At Christmas time I had grand ideas about making homemade gifts for my children. But Christmas time came, and with it all the hullabaloo of the busy season, and my homemade gift ideas went by the way side. So I thought maybe for Easter I'd make a few homemade things for my children.
My first thing that I've gotten made is this necklace for Hallie. My friend Stephanie has a beautiful necklace charm with a black and white picture of her cute kids on the front and an S for Stephanie on the back. I thought I'd try to make a crafty Fancy Nancy version of this necklace for Hallie. Here's step-by-step what I came up with.
For the necklace I used a piece of craft wood roughly 1.5 inches X 2 inches. Then I took a picture of me and Hallie, turned it black and white, and re sized it on Photoshop to fit the wood. I then printed it out on regular old photocopy paper.
Once you get your image the size you want you need to cut it out to the size of your wood with an x-acto knife.
Then you need to paint your piece of wood. I originally painted this silver and then decided the silver looked a little odd so I painted it black instead.
So once you get your wood painted and your paper cut to size, you mod podge the paper to the wood. I have found that if you put your mod podge onto the wood, and then attach the paper onto the mod podged surface that your paper is less likely to bubble. Let that completely dry and put a coat of mod podge on the top of the paper as well.
For the back of the charm I decided to use cute craft paper instead of an initial, but the print that I decided upon was actually a note card, so whatever you use, just cut it out to size, and then mod podge the same way you did the front. Just make sure everything on the first side is completely dry before you do the second.
Once my mod podge was dry I went for a little of this stuff: Diamond Glaze. Oh how I love Diamond Glaze! This stuff is amazing, it will give a clear glass-like raised finish to any craft or jewel, and works really well. It is however frustratingly hard to find. I've yet to find it in an actual store, so I buy it online, and I've found that eBay has the best prices.
The best way I've found to apply the Diamond Glaze is to start on the edge of your piece and create a border all the way around, then continue into the middle of the piece going around and around until you've filled the whole piece. Work in a continuous stream and don't stop until you've filled the whole piece or you'll be more likely to get air bubbles. You may need to use your fingernail or a straight pin to remove any air bubbles, but don't be afraid, this stuff is a lot of fun. If you're worried just test it out on something else before using on your actual jewelry piece.
If you can't find Diamond Glaze or don't want to wait to order it online, the Triple Thick is a close second and can be bought at Hobby Lobby. Maybe other craft stores have it as well, but I know for sure they have it at Hobby Lobby.
So put your Diamond Glaze on and allow your piece to dry over night. Trust me on this, I've learned the hard way. Put the stuff on and walk away. Don't touch your piece! Or you'll regret it, and most likely have to start over (it happened to me).
Now you could stop here, but me, I like a little bling. So for Hallie's necklace I got some crystal rhinestones. These aren't cheap, but I thought for a jewelry piece they looked best. You can get these in bulk online, but I just bought some at JoAnn's. Then I used Gem-Tac to adhere the rhinestones to the charm. I have put rhinestones directly into the Diamond Glaze while it was still wet before, but they tend to slide around, so since I wanted a straight border this time I waited until the charm was completely dry and then just glued the rhinestones on with Gem-Tac.
When working with rhinestones I've found it's best to have a pair of craft tweezers. I got the Gem-Tac and these tweezers at MJ Trim online (they also sell rhinestones).
Then once your rhinestones have set and the glue is dry it's time to finish up the back. I put a coat of the Triple Thick onto the back of my piece. Let that dry, and then super glued a silver bail. I recently bought these cute heart bails (also on eBay) and was excited to get to use them. I think the necklace could be cute worn either way, front or back.
(To apply the bail to your charm you just need a little dab of super glue, but if you're like me and get a bit too much on and it gets onto the top of your bail remember that you can remove super glue with nail polish remover. So just put some nail polish remover onto a Q-tip, and clean the surface of the bail so it will be shiny and free of super glue.)
I decided that for myself this necklace was a little too much, but for Hallie I think it's cute. But I still wanted something for me (I'm a little selfish like that I guess) so I went for a key chain. I followed the same steps as the necklace, but put it onto a piece of wood that has a hole for a key chain. Note: the black and white picture printed off of my computer better (more crisp) than the color, but I still love this.
On the back of my key chain I wanted an N for Nancy, so I printed off a bunch of N's that I liked from the computer, chose the one I wanted, and cut it out with an x-acto knife. Then I modpodged it onto the back of my key chain, let that dry, then put a coat of Triple Thick on top. I decided I needed a little bling too though and put some cheaper rhinestones around the whole thing. But I thought it would be even cuter with a few beads, so I attached some of those as well.
So there you have it! If I can get my act together I have a few more craft ideas in mind that I want to make before Easter. I'm also hosting Easter dinner at my house again this year, so I'll be sure and show you some of my decorating and dessert ideas for that as well. Stay tuned!