A Project for a Beginner in Jewellery Making
I have loved the idea of making my own jewellery for quite some time but it is not something I ever pursued. I have a vast collection of hand-made pieces of jewellery; they have just been made by hands other than my own. I think I just never had any kind of ideas for my own designs. But recently I have wanted some steampunk jewellery but either I did not like what was available or it was too expensive for my budget. This is the first time I have felt inspired to create anything. I am a complete beginner though, so I do not even know the basics of jewellery making and with the steampunk designs I have in mind, I plan to do more than just string some beads together. So the first thing I had to do was get to grips with how to make jewellery. I will explain that more in another article for those that plan to do the same, but for the purposes of this post I am going to tell you about this Alice in Wonderland steampunk bracelet.
The Alice in Wonderland Kit
I was not looking for a jewellery kit, let alone an Alice in Wonderland themed one. I was actually ordering a load of charms, clasps and other pieces from this vendor on Amazon.co.uk and I saw this kit. It was very inexpensive and I thought it may be easier to make up a simple kit as my first venture into the world of jewellery making. Also, my sister has a birthday soon and she has been a big fan of Alice in Wonderland ever since she was a little girl, so I knew if this bracelet came out well, I could give it to her as a present.
The kit consists of 8 antique bronze charms, a glass red heart charm, a length of chain, links and a T-bar clasp. There is also a length of cord if you decide to make a necklace. I only wanted to make a bracelet, so did not use the cord. I love the charms shown in this image, so was eager to make up this bracelet. However, I did not receive the same charms as you can see from the picture I took of the finished bracelet. I have to confess I am quite possibly the worst photographer in the world. I just lack even the most rudimentary skills and do not have an eye for it, so apologies for that. The charms are a lovely antique bronze colour, and not the dirty gold that they appear as in my picture. They are also a good size and weight.
The bracelet does not come with any instructions, but as the main thing you have to do is to open and close the jump rings to connect the charms, it is simple enough, if a little fiddly. Luckily the tool kit I was using came with detailed instructions on how to do this and the best tools to use.
Better in the USA
I ordered my supplies and the bracelet kit from Amazon.co.uk, so while I was writing up this post I checked if it was available Amazon.com, but it is not. However I found this set of charms and I have to say I like it so much better! After all, who can resist those little ‘Drink Me’ bottles! While it is not an actual kit, I can really see myself incorporating these into other Alice in Wonderland themed pieces, not just jewellery! My favourite character is the Mad Hatter – some of these would great on the band of his hat, or on his cravat.
I think I may order something similar to this, or at the very least compile something similar. I may even add some of the charms to my sister’s bracelet, although I would have to make sure they were not too heavy for the chain. Most of the charms in this kit look like they can be connected with jump rings, but even the ones that do not have a pre-made hole, it looks like a metal loop could be attached quite easily ready for the jump ring.
Baby Steps into the World of Jewellery Making
The bracelet that I made was not very difficult to put together, but I do like it and I am certain my sister will too. But what this exercise has taught is that jewellery making is not just fun, but very doable! Also, even this simple kit has helped to give me more ideas to input more of my own creativity next time. I am already in the process of acquiring some old watches and lockets and I want to make some pieces with more of a Victorian feel next time.