Friday, 9 November 2012

My Do's and dont's on How to make very small Dichroic glass cabochons for Stud Earrings

Here is my "how to" post on make very small Dichroic Glass Stud Earrings.
First things first, the reason:
I do quite a few craft fairs and we have a studio open five days a week and I have had parents ask if I can make very small stud earrings so there kids can wear them at school. It didn't take me long to have a go and this is my short story.
First, I cut long thin strips of dichroic glass on my home made glass cutting device. These are about 1/8" wide by about 4" long. This can be tricky and breaking glass so narrow is quite hard sometimes. But I carry on and cut a few of the strips from different dichroic sheets.
My home made glass cutting tool
The next task was to use this great tool I bought this year. It's a mosaic nibbler. It makes life so much easier :o) 
Mosaic Nibbler
I must mention the tile that the glass is placed on to fire MUST be coated with about five layers of kiln wash. If you don't do this the glass will stick to the tile and either the cabochon will break when removed or the tile will get damaged when removed. Either way not a good idea. So, don't cut corners and kiln wash the tile.
Cut dichroic glass ready for firing.
The tile is then placed in the kiln and temperature's are set for rampeing, holder and annealing.

Glass being fired, this is about 770 degrees C
Glass being fired, this is at full fusing temperature of 804 degrees C
Once the glass has fused and then annealed. It's left to reach room temperature. Here are the small cabochons once cooled and removed from the kiln.
Cooled cabochons straight from the kiln.
I had bought special solid silver stud earring posts for these stud earrings and set about gluing them on. It took ages and the only way to keep them upright was to place them in a bed of sand until dry.
Silver posts glued and drying in a bed of sand
Unfortunately, due to my stupid old brain. I had ordered the wrong earring post. The cabochons were just too big for these so after a few profanities I ordered slightly bigger posts and replaced these small ones for the bigger ones.
Leaving these to dry for at least 48 hours. I then presented them on my personalised backing card and here are the finished small stud earrings.

And that's about it, well apart from finding buyers and making more!
I love it when a plan comes together :o)

If you like to see more of my creations, click on the shop link at the top of this blog or click the Facebook link at the top of the blog. You will find jewellery ranging from cuff links to USB pendants. My stock is always changing to if you like my work why not add this page to your favourite list.

3 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Hi Hazel. I use E6000 see my blog about using it on hair clips at http://stevesmithsjewellery.blogspot.co.uk/2013/10/a-short-story-making-of-dichroic-glass.html
      Cheers, Steve

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