Making handmade jewelry for someone is a unique and inspiring way to show you care. This “Healing Shrine” was created for a friend suffering from cancer. It was inspired by our new brass blank shapes and a recent trip to Santa Fe, NM.
Each year, thousands of people pilgrimage to El Santuario de Chimayo seeking blessings. Many visitors take a small amount of “holy dirt” from the site, in hopes of a miraculous cure for themselves or someone who could not make the trip. I chose to encase my “holy dirt” in a glass portal, that I nested inside a brass reliquary. Following are instructions for how-to create this DIY jewelry design using stacked brass layers and cold connections.
First, envision your shrine and decide how you want it to look and feel. Decide on contents for your glass bottle. Unscrew the top loop from the cork in the glass vial. Measure, mark and punch holes for rivets (using the small side of the hole punch).
Rivet the stamped metal band into place after double-checking that it will snugly hold the glass once it is assembled.
Insert tube rivets in holes between the front and back of shrine, stacking copper heishi trade beads between the layers (to fill the space and strengthen the connection between the top and bottom layers).
Rivet them into place. Note: Be careful, it is very difficult to reinstall the heishi spacer beads if they fall off the tubes!
Once the glue has cured, pop the glass vial inside the band. This DIY jewelry project can be a pendant, magnet or pin.