I’m Wired and Tipsy – Oh My

Img_1373As promised, we’re tipsy on Wednesday this week instead of Tuesday, and we’re going to figure out how to make our own jump rings. Beaders and jewelers out there know that jump rings help attach their pendants and charms to their chains. Paper crafters as industrious as us use jump rings to attach charms to ribbons, tags, just anything that will stay in place long enough to cooperate.

For this little card embellishment I created a charm by stamping the "happy" in the Polka Dots & Paisley stamp set on polyshrink using Staz-On ink. I punched it out with the key tag punch and used a 1/4" hole punch for the jump ring to go through. (Remember the hole will shrink too, so you have to make it at least 1/4" big.) I attached the charm to the jump ring and slid the ring through a heidi grace decorative pin, which I then attached to the soft subtle button and Sweet Shop stitched grosgrain ribbon.

So . . . now you’re at the edge of your seat wondering how you can make these rings, huh? Okay, no more suspense . . . here goes. But, please don’t use this technique for jewelry because it’s really not the "proper way," it’s just a fast and easy way to pull one out of your hat in a crunch. For more information about how a silver smith might advise you, click here

Img_1344_2Okay, gather your supplies which will be your needle nose pliers from your Stampin’ Up! tool kit, craft scissors, a set of flat-nose pliers, and wire. Stampin’ Up! wire works are great because you can choose from four metals (pewter, brass, silver, and copper) and three sizes (20, 22 and 26 gauge). Remember, the larger the gauge number the skinnier the wire. I used 22 gauge and it worked well.

First, hold the end of the wire up against one tip of the needle nose pliers with one hand and wrap the wire around the "nose" of the needle nose pliers with the other hand. You can use the flat-nose pliers to tightly pull the wire as your wrap. The closer to the end of the tip you wrap the wire, the smaller your ring will be; and the closer to the handle you wrap the wire, the bigger your ring will be. Try to wrap the wire very tightly and close together so your rings will be approximately the same size. Except for the first and last wrap, each wrap rotation will equate to a jump ring. So, the amount of rings you need will determine the number of times you need to wrap the wire.

You should have something that likes like this.

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Now gently remove the wire from the pliers so it looks like this below.

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Slide your coil of wire you created onto your craft scissors and cut the entire coil. Be very, very careful because the wires can fly across the room (or across your face). Be sure to point the scissors down.

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And, now, you have  . . . wahlah . . . custom jump rings. Was that easy or what!?

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Our stamp club meeting last Saturday was in honor of Stampin’ Up! retirees. Here’s the rest of the card my stamp club and I made with our charm/jump ring embellishment to bid the color Cool Caribbean adieu as well as the Polka Dot and Paisley ensemble.

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This card was inspired (okay, out right copied) by Debbie Olson’s beautiful card she posted in February in her blog, Thinking Inking, and it involves a creative fold called a joy fold. You can find the instructions for that fold here. It’s kind of hard to see, but here are a couple of pictures to illustrate how the card opens. The button holds the top part of the card in place.

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So, now we can enjoy being tipsy and wired together. I hope this sparked some ideas for you.

As a postscript, somehow my "Stamping Top 50" link stopped working and I had to recreate it. Ah me, I dropped from 120 to 270 something. That’s okay, right? It’s not a competition. Well, okay, maybe it’s just a little competition and I changed from hare back to tortoise. I also started played a little with the subscription feed system for you guys, hoping to make it easier for you. If I created any hiccups for you please just e-mail directly at lkmcclain2002@yahoo.com. Thanks for your patience, I’m trying to pretend that I’m a technical wiz, and you may be paying for it. Well . . . happy wired Wednesday!

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Sweet Comments

  1. Peggy Maier says:

    Now that’s a really neat idea. Thanks – I needed something new!

  2. Absolute PERFECTION! Everything about this card is so gorgeous!

  3. Great card and tip! So glad I found the link to your blog from Cindy’s.

  4. What a cute card! Love the fold in it and your wire tricks are so helpful! THANKS!

  5. Great card, and I love that little tag. There’s one more punch I’ve got to get!

  6. Connie Good says:

    Soooooooooo Elegant!!!!Thanks for sharing.

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