Saturday, May 23, 2009

Bootheel Summer Earrings...

One of my latest discoveries is the online beading store, Auntie's Beads.  I'm completely charmed with their story and family involvement, and learned that the founder, Susie Henderson, grew up in the "Bootheel" of Missouri, where I spent many summers growing up and still have family to this day.  To find out more about Susie and the rest of the Auntie's Beads team, CLICK HERE.

I decided to give them a whirl and wasn't disappointed.  I loved how dedicated they were to customer service and were willing to answer any question I threw at them.  I created the above earrings from materials found on Auntie's Beads and headpins that I made myself.  I think they are fun, funky, full of movement and light, and perfect for summer fun!

Bootheel Summer Earrings

57" Fine Silver 24 gauge Round Wire

Butane Torch

1.  Cut 36 fine silver 1.5" lengths of 24 gauge round wire.  Using a butane torch, create 36 balled headpins.  Whenever using anything with heat or flame, use extreme caution!  Set aside.  (If you don't know how or want to save time, purchase balled headpins already made from Etsy sellers like prolifique.)

2.  Cut 2 sterling silver 0.5" lengths of cable chain (3 links each).  Using 1.5" silver wire, create a simple wire-wrapped loop, attaching it to the end of one length of chain.  String 1 Swarovski ball, and create another simple wire-wrapped loop, attaching to the French Earwire, effectively creating a wire-wrapped link.  Repeat for second earring.

3.  Each link of chain will have six wire-wrapped Swarovski rondelle dangles, three on each side.  On the first side the pattern will be:  1 mint alabaster rondelle, 1 light rose rondelle, 1 mint alabaster rondelle.  For the other side, the pattern will be: 1 light rose rondelle, 1 mint alabaster rondelle, 1 light rose rondelle.  Repeat twice for the remaining two links.  Repeat entire step for the second earring.

Customize:  To make these earrings more seasonally appropriate for other times of year, switch up the color palette and patina the wire with liver of sulfur to give your wirework more detail, depth, and interest.


Tammy said...

Love these, especially the sparky ball at the top!

Andrew Thornton said...

Thanks Tammy! I think they're really fun! I think what I like best about them is that half the crystals are opaque and the other really reflects and absorbs light. Makes for some really interesting cast shadows.

Cynthia Thornton said...

These are really pretty! I think i'll make a pair!