Ever bought a plain jewelry finding and don’t know what to do with it?
From rubber-stamping, mixed-media techniques to resin, use your creativity to add an extra touch to a finding. We provide these low-tech options that don’t need specialized metalsmithing materials. Read on to find out more.
- Decorate with wire, ribbon, beads, and more. Add style to a simple clasp or other finding to make it an important part of the design. Begin with a simple wire wrapping technique without using beads. You can use a cord or a ribbon and finish with a knot or embellish with a few more ribbons to add flare.
- Got any thin metals? Use a metal hole punch to add holes. This will turn any charm into a two-hole connector or chandelier drop. The hole has a functional purpose like wrapping two solid pieces together or turning an object into a charm. It can also serve as a decorative piece –punch holes on a bead cap so the holes will look like polka-dot designs.
- Break or Cut. You need not worry about accidentally breaking a thin filigree. In fact, you can actually break a filigree on purpose! To create smaller shapes from a larger piece, bend the filigree back and forth repeatedly until it breaks. Use flat-nose pliers to bend the piece and wear thin gloves to protect you from cuts. You can cut metals using shears from hardware stores as an alternative.
- Hammer and Metal Stamp. Using a texturing hammer or the round end of an ordinary ball-peen hammer, hammer your metal for added texture. This lets you add messages and symbols to your design. From smooth to bumpy, notice how changing the surface has a completely different feel.
- If you have a finding that is flat or curved, use pliers (bail-making or flat nose) to unbend the rings or bead caps and use them as flat connectors. You can also bend pieces of filigree and turn them into clasps and bails. To create a simple bracelet connector, curve a long piece of metal as this will add a little pizzazz to your ordinary design.
If you want to give your beaded jewelry designs a fresh look, the tips above will help you customize your ordinary findings to make gorgeous jewelry creations. Now you can add an extra look to your findings without soldering, sawing, metalsmithing or torching.