Friday, December 17, 2010

Make Earrings from Grommets

Before: Washers from Grommet
Yesterday, we made a bracelet from brass grommets. The bracelet was so much fun to wear that we decided to make earrings using some of the still remaining grommet parts.

We used the large brass ring as the focal point to create dramatic earrings that swing as you wear them. We used the same style ear wire finding that we used in our earrings made from steel wire because we wanted the shape of the ear wire to echo the shape of the grommet. Same finding. Really different look.

Brass grommets
20-gauge round brass wire

After: Earrings by GeltDesigns
Nylon jaw plier
Wire rounder
Round nose pliers or wire looping pliers
Flush cutter or a side cutter 
Three step wire looping pliers or mandrel
Steel bench block
Rawhide or plastic mallet

Step 1
Check the two grommets to be sure there are no sharp edges. Use 220-grit wet/dry sandpaper to sand away any sharp edges, if needed.

Step 2
Make the chain. We used 20-gauge brass wire and then made "S" links using the tip of our pliers because we wanted to create a very fine chain. In the last link of the chain, we made one very small loop and one very large loop so we could attach the chain to the grommet.

Step 3
Make the ear wires. Use nylon jaw pliers to smooth out and harden the wire. Make a small loop at the end of the 20-gauge wire. Wrap the round wire around a mandrel. For these earrings we used an orange block we "borrowed" from the toy box. Cut the wire with flush cutters after you wrapped the wire completely around the block one time. Bend the blunt cut end of the wire so it is parallel to the loop.

Use a wire rounder or a flex shaft ( or pin vise) and cup burs to file the end of the ear wire smooth. Place the ear wire on a steel bench block and hammer the ear wire to harden the metal and prevent the finding from changing shape when used and worn.

We used 20-gauge round brass wire and a mandrel to create the ear wire in the same style we used and demonstrated how to make in earrings made from steel wire. The middle portion of wire looping pliers are also a good size to create ear wires. Copper or sterling 20-gauge wire can be used to create an interesting color contrast, but today we decided to stick with brass.

Step 4
Assemble the parts.

Step 5
Repeat to create second earring. 

Related Tutorials
Make Your Own "S" Chain
Make a Bracelet from Grommets
Make Earrings from Steel Wire
How to Make Your Own Wire Wrapping Tool Kit
How to Care for Your Wire Wrapping Tools
How to Straighten Wire
How to Smooth Sharp Edges on Wire
How to Measure Wire
How to Use a Wire Gauge

How to Make Your Own Silver Bangle Bracelet
How to Store Beads 
GeltDesigns Tutorials by Topics

Further Reading
"Making Designer Jewelry from Hardware, Gems, and Beads": Nicole Noelle Sherman; 2008.
"Hardwear: Jewelry from a Toolbox"; Hannah Rogge; 2006.
"Making Wire Jewelry: 60 Easy Projects in Silver, Copper & Brass"; Helen Clegg, Mary Larom; 1999.

TGIF. Enjoy your weekend. :)
Day 27. Week 4. Jewelry from Found Objects.  $ spent: 0
Found materials: Brass grommets
New Jewelry a Day.  

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