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Third Time’s a Charm – Jewelry Making with the Kiddo

jewelry making copper pipe pendant necklaces rings bracelets

It. Finally. Happened. I made some new jewelry! I hope you weren’t holding your breath this whole time… Everything was laid out – beads, copper pipe sections, cord, glue – EVERYTHING. I *thought* about playing around and making some new pendants. I thought reeeeaaaalllly hard. 

Then I put it all away because it was just SITTING THERE. 

The cleaning struggle is real…

A short while later I went on a reorganization spree that hit every room in the house. All of my art supplies are now neatly tucked away in plastic boxes! Yay!So I pulled out my boxes of jewelry making supplies and put them *back* on the table. Then I thought about making some new pendants. I thought about it EVEN HARDER that time. I legit took some stuff out and fit things together and contemplated the universe in a noncommittal way – then put it all away.

‘Nuff said.

Not too long after that Mixer made its rounds in the media for all the reasons we don’t need to discuss here and I decided to check it out. After poking around the creative section I noticed a few things: 

  1. It’s a lot less crowded than Twitch
  2. Most of creators are digital artists
  3. I’ve seen zero other people making jewelry on Mixer (although that could just be a timing thing)

That night I casually asked my son if he would be interested in making some jewelry with me and streaming it. Of course he was all about it and wanted to get started that very instant and maybe play some Minecraft after or some Geometry Dash and we should get Super Mario Maker 2 and… Anyway, getting my mini-me in on the crafting fun meant less screen time for him and more accountability for me. Win-win!

You really should check out chibird. 🙂

For the *third* time I pulled out my jewelry making supplies, but this time I set up the camera, mic, and lights. After some test recording and even a *GASP* test pendant – away we went! We streamed for a few hours and I got a few new pendants done while helping my super enthusiastic kiddo make two necklaces, two rings, and two bracelets. 

My awesome friend also popped in and watched *the whole stream*, which was really cool and above and beyond. You don’t find a pal like that very often. She mentioned coming over to watch IRL, but crafts aren’t a spectator sport in my house! MUAHAHAHAHA!!

Anyway, here’s the stuff we made. The boy especially loves showing off his bling! <3

Jewelry making necklaces pendants bracelets and rings
One necklace was a gift and we didn’t get a pic of it.

I don’t know why I didn’t think to take pictures along the way. I guess I went full n00b even though it technically wasn’t my first stream. For some reason our stream was flipped when we went live, even though it looked fine in OBS. Of course I didn’t realize it until the end. 

We all have our moments…

On top of that, the table was a MESS. Short of anything to do with resin, I had just about everything I use for jewelry making on that table “just in case”. It wasn’t all in frame, but there was a lot of reaching and confusion and switching seats – exactly how it would have been without the camera. 🙂

I ended up taking down the stream recording because my precious little one is still learning about what to say/not say online – especially live. At some point I’ll take highlights from the stream and post a video. We’re definitely going to be streaming more and it won’t just be jewelry. Drawing, painting, games and whatever else we can think of will be part of the createm0de channel! 

What would you like to see us make? Come find us on Mixer!

Thanks for reading! Until next time!

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Bookbinding Doesn’t Take that Long

Well, it shouldn’t, but it did for me and not for the reasons you might think. I started my handmade sketchbook adventure back in January when I decided that I wanted one with all different types of paper in it. That’s not something you can zip over to the art store and buy (why not??), so I took it as an opportunity to make something really personal. I thought I did that last year when I converted an old (and meaningful) art book into a journal, but after a year of filling it up it still isn’t quite what I want. 

What Happened?

So I started the book months ago with plans for three types of paper (drawing, multimedia, and watercolor) and a cover made from my son’s old jeans that were too holy to donate. Of course, it all had to be filmed so I could make a video out of it! Everything was all set up – lights, camera, computer, and bookbinding supplies took over my dining room table. During the first session I cut all of the paper to size and gently creased and stacked it into signatures of one of each type of paper. 

And there it all sat. The whole time I wondered what it was, why I wouldn’t just sit down and work on it. It’s pretty obvious now though, right? It was that extra step of making the video. Rather that just sit down and put all the effort into making the book, the video was what really had priority. My excuse was what a pain it would be to get set up and get going even though most of what I needed was left out. And because of that dinners at the table didn’t happen for months. Family crafting didn’t get done at the table. There was an eyesore in the middle of my house! 

Last week I finally took the camera set up down and put the bookbinding project away in its own special box. Guess what happened? We ate some food at the table and did some projects together. Then I finished the book – in two days. Mistakes were made, but I feel like since they’re baked into the book already that there’s no point in worrying too much about what goes into it. That first page of a sketchbook is always the toughest!

How I Made the Book

The tutorial I followed can be found below. It’s really easy to adapt your own measurements and I found the whole process to be very relaxing, except for the very end where I realized the cover was too big and I already put glue down. I snapped a few pics along the way, because it still needed to be documented, so rather than make you read more of my rambles, let’s go on a little photo journey together!

A pretty stack of signatures ready to be sewn!
This is a beautified version of what my table looked like for MONTHS, except without holes punched in the signatures. How long did it take to measure and punch those holes? Maybe 10 minutes. At least I was able to get any bitterness about it over with right away. 🙂
The signatures all stitched and ready for glue.
I thought sewing the signatures together would be tedious, but it was very relaxing! It was kind of my favorite part. <3
Signatures glued and clamped.
I have no control over where glue goes. It’s a miracle that none of it got on the pages! That’s a paint stirrer cut in half and two-inch clamps to keep it all together.
Signatures glued, clamped, and drying.
I set them out to dry like this. I forget why. Maybe to make sure they dried evenly? It must have worked because they did. 🙂
The cover pieces all laid out.
The cover is made out of my son’s old jeans and chipboard.

The Result!

There aren’t any pics of the fiasco that was gluing all the things together, but this is how it looks now. I sewed denim strips on and left the edges out so it would fray over time and have a nice distressed look. Plus it’s kind of relaxing picking at the little strings as they come loose. I finished it off with a patch from Alex Pardee. 🙂
At the end of the day, bookbinding is fun!

The tutorial I used:

If you don’t know him, now you know him. You’re welcome. 🙂

Thanks for reading! Until next time!

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Copper Pipe and Impressed Blanks

jewelry making craft copper pipe metal stamping impressart

It’s time to take some poorly stamped blanks and make slightly better looking copper pipe pendants out of them! Are you ready? If you don’t remember the whole ordeal that was my first experience with metal stamping, you can find that here. TL;DR – if there wasn’t such a thing as a “rage pendant” before, it exists now because I made one. 

Setting aside the dramatic process of rage jewelry making, sometimes things work out beautifully! It just so happens that those little blanks are the PERFECT size to dangle inside a slice of copper pipe. 

jewelry making craft copper pipe metal stamping impressart
Why does my mat look so dirty? 🙁

I started out with the Tree of Life piece since it came out the closest to some sort of reasonably good usable impressed upon metal. What do you call a stamped blank anyway? Is there a word for it? Or is it just a stamped blank and that’s it? Well the tree was kinda good and I like the design, so I snipped a bit (too much) of black wire. I thought it would look good with the design, and it does, but there’s one problem with black craft wire. It is SO easy to get tool marks on it and then you’re left with very noticeable copper spots. It also makes me wonder how long the black will last on the wire, but this was an experiment, so perfection was not necessary. I kept the natural curve of the wire after the loop to go with the design. 

jewelry making craft copper pipe metal stamping impressart
It wouldn’t focus!

I took a slice of copper pipe with a hole drilled in it and threaded the wire through. A quick loop and a wrap later and it became a pendant! I like how this wrap looks, but it doesn’t prevent the pipe from spinning around the blank. I think that might be okay (like a “feature”) for some pieces, but in this case I’m not wild about it. 

jewelry making craft copper pipe metal stamping impressart
Pliers make a great prop for stubborn jewelry that won’t sit still.

Round two! This time I wanted to fix the spinny pipe problem, so I started this piece the same way as the first, but finished the wrap a little differently. I gave it a little “tail” to bend down over the back of the pipe. At first I tried to bend the wire on itself to give it a more finished look and to keep it from having a cut wire sitting against the wearer. The only problem is that it rarely ever occurs to me to measure things when it comes to wire wrapping. No big deal, right? Eyeballing it is totally fine! 

jewelry making craft copper pipe metal stamping impressart
Measuring is for chumps!

Eyeballing it did not work this time around and my tail was waaaaay too long. Since you can’t really unbend a wire that’s bent in half (well, you CAN, but it will most likely break), I had no choice but to cut it. By the way, eyeballing it totally worked that time and that tail did its job. No more spinny pipe pendant!

jewelry making craft copper pipe metal stamping impressart
Ok, maybe measuring can be helpful… (*grumble grumble*)


jewelry making craft copper pipe metal stamping impressart
Mission accomplished!

Are you ready for the finale? The rage piece got a little extra experimentation. Instead of drilling a hole for the wire, I decided to wrap the blank onto the pipe. That way it saves me from drilling a hole and the pipe won’t spin. It’s also because I thought I drilled three pieces of pipe, but apparently only did two. Oops!

jewelry making craft copper pipe metal stamping impressart
The question now is: leather or chain?

It might need a little tweaking, but it’s not too bad! The wrap also gives the rage stamps the subtle air of suffocating angst. (Was that too much?) This might be the one I wear myself! 

All in all these were a lot of fun to make! If I can get my stamping technique on point this could be a whole other line for my shop. 

jewelry making craft copper pipe metal stamping impressart
But what do I call them??

There will definitely be more of these coming with more precision and less frustration! If you have an idea that you want me to try, let me know in the comments below or find me on Twitter. 

Thanks for reading! Until next time!