How to Make Leverback Earrings featuring Swarovski Crystal Rivoli Stones

June 10, 2016
Rivoli Leverback Earrings 1

These eye-catching earrings have a lot going on visually, but really it takes just three jewelry parts and a little glue to make them.  And if you have never explored the use of glue in jewelry making, now is your chance.  Follow these steps to make a pair of sparkly earrings featuring Swarovski Crystal rivoli stones and glue-on leverback earring findings.


Swarovski crystal rivoli earrings and tassels; a jewelry-making tutorial from

It doesn’t take much to make these sparkly earrings; chain tassels, Swarovski crystal rivoli stones, and glue-on leverback earring findings. Oh, and a little 2-part epoxy.


You will need these supplies and tools:

Additional supplies:

  • cotton swab
  • acetone
  • disposable paper-plate work surface
  • tooth pick
  • styrofoam tray


How to glue Swarovski Crystal rivoli stones into a bezel setting

Prepare the jewelry parts for gluing. Use a cotton swab and a little acetone (the main ingredient in fingernail-polish remover) to clean the earring bezel settings and the crystal rivoli stones. The epoxy glue works best on clean surfaces.


How to glue Swarovski Crystal rivoli stones into a bezel setting

Use a piece of styrofoam to create a secure and level work surface for gluing the leverback earrings. I used a recycled styrofoam tray and poked holes to thread the earring clips through.


The perfect jewelry glue for crystals and metal findings.

Two-part epoxy glues are durable and safe for foil-back crystal; this makes them the perfect glue for use with Swarovski Crystal and glue-on metal findings. For more advice on jewelry glues and their uses, check out the Rings & Things free technique sheet, “Gluing Metal Findings 101“.


How to use jewelry glue- two part epoxy from Rings & Things.

To ensure the best results, be sure to read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Two-part epoxies consist of a resin and a hardener. Start by dispensing equal amounts of each onto a disposable work surface.


How to mix jewelry glue 2 part epoxy for gluing glass and metal.

Use a disposable mixing tool, such as a dry toothpick to thoroughly mix the two parts of the epoxy together.


Using two part epoxy glue to make handmade jewelry

Add a small dollop of mixed epoxy glue to the bezel. Using the right amount of glue is part guesswork and part experience; you need enough epoxy to coat the back of the rivoli, but not so much that it oozes out of the bezel. Add the rivoli to the bezel and press in place. If needed, a cotton swab and acetone can be used to clean up epoxy overflow.


Allow the epoxy to dry and cure in a warm dry location.

Now wait. It is best to place the project in a dry, warm location to cure. It takes just a few hours for the epoxy to dry, but several more for it to fully cure. This time frame will vary depending on the type of epoxy you use; be sure to check the manufacturer’s recommendation for cure time.


Rivoli Leverback Earrings are easy to assemble.

Once the epoxy has cured, it is time to assemble your earrings. Twist open the hanging loop on the chain tassel and add it to the U-shape base of the earring finding just behind the bezel. Twist the loop closed. Repeat to finish the second earring.


Free jewelry making tutorial for Swarovski rivoli earrings with tassels.

Eye catching and sparkling, your earrings are ready to enjoy.


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How to Turn Your Souvenir Pressed Pennies into Jewelry – DIY Earring Tutorial

May 26, 2016
It is easy to turn your souvenir pressed pennies into keepsake jewelry.

I’m not saying I choose my vacation destinations based solely on the locations of souvenir penny machines, but I am kind of hooked on these inexpensive keepsakes.  And yes, I have the Penny Collector app on my iPhone, making the location of penny-pressing machines around the world readily available.  But what is not to love–you basically get a keepsake charm (jewelry-making supply!) for less than a dollar.  Swoon!

Here is a jewelry-making project that might just make you a fan of pressed pennies!

Souvenir Pressed Penny Earrings made with suppies from

You can turn your souvenir pressed pennies into a pair of earrings with just a few supplies.


You will need the following supplies:


Use metalworking tools to turn souvenir pressed pennies into keepsake earrings C

Turn souvenir pressed pennies into charms with just a few metalworking tools. Turn the charms into earrings with basic jewelry tools.


You will need the following tools:


Souvenir Pressed Penny Earrings D

Use a metal file to shape the pressed penny, and remove any burrs from the edge.


Souvenir Pressed Penny Earrings mark the charm for hole position.

Measure and mark the pressed penny for the hanging-hole position, working around any embossed design. It is best to make the hole position between 1/16th and 1/8th inch from the edge.


Use a center punch to mark hole position prior to drilling or punching a hole in metal. Souvenir Pressed Penny Earrings

Place the penny on a steel bench block and use an automatic center punch to make an indent at the hanging hole mark. The indent is helpful for accurately guiding the hole punch.


How to punch a hole in a coin. How to punch a hole in a penny.

Punch a hole in the pressed penny using the two-hole punch. Line up the punch with the mark using the indent as a guide and turn the crank clockwise. Once the hole is punched, turn the crank counter-clockwise to release the penny. I used the smaller, 1/16th inch hole punch.


Souvenir Pressed Penny Earrings H

Holes punched and ready for finishing.


Use an oxicizing solution like Novacan Black Patina to antique your Souvenir Pressed Penny Earrings

You can choose to either leave your pressed-penny charms bright and shiny or antique them with an oxidizing solution. I chose to use Novacan Black Patina to darken the pennies, and then polish the high points; this finishing method enhances the embossed pattern and makes the design “pop”.


Clean the surface of your Souvenir Pressed Pennies prior to application of patina.

Begin by cleaning any oxidation or residue off the penny’s surface using a 3M sanding sponge. This will allow the patina to work quickly and evenly.


How to patina copper with Novacan black patina for Souvenir Pressed Penny Earrings

Use a cotton swab to apply Novacan Black Patina to the pressed pennies. Be sure to flip the pennies over and finish the backside too. Once the surface is darkened, rinse the pennies in water and dry them.


EuroTool ultra polishing pads from Rings & Things work great for poishing to a mirror finish for your Souvenir Pressed Penny Earrings

Use a 3M microfine sponge to remove the patina from the high points of the embossed pattern. Use an ultra polishing pad to polish the pressed pennies to a high shine.


Souvenir Pressed Penny Earrings DIY - penny jewelry; coin jewelry

The souvenir penny charms are all polished and ready to turn into keepsake earrings.


Souvenir Pressed Penny Earrings Make a Swarovski crystal link to adorn your earrings.

To make the beaded Swarovski Crystal links, begin by stringing beads onto each eye pin in this order: antiqued-copper bead, crystal briolette bead, and antiqued-copper bead.


Make a bead link to add sparkle to your earrings.

Cut off the excess length on the head pin; there should be about 5/8 inch of bare wire remaining, to bend into a loop with your bail-making pliers.


Souvenir Pressed Penny Earrings P

Use the smaller, 2.9mm bail-making rod to form a loop on the end of the eye pin. The loop should be perpendicular to the smaller eye pin loop. Grasp the eye pin “tail” and roll it around the bail-making rod. Use chain-nose pliers to finish forming the loop.


Add a bead link to your Souvenir Pressed Penny Earrings

Twist open the large loop on the crystal-bead link and attach the pressed-penny charm; twist the loop closed. Repeat with the second bead link and pressed penny.


Souvenir Pressed Penny Earrings R

Twist open the loop on the niobium ear wire and attach it to the smaller loop on the bead link. Twist the loop closed. Repeat with the second earring.


Souvenir Pressed Penny Earrings with French wire keepers for security

Add French wire keepers to the end of the ear wires. French wire keepers help keep earrings securely in place.


Souvenir Pressed Penny Earrings EXAMPLE 3

From pennies, to souvenir pressed pennies, to finished earrings!


Souvenir Pressed Penny Earrings A

Find a Souvenir Pressed Penny Machine on the Penny Collector Website:


And there is more!

Smashed Penny Souvenir Bracelet

If you love making souvenir pressed penny earrings, you will love Tiffany’s Souvenir Penny Bracelet, too!


Make things!


DIY Aromatherapy Tassel Bracelet Tutorial

April 28, 2016
DIY aromatherapy bracelet tutorial main image

Creating Birthstone Jewelry Family Tree Necklaces

April 8, 2016
Family Tree Necklace Cover

Personalized jewelry has always been popular and this “family tree” necklace with birthstone charms representing each member of the family is sure to please. Creating the tree pendant with the BIGkick embossing machine could not be easier and then its just a matter of attaching all the components; that makes this fun project perfect for both beginner and advanced jewelry makers.  This would make a great group activity to share with family or friends–making memories together while making a memorable piece of jewelry.


Mother's Day Birthstone Jewelry Family Tree Necklace made with embossed aluminum and Swarovski birthstone charms

Gather your supplies and tools. For supplies select your favorite shape of aluminum blank, jump rings, a necklace chain, and one crystal channel charm for each member in your family tree. For tools you will need the Vintaj BIGkick embossing machine, Vintaj DecoEmboss moonlit night die, flat-nose pliers, and chain-nose pliers.


Suggested Supplies


Suggested Tools


Peel the protective plastic sheet off the jewelry metal blank before using it.

A protective, blue-plastic sheet covers one side of the aluminum blank. Peel the plastic off and you are ready to run the blank through the BIGkick embossing machine.


How to use the Vintaj BIGkick DecoEmboss die to emboss metal.

Carefully position your aluminum blank in the open DecoEmboss die. Keep in mind the hanging hole position and the embossed image placement. Also place the blank so the blemish-free side of the blank will be the front side of your finished pendant.


Feed the embossing folder through the Sizzix BIGkick Embossing Tool.

Layer the DecoEmboss folder in the BIGkick machine in this order: platform, clear acrylic sheet, folder (this side down), and clear acrylic sheet. Then just turn the handle to easily feed the layers through the BIGkick machine.


Remove the tree embossed blank from the die folder.

Remove the embossing die from the machine and open it to reveal your embossed aluminum blank. Remove the blank from the die folder (you may need to gently flex the folder).


Embossed metal creates a positive and a negative design.

One of the cool things about the Vintaj embossing folders is they create two looks in one; a positive image on one side of the blank and a negative image on the other. You decide which side you like best.


Selecting the correct size jump ring for jewelry making.

Select jump rings to coordinate with your embossed tree pendant and crystal channel charms. I used an 8mm jump ring with the pendant and 6mm jump rings with the crystal charms.


Family Tree Necklace -- how to open and close jump rings

Add a 6mm jump ring to each crystal charm using a sideways twisting motion to open and close the jump rings. Use the same technique to add an 8mm jump ring to the embossed aluminum pendant.


Family Tree jewelry -- Make your mother a birthstone charm necklace.

Complete the necklace by stringing the components onto the necklace chain. For a balanced necklace, add half the crystal charms, then your embossed aluminum pendant, then the other half of the crystal charms.


Family Tree Necklace End

The finished necklace is charming!


How to package handmade jewelry.

Organza bags add a special touch to your handmade jewelry gifts without a lot of cost. And the bag can be used for safe storage of the piece of jewelry.


TierraCast Tree Pendants

If you aren’t quite ready to invest in the Vintaj BIGkick embossing machine, all is not lost. TierraCast makes a couple of cast pewter tree charms that would make perfectly charming substitutes; pictured are items #44-940-40-AS and #49-958-61-AS.  Or check out the entire TierraCast product line!


Make things!



Fairy Garden Terrarium Necklace Tutorial

March 27, 2016

Using a small corked glass dome, create a custom mini terrarium necklace!  DIY wearable cloche planters are very simple to make by following the steps in this tutorial.  This tiny fairy garden is made of moss, crystal points, and Swarovski crystal blossoms.  Personalize your wearable planter with anything you choose, as the basic assembly techniques will likely be similar., terrarium jewelry, plant jewelry, mini terrarium, wearable planters, DIY, tutorial, supplies, fairy garden, glass dome, living plant jewelry

Supplies available at and nature.  Gather materials and conceptualize a basic design!, terrarium jewelry, plant jewelry, mini terrarium, wearable planters, DIY, tutorial, supplies, fairy garden, glass dome, living plant jewelry

Using flat nose pliers, bend the edges of the filigree up to create a nice, decorative foundation for the corked terrarium baseGlue in place and allow to set., terrarium jewelry, plant jewelry, mini terrarium, wearable planters, DIY, tutorial, supplies, fairy garden, glass dome, living plant jewelry

Using a head pin, create a loop at the top of the cap for the cloche.  Gently re-form the cap to fit the top of the glass dome as needed.  Attach with glue and allow to set., terrarium jewelry, plant jewelry, mini terrarium, wearable planters, DIY, tutorial, supplies, fairy garden, glass dome, living plant jewelry

Wrap the crystal point with wire, secure ends into cork for stability.  Glue and allow to set, if needed, terrarium jewelry, plant jewelry, mini terrarium, wearable planters, DIY, tutorial, supplies, fairy garden, glass dome, living plant jewelry

Gather and wire wrap a small bundle of Swarovski crystal-end head pins to form a group of posies., terrarium jewelry, plant jewelry, mini terrarium, wearable planters, DIY, tutorial, supplies, fairy garden, glass dome, living plant jewelry

Poke the wire ends of the wrapped crystal and the Swarovski posies into the cork. Glue moss, branch and other natural elements into place and allow to set., terrarium jewelry, plant jewelry, mini terrarium, wearable planters, DIY, tutorial, supplies, fairy garden, glass dome, living plant jewelry

Carefully place glass cloche over your garden. Glue into place, using adhesive sparingly.  Allow to set., terrarium jewelry, plant jewelry, mini terrarium, wearable planters, DIY, tutorial, supplies, fairy garden, glass dome, living plant jewelry

Use a jump ring to attach chain for a necklace.  Or, not… you may choose to create without a bail or chain for a tiny tabletop decoration or desk adornment! You can also use smaller glass vials or glass bottle charms for a more petite version., terrarium jewelry, plant jewelry, mini terrarium, wearable planters, DIY, tutorial, supplies, fairy garden, glass dome, living plant jewelry

The following items can be used to make a small batch of plant jewelry:

We hope you enjoyed this step-by-step jewelry making tutorial.

Happy creating!

Rings & Things



DIY Make a Gemstone Points Necklace

March 18, 2016
DIY gemstone points necklace project

It is easy to create a unique necklace with tip-drilled gemstone  rectangles or points because no two stones are identical.  The stones can be wire wrapped, strung directly on cording, or strung on wire to make a bead-bar necklace.  So get your jewelry-making tools out and follow these directions to make your own one-of-a-kind necklace.


Rock crystal gemstone points from

A strand of gemstone flat point-shaped beads has a variety of sizes and shapes–perfect for creating unique, one-of-a-kind jewelry. Rings & Things offers several gemstone choices, like “rock crystal quartz” pictured here.


Gemstone Points Supplies

Just a few supplies are needed: 18-gauge wire; 4mm faceted metal beads; jump rings; lobster clasp; footage chain; and tip-drilled, irregular, graduated, rectangle gemstone beads.




Jewelry-making tools for wire working and necklace making from

Here are the tools you will need; flat-nose pliers, chain-nose pliers, nylon-jaw flat-nose pliers, semi-flush side cutters, wire straightener, and 1-Step Looper.




Other Supplies

  • Cotton swab


Making the pendant

Artistic Wire wire straightener works great.

Straighten your wire; the Artistic Wire wire straightener works great.


Gemstone Points Step 2

Use the 1-Step Looper pliers to bend an end loop in the wire. Begin by inserting the wire into the pliers jaw.


Hoe to make a wire loop with the 1-Step Looper.

With the wire in position in the 1-Step Looper, squeeze the handles of the pliers and (almost) magically the wire is cut and a loop is formed.



Tool Spotlight: BeadSmith 1-Step Looper Jewelry Pliers…NOW in three sizes

1-Step Loopers

The BeadSmith 1-Step Looper is the perfect tool for making loops. It trims and loops head and eye pins, as well as wire in one motion. And now it is available in three sizes, 1.5mm, 2.25mm, and 3.0mm.


Gemstone Points Step 4

Apply antiquing solution to the wire and then lightly polish the wire with a polishing cloth.


Make a gemstone points necklace with draping curb chain.

Select two (or three) gemstone points of varied length. Lay the stones side by side and drape a piece of chain from bead hole to bead hole (swag length should be longer than the gemstone points). Use semi-flush side cutters to cut the chain.


Use chain in a draped swag pattern.

Add a metal bead and drape the chain from bead hole to bead hole. Cut the chain to preferred length (length of swag should closely match length of gemstone points).


How to make a curb chain necklace with swagged chain and rock crystal points.

Add a second metal bead and drape the chain from bead hole to bead hole, make the swag slighter shorter than the previous one. Cut the chain.


How to cut curb chain sections to match.

Measure and cut chain sections to match the two metal-bead chain swags; these will be used on the opposite side of the gemstone points.


Assembing a swagged chain and gemstone points necklace.

String the shortest chain swag onto the handmade eye pin in this order: First chain link, metal bead, and last chain link.


How to make a antiqued brass gemstone necklace.

String the medium-sized chain swag onto the handmade eye pin in this order: First chain link, metal bead, and last chain link.


Gemstone Points Step 11

String the longest chain swag onto the handmade eye pin in this order: First chain link, gemstone flat point, gemstone flat point and last chain link.


How to make a bead bar necklace with the 1-Step Looping pliers.

Add the remaining two chain lengths/metal beads, starting with the medium-sized and then the shortest chain length. Use the 1-Step Looper to form an end loop and finish the bead bar pendant.


Finishing the Necklace

Gemstone Points Step 13

Layout the necessary components for finishing your necklace. You will need jump rings, necklace chain, and a clasp. Determine how long you want your finished necklace to be. This necklace works great as either a choker or a long necklace.


Gemstone Points Step 14

Use jump rings to attach the necklace chain to the pendant. Twist the jump ring open, add the pendant loop and the first link of the chain then twist the jump ring closed. Repeat on the other pendant loop.


Gemstone Points Step 15

Now finish the clasp portion of your necklace. Attach a jump ring and clasp to one side of necklace chain, and just a jump ring to the other side of necklace chain. Clasp the necklace together.


Gemstone Points Example 3

The necklace is finished and ready to wear!


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Stampable Bar and Bead Jewelry Project

March 9, 2016

Custom jewelry is always in style. And with Mothers Day around the corner it can be a great way to make personalized gifts. Impress Art came out with awesome stampable bars and metal beads and I just love the way they look! They really give you so many possibilities! See how easy they are to use below! Continue Reading…