Saturday, September 5, 2009

I Made Chandelier Earrings!

I made my very first pair of chandelier earrings! Well, my first pair of earrings ever, in fact. My friend Anna recently took a course at Country Beads in Vancouver and has been making tons of earrings ever since. This week, she was kind enough to teach me what she learned.

My inspiration for these earrings was a necklace of fresh water pearls and silver beads that my mother bought me in the middle east. I was looking for earrings to match it, but it's pretty unique. Here is a photo of the finished earrings and the inspirational necklace:

All the beads are glass - the "pearl" like beads are fake.

For anyone interested in learning the technique, there are tons of resources online, including the following:
I find it amazing the variety of earrings that can be made. The technique is fairly simple, but one place I saw it very accurately described as "fiddly and repetitive". It is very repetitive, but in one night you can have yourself a complete pair of earrings. From buying the beads, to learning how it's done, to finished earrings, I spent about $7 (my earrings were big with lots of beads), and 4 hours. This included bus travel to and from the bead store, and stopping for dinner, so roughly 2-3 hours of work for a beginner to make a large pair. Anna can apparently make a pair in about an hour.

Above is Anna working on her pair of earrings, and below is a close-up of me working on mine. I have discovered that I have all the tools necessary to make these beautiful earrings in my home already, but this is mostly due to the fact that my boyfriend is an electrical engineer, and has lots of tools to work with wire. I will likely be making more sometime in the future. I believe Anna said she spent about $15 on the tools at the bead shop.

This is a picture of the earrings Anna made. I love the mix of colours! Oh, and it was total coincidence that we wound up using the same findings. There are tons of different kinds out there.
And, because I want to show it off, this is the jewelry screen I made recently to hang it all on. There is a great Threadbanger video that shows how to do this, but I added an extra step. I stapled the mesh forward near the front of the frame, and then attached some fabric to the back so that my screen has a lovely background instead of just showing the wall behind it, and there is a space between the two so that I can still hang everything. I added drapery hooks to hang the necklaces. See the video here:
And, finally, an action shot of the earrings!

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