Sunday, August 22, 2010

Filigree and Gemstone Jewelry

I continue to be fascinated with the versatility of filigree in creating Victorian and vintage style jewelry.  Layering filigree can add such depth and visual interest to a piece of jewelry.  When combined with natural gemstones, the effect can be dramatic!

I purchased the gemstones used in the pieces shown below from Etsy shops:

The first necklace features a stunning green chalcedony round cabochon from Turkey (bought from BrownChalcedony.)  I used a layering technique by mounting the stone onto an antiqued silver setting and antiqued silver filigree for the back, allowing the edges to show around the edges from the front.  Necklace is beaded with natural gemstone and glass garnets, antiqued silver beads and chain.  Necklace length is 18 inches.

Green Chalcedony and Garnet Filigree Necklace
The second necklace uses a square green chalcedony cabochon (also from BrownChalcedony.) For this design I wrapped the stone in antiqued silver filigree then mounted it onto another piece of round filigree and embellished the front with a small Swarovski crystal "fire opal" rhinestone.  Necklace beaded with strands of antiqued silver links and filigree beads and small Czech glass crystals.  finished with delicate antiqued silver chain and lobster claw clasp closure.  Measures 16 1/2 inches.

Green Chalcedony Antiqued Silver Filigree Necklace - View 1

Green Chalcedony Antiqued Silver Filigree Necklace - View 2
The last necklace features a beautiful pink jade stone from CabbingRough.  This exquisite stone has hints of green mixed with the pink and rose colors.  I mounted the cabochon into an antiqued silver setting, then wrapped it with antiqued silver filigree to form a beautiful pendant.  Necklace beaded with Czech glass beads and anituqed silver bead caps.  Glass beads are combination of faceted pink rondelles with gold highlights and fluted round smokey gray in AB (aurora borealis) finish.  I made the beaded filigree drop with a aclear Swarovski crystal teardrop, then wrapped it in antiqued silver filigree.  Chain is delicate antiqued silver.  Finished with a lobster claw clasp.  Measures 18 1/2 inches, plus pendant drop of 2 inches.

Pink Jade and Antiqued Silver Filigree Necklace - View 1

Pink Jade and Antiqued Silver Filigree Necklace - View 2

Be sure to visit my Etsy shop to find more filigree Victorian and vintage style jewelry!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

How to Make Beaded Wine Glass Charms

Making your own wine glass charms is not hard at all.  Follow these instructions and you can design and create your own personalized wine glass charms in no time at all.

Materials:  Beads of your choice,, wire hoops (I use 25mm earring wire hoops which I purchased from Fire Mountain Gems - available in silver and gold-plating), and round nose pliers.  You will also need either small jump rings to attach the charm to the hoop - or headpins for converting a bead into a charm with its own loop using a wrapped loop technique.
Wire Hoop
1.  Choose your wire hoop.  This tutorial uses a 25mm gold-plated wire hoop.

Beading the Hoop
2.  Place beads and charm onto wire hoop.

Forming the Closure

3.  Now you need to form a closure for the hoop.  The wire hoop has one end with a loop and one straight end.  Working on the straight end, use your round nose pliers to bend the end up to make a 90 degree angle.

Finishing the Closure

4.  Some people stop with step 3 but I prefer to finish the closure by using my round nose pliers to bend the tip of the hoop backwards to form a u-shaped closure.  To do this, grasp the tip of the bent up portion of the hoop end and bend it backwards over the top of the pliers tip.

5.  Voila!  You now have a perfectly finished wine glass charm.  Now complete your set by making several more - you can choose to have four, six or even eight in a set.

Click here to see my collection of beaded wine charms on Flickr!

(This post uses information  from a blog post I  wrote for my Wordpress blog.)