JEWELRY TUTORIAL: Faux Geodes

I recently joined the Craft Test Dummies team. Jenny sent me some Mod Melts and Mod Molds from Plaid, to test out, review, and make a project with. You can see my reviews for the Mod Melts and Mod Molds over at Craft Test Dummies, this week. As I was anxiously awaiting the products to arrive, I thought about how I could use them that was different than the other bloggers...something new to add to the "how to use them" information. One thing that stood out was embedding objects into them. I got out some flat back gems, glitter, and charms. I really think about the process, before starting any project. Since I had done a few basic tests with the 3 Mod Melt formulas, I knew that I couldn't embed an object that was so 3D, that the melt would surround it oddly when filling the mold. Something flatter like glitter, colored powders, luster dust, a milagros or clay slice would work. Of those, I only had glitter.

I had been thinking about geodes a lot, since our trips to the Smithsonian Natural History Museum, in early and late April.  I wanted to create some, but couldn't figure out how to do it with the materials I was familiar with. Then, Jenny told me she was sending me some of the Mod Melts and Mod Molds to play with. When I saw the Gems Mod Mold, the glitters and metallic Mod Melts, I knew what I could do. Follow the tutorial below to see how I used these to create faux geodes and created jewelry with them.


SUPPLIES:
To make the faux geodes, this is what you'll need. I used them to make jewelry, but you could use them for other projects.
  • Mod Melts in Metallic and Glitter - I used both silvers and golds, red and green glitter. You can experiment with the colors, sea glass, and milk glass Mod Melts too, but I haven't tried this technique with those
  • Gems Mod Mold - This is a silicone mold with various faceted gem shapes
  • High temp mini glue guns - I used one, but you can use multiple ones, if you are using different Mod Melts colors and formulas. I bought mine cheap from Michaels
  • Fine glitter - I used silver and black. You can experiment with other colors and mixing them
  • 1 Small spoon - For sprinkling the glitter into the molds. I used an old baby spoon
  • 1 Small paint brush - For gently moving the glitter around inside the molds and sealing the gems
  • Mod Podge Gloss - For sealing the glitter on the faux geodes
  • Small scissors - For trimming away excess Mod Melt, when the objects are done being made
  • Paper plates - To protect your work surface while sitting the hot glue gun down, working with the mold, and holding the finished pieces. Glitter is messy, so it's important to contain it as best as possible.
If you want to use your faux geodes for jewelry, like I did, this is what you will need:
  • E6000 glue - This is to glue the geodes to the vinyl, ring base, and earring posts
  • Ring bases - If you want to make the geodes into rings, you will need a ring base. I used a basic one, but there are fancier ones available
  • Earring posts - If you want to make stud style earrings, use large round earring posts. You can find these at craft stores or online craft supply companies (Etsy's supply section)
  • Clear vinyl/PVC - This is to back the geodes for a necklace. You won't need much
  • Scissors - To cut the vinyl. Small ones are handy for cutting the vinyl closely around the geodes
  • Chain, 4 jump rings, and a lobster clasp - For making the rest of the necklace
  • 2 Jewelry pliers - I use a two plier method to open and close my jump rings, since they are too small for my fingers to handle easily
  • 1 Wire cutter - I use a small pair for jewelry
  • Something small and sharp - To poke holes through the vinyl, so the jump rings can be easily inserted. A straight pin or something similar, will work perfect
  • Wax paper - To protect your work surface while handling the glue, and while the geodes are drying onto the vinyl
  • Something heavy - I used two novels to weigh down the vinyl geode necklaces while they dried
INSTRUCTIONS:

FOR THE FAUX GEODES

1) Plug your mini glue gun in. Put one of your chosen Mod Melts inside of the gun. I used the silver Mod Melts Metallic 1st. Sit the gun upright, on a paper plate. The Mod Melt need to heat up before using it.

2) Put the Gems Mod Mold on top of a plate, so the mold openings are showing.

3) With the small spoon, sprinkle some loose glitter into the center of each gem mold section that you want to use. Use the paint brush to push the glitter to the center. The thicker the mound of glitter, the deeper the faux geode will be. I used silver glitter for the gems made with silver metallic, silver, red (the large circle ring), and green glitter Mod Melts. I used black glitter for the gold and red glitter Mod Melts.

4) With the glue gun, carefully fill each gem mold section. Start in the center, to secure the glitter, working around the center out. I used the tip of the gun to push the melted Mod Melt against the sides of the gem mold section. This helps make sure the shape is defined. Fill the mold until it's even with the top of the mold. It will self settle a bit.

5) Let the gems set up until they are hard and cool to the touch. This can take 3-7 minutes, depending on the size of the gem. When the gem is hard, remove it from the mold. The silicone flexes well, and should release the gems without a problem. There will be some glitter left over in the mold, but all of the Mod Melt gem should come out in one piece.

6) Make several of gems, adding more Mod Melts to the gun and glitter to the molds, as needed. You can experiment with using different colors and thicknesses of glitter. I used fine glitter. You can try chunky glitter, micro beads, or any other ground sparkly material.

7) When you are done making the faux geodes, use the small scissors to trim away any excess Mod Melt from around the bottom.

8) Use the small paint brush to remove any loose glitter. There likely won't be much, as the Mod Melts grasp onto the glitter well.

9) Using the paint brush, apply a thin coat of Mod Podge gloss onto the faux geodes, to seal the glitter. Though the Mod Melts hold the glitter well, it's better to be safe than sorry. This doesn't noticeably affect the shine of the faux geodes, just seals the glitter. The faux geodes are already very shiny.

Here are all my finished faux geodes. You could stop here if you wanted to use them for something other than the kind of jewelry I made. However, if you like the jewelry I made, keep following the tutorial!


FOR THE NECKLACES

1) Chose the gems you want to use. If you find that you might need a few more than you originally made, take a few minutes to make those needed gems.

2) Figure out a good layout for your gems. I wanted a statement necklace. If you want something larger or smaller, this is the time to decide that. The lay out is up to you. You don't have to my layout, if you want something different. You do want it to curve, so it lays on your neckline nicely.


3) Lay your clear vinyl down on your work surface. Place your gems onto the vinyl, in your desired layout, to find out the best fit. You want to leave some space around your layout. You can see I altered my layout a bit, for a more secure necklace.

4) Working one gem at a time (I started in the center) squeeze an even layer of E6000 glue onto the back. Push it down onto the vinyl. Gently remove any excess glue from the vinyl, with a toothpick. Do this for each gem, until they are all placed where you need them to be.


5) Sandwich the necklace in between two pieces of wax paper. Lay the necklace down on a flat surface. Place the heavy book on top of the necklace, to keep it flat while drying.

6) After it has dried for a couple hours, use the small scissors to cut around the gems, leaving a 1/4" vinyl outline.

7) Using the straight pin, gently poke two holes where you need to place the jump rings. Wiggle the pin around to widen the hole.

8) Open one jump ring with your fingers or the pliers. Gently slip the jump ring through the small hole you made. Do this with another jump ring and hole too.

9) Slip the end link of the chain onto one open jump ring. Close that jump ring using the pliers.

10) Hold the necklace up to your neck, to figure out where you want it to lay. Place the chain across the back of your neck, till it meet the other jump ring. This is figure out how long to make the chain. Where the chain meets the other jump ring, pinch the chain there with your fingers. Remove the necklace from your neck, while still pinching the chain.

11) Using the wire cutters, cut through the chain where you are pinching it. Set the rest of the chain aside, as we'll only be working with the pieces intended for one necklace, from now on.

12) Fold the cut chain in half, so the loose end meets the attached end. Cut the chain at the half way point, to make two even sections of chain.

13) Slip one end of the loose section of chain to the other jump ring. Close the jump ring with the pliers.

14) For the closure, on one loose end of chain, add one jump ring. Close the jump ring with the pliers. On the other loose end of chain, add one jump ring and the ring of the lobster clasp. Close the jump ring with the pliers.

Repeat these steps as needed to create as many necklaces as desired. I made silver, gold, and red necklaces.




FOR THE EARRINGS

1) Chose two matching gems. They need to be the same colors and shape, not exact otherwise. This works best with the smaller gems. Make sure they are big enough for your earring posts to be hidden.

2) Apply a little E6000 to the back of one earring post.

3) Gently press the earring post onto the back of one gem. I put mine close the point.

4) Place the earring with the post up, to dry for a few hours, before wearing.

Repeat steps 2 and 4 for the other gem.

These are the two pairs I made.

FOR THE RING

1) Chose a gem. The size depends on how it will look on your hand, and how large your ring base is.

2) Add an even layer of E6000 to your ring base. My ring base has a circle section for gluing objects to. That is where I added the glue.

3) Gently press the ring base onto the back of your selected gem. I centered mine.

4) Sit the gem upside down, so the ring base is sticking up. Let dry for a few hours, before wearing.


You could use the same concept for bracelets, hair accessories, hard bags, tie tacks, cuff links, and any other stiff accessory. If fashion stuff isn't for you, add these gems to hard housewares, scrapbooks, artwork...any creative craft you desire. For a cool sciencey thing, you could glue several to a large piece of painted chipboard, make cute labels, and frame it in a shadowbox. Would be great for a kids room or for some funky home decor. Just a random thought. Happy Makery!

Disclosure: Products provided for review purposes. All opinions are based on my first-hand experience with the product.

Comments

  1. They look awesome!!!! So cool and glam. xoxoxox

    ReplyDelete

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