or bracelet.

Step #1

ECT TV Episode 58:  Crimping Techniques

At the end of your jewelry piece string a crimp bead, another bead and an additional crimp bead.

Note:  I use two crimp beads on each end of beaded jewelry pieces.  You can just just one if you prefer.  I suggest using two if your beads are particularly heavy however.

Tip on beads:  If your beads’ holes are larger than the crimp beads and the crimp beads slide inside them I suggest that you instead use beads with smaller holes next to the crimp beads.

Step #2

ECT TV Episode 58:  Crimping Techniques

Next slide half the clasp on.

Note:  This technique works great with toggle clasp or any clasp that has a loop that is soldered closed.  If you’re using a lobster clasp with jump rings on the other side, I recommend using wire guards (the next technique) instead because the wire will tend to slip right through the jump rings.

Step #3

ECT TV Episode 58:  Crimping Techniques

Now take the beading wire back around and through the crimp bead, bead, crimp bead and a couple of additional beads in the jewelry piece.

Pull the beading wire snugly.

Tip:  You want to pull everything snugly, but not tight.  Allow some room so the jewelry piece can move.

Step #4

ECT TV Episode 58:  Crimping Techniques

Now we’ll crimp the beads.  I’ll show these steps without the jewelry piece so you can see more clearly; however, you will be doing these steps on the crimp beads that are on your jewelry piece.

ECT TV Episode 58: Crimping Techniques

The crimp tool has two notches.  Use the one that’s closest to the handle to squash the crimp bead and close it.  It has a little notch in the bottom that creates a crease in the middle of the crimp bead.

ECT TV Episode 58:  Crimping Techniques

See how there’s kind of a crease in the middle?

ECT TV Episode 58:  Crimping Techniques

Now position the crimp bead in the notch closest to the tip of the tool.  You’ll want it to be up and down and you’ll close the tool so that the crimp bead folds in half.

(In the photo the bead isn’t quite up and down.)

ECT TV Episode 58:  Crimping Techniques

Repeat for both crimp beads.  Check to make sure you closed them properly by pulling on the beading wire and making sure everything is secure.

Step #5

ECT TV Episode 58:  Crimping Techniques

Crimp bead covers are optional in that they don’t provide any more structure to your jewelry piece.  However, they do make it look more finished.

ECT TV Episode 58:  Crimping Techniques

I use the notch nearest the tip to place and close my crimp bead covers.  Just place it over the crimp bead and close it.  It should look like a bead when it’s closed.

ECT TV Episode 58:  Crimping Techniques

Step #6

ECT TV Episode 58: Crimping Techniques

Trim off any excess wire as close as you can to the bead.

Repeat for the other side and you’re done!

Technique #2:  With Wire Guards

Same tools and materials as above except additionally you’ll need a wire guard for each end of your jewelry piece.

You can use any kind of clasp you like and you can add it after you complete crimping the end using jump rings.

Step #1

ECT TV Episode 58:  Crimping Techniques

This technique starts out the same as the first one.  Add a crimp bead, a bead and a second crimp bead.

Step #2

ECT TV Episode 58:  Crimping Techniques

Next we’ll add a wire guard.  As you can see, it looks like a horseshoe or a U.  It has two tubes on the end and the bend is open on the top.

ECT TV Episode 58:  Crimping Techniques

Slide the wire up through one of the tubes.

ECT TV Episode 58:  Crimping Techniques

Then around and back down through the other tube.

ECT TV Episode 58:  Crimping Techniques

Then bring the wire back down through the crimp bead, bead, crimp bead and another bead or two in the jewelry piece.

In my necklace the string would not fit back through the hole in the black bead, so I will have to carefully trim it close to the crimp bead at the end.

Step #3

Follow Step #4 from Technique #1 to close the crimp beads and Step #5 to add crimp bead covers.

Step #4

ECT TV Episode 58:  Crimping Techniques

Now you can add your clasp using jump rings.

Beaded Bunch Necklace

If you’re interested in learning how to make the Beaded Bunch Necklace I mentioned in the video, click here for the Beaded Bunch Necklace eWorkshop.

Inspired

Inspired eCourse starts on February 15th! 

What is Inspired eCourse?  It’s an Art Journaling/Jewelry Making class.  I’ll give you a prompt and activity for your art journal.  You’ll make an art journal page (or pages).  Then I’ll show you how to pull inspiration out of your art journal page and interpret it into your jewelry designs.

It’s 4 weeks plus an introduction week.  And it’s so much fun and inspiration!

And you get jewelry supplies for one project in class!  (Kits will be sent out during the first two weeks of class.  It’s for the final week.)

Learn more about it and sign up here.  There’s even a super handy payment plan available.  (Payment plan will not be available after February 15th.)

ECT TV Episode 57: Beaded Earrings with Wire Wrapped Knot

ECT TV Episode 57

Hi and welcome to a new episode of Emerging Creatively Tutorials TV (ECT TV)!

Today I’ll show you how to make these sweet earrings with gemstones and a wire wrapped faux knot technique.

Here’s the video episode:

ECT TV Episode 57

Step-by-Step Photo Instructions:

These are step-by-step photo instructions of the exact same tutorial that’s in the video.

ECT TV Episode 57

Materials and Tools:

  • Gemstone chips (or two matching beads)
  • 20 gauge, half-hard, round wire, any metal
  • Wire cutters
  • Chain nose pliers
  • Ruler
  • Sharpie or other round pen to bend the wire around
  • Jewelry file or wire rounder

Note:  I’ll show you how to make one earring and then you can just repeat the steps for the second earring.  I suggest doing each step to each earring along the way.

Step #1

ECT TV Episode 57

Cut 2 pieces of wire to 5″ each.

Flush cut the ends of the wire.  (Use the back or flat part of the wire cutters toward the part you are cutting.)

Step #2

ECT TV Episode 57

Bend the wire about 2″ from the end.

Step #3

ECT TV Episode 57

Pinch the bend closed with chain nose pliers or I like to use a crimp tool.

Step #4

ECT TV Episode 57

ECT TV Episode 57

ECT TV Episode 57

Hold the bend in chain nose pliers and bend up the shorter wire.

Step #5

ECT TV Episode 57

ECT TV Episode 57

Wrap the wire around making a fake knot.  You can be as messy or neat as you like.

Step #6

ECT TV Episode 57

Trim off any excess wire with wire cutters, making a flush cut.

Step #7

ECT TV Episode 57

Use your chain nose pliers to make sure the end is not sticking out.

Step #8

ECT TV Episode 57

Slide on 7 gemstone chip beads or whatever beads you’d like.  (Just make sure that the beads aren’t too heavy for your ears.

Step #9

ECT TV Episode 57

You should have both earrings down up to this step before continuing.

Make sure they’re the same length and trim if you need to.

Make a bend in the wire wrapping both earrings around a sharpie or other marker.  Place the marker as close to the beads as you can when wrapping the wire around.

Step #10

ECT TV Episode 57

Use your chain nose pliers to make a little bend in the end of the wire.

ECT TV Episode 57

Step #11

ECT TV Episode 57

Use a wire rounder or jewelry file to round the end of the wire.

ECT TV Episode 57

And those are the completed earrings!

ECT TV Episode 57

ECT TV Episode 57

If you like this tutorial, you’ll love my Knotted Link Bracelet eWorkshop.  You get a video tutorial, PDF and an access page to find everything easily.  It’s similar to an ECT TV episode.

Learn more about the Knotted Link Bracelet eWorkshop here.

Knotted Link Bracelet eWorkshop

My newsletter subscribers get these ECT TV episodes in PDF form right in their inbox!  Sign up for my newsletter and get my FREE 14 day Introduction to Jewelry Making eCourse and future episodes of ECT TV in PDF form right in your inbox!

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3 Ways to Use Knotted Links in Jewelry Making

3 Ways to Use Knotted Links

I’m loving these knotted links and have made a few bracelets with them.  (Of course, you can use any of these ideas to make necklaces as well!)

knotted link bracelet

In my Knotted Link Bracelet eWorkshop I show you how to make these knotted links and how to make a bracelet with them.  But you can also use these links in other ways, too!

I have 3 fun ways you can use the skills you learn in the Knotted Link Bracelet eWorkshop.

Knotted Link Bracelet eWorkshop

#1  Make a chain of knotted links to make a bracelet or necklace.

This is exactly what I teach you in the Knotted Link Bracelet eWorkshop.

Knotted Link Bracelet

#2  Use the links as an element in a bracelet.

In this case I used the knotted links and wire wrapped bead links to make this bracelet.

Knotted Link Bracelet

#3  Use as a strand in a multiple strand bracelet or necklace.

I used three strands:  a knotted link strand, a strand of wire wrapped bead links and a chain.  Then I attached them all with a jump ring and added a clasp.

Ready to learn how to make a knotted link?  Check out my Knotted Link Bracelet eWorkshop and you’ll be making jewelry like this in no time!

Knotted Link Bracelet eWorkshop

Where to Get Tools for Making Jewelry

Where to get tools for making jewelry

I often get different jewelry making questions.  (Feel free to contact me to ask me a question!)

Today I got this question:

“I’d like to know where I can find jewelry making tools.”

Answer:

If you’re just getting started making jewelry, first think about the budget you have to spend on tools.  What tools you can start with really vary based on the amount of money you can/want to spend.

When you are just very first getting started it probably makes sense to not spend a ton of money on tools unless you’re really sure it’s something you’re going to keep doing.  Jewelry making tools can get really expensive.  You don’t have to start out buying expensive tools right away.

On top of that, sometimes you don’t really know what tools you’ll use the most.  There are different tools for different types of jewelry making and you’ll probably find that there are certain tools you’ll use the most.

After you’ve been making jewelry for a little while and figure out which tools you’ll actually use the most you can upgrade those tools to the nicer, more expensive versions.

For example, when I first started making wire jewelry I got a beginner set of pliers and wire cutters.  As I’ve learned which tools I use the most (and frankly, as I’ve worn them out) I’ve replaced those specific tools with better quality tools.

(Once you have quality tools they will last you a long time!)

3 Basic Wire Wrapping Tools

If you’re making a lot of wire jewelry, I recommend these 3 basic tools that you’ll use over and over again:  wire cutters, round nose pliers and chain nose pliers.

I also have an article I wrote about making jewelry on a shoestring budget that gives you options for switching out tools for items you may have around your house.

Having said that, I’m going to give you a bunch of options and hopefully at least one of them will work for you.

Where to get tools for making jewelry

Where to get tools for making jewelry:

1.  Your toolbox.

When I got started to begin with I found tools in my dad’s toolbox that worked for some things.

This is not a long term solution if you’re going to be making a lot of jewelry, but if you’re just curious to get started it’s a start.

Steer clear of tools that are serrated or have teeth on them because they’ll leave marks on your wire.

2.  Barrow them.

If you’re just getting started, ask a friend to use hers.  Then you can find out what tools you’ll really use the most and then invest in those.

3.  Buy them at craft stores.

I quickly found that I needed tools not from my dad’s toolbox (see #1) and needed to get a set.  My first set came from A.C. Moore.

And better yet, you can use the coupons that stores like Michael’s, Joann’s or A.C. Moore have online to get 40% or more off a set of tools.  They also sell individual tools so you can pick and choose.

If you don’t have these stores nearby, you can check out their online stores as well and get the same deals most of the time.

4.  Jewelry supply stores.

I purchased the tools I use every day now at Rio Grande.  (I don’t see the set that I purchased on their website right now.)

Here are some options of jewelry supply stores:

Rio Grande

Fire Mountain Gems

Art Beads

Happy Mango Beads has a selection of inexpensive tools.

Basically anywhere you find jewelry making supplies like beads, that store will probably also sell tools.

5.  Amazon

And, of course, like everything else, you can find tools for making jewelry on Amazon.

{That’s an affiliate link for Amazon.  If you make a purchase, I get a tiny percentage of it.  You won’t pay more for using it!}

You can also find them in places like garage sales or sometimes on Craigslist or eBay someone will be selling a lot of jewelry making supplies that they’re no longer using and you can get a good deal on tools.

Have a question for me?  Contact me here.

If you’re just getting started making jewelry, I have a FREE 14 day eCourse that’s an introduction to jewelry making (kind of heavy on wire wrapping because that’s my favorite!)

Get your Free 14 Day eCourse by filling out this form!

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