Monday, March 11, 2013

DIY single flame cuff

Well, it took a few days to get decent light to photograph this, but here we go! You can refer back to this post where I broke down the cost of materials. In addition to the leather, brass bracelet blank, and crystal that I bought, I needed super glue and a metal file to make this bracelet.
step one: use a metal file to soften any rough or sharp edges on your bracelet blank. Take your time; it'll be worth it to be comfortable!
step two: affix the crystal to the bracelet. I placed the crystal on the bracelet a few times to figure out where the two surfaces met. Then I removed the crystal, and ran a thin line of glue along the bracelet blank where the stone would touch it. I placed the crystal on the blank and let it stand for a few minutes (at least) to adhere. I did this project in steps; after each step, I'd set the bracelet aside for a few hours, to let everything really cure.
step three: begin the wrap! (Yes, I could have trimmed my leather down so that it was only half as wide and the end result would look more like the original, but I was a little too excited to sit still and cut my leather in half. I wanted to get started!) Set your bracelet crystal-side-down. Add a thin line/bead of superglue to the back of the stone, and gently press the leather into it. Hold for about 30 seconds, making sure you do not get any of the superglue on your skin, because it is much easier for the leather to adhere to your skin than to the stone! After about 30 seconds, you can release the pressure, but again, walk away for a few minutes (or hours) to let it cure. Only adhere one piece of leather at a time, so you can focus and not rush.
Step four: now it's time to begin wrapping around the side and top of the crystal. You'll need something to gently push the leather into the crevice between the bracelet blank and the stone. I used the back corner of my file. Put a drop of superglue in the crevice, and gently push the leather in. Keep applying gentle pressure for at least 30 seconds (longer if necessary), until it adheres and doesn't come off when you release the pressure. Do the other side and let stand to cure for a few hours.
Step five: begin to wrap over the stone. Before I put any glue on the leather, I wrapped it around the stone and used the handle of my file to press the leather into the crevice between crystal and bracelet on the other side of the stone. A few gentle presses left a little bend/mark in the leather. I applied a little bit of glue along the back side of the leather just up to this mark, and then wrapped the leather around the stone and held it in place for maybe a minute or so to adhere, then left it to cure. (In the picture above right, the piece of leather on the right shows how I left things at this step - you can see the crimp where I marked the leather for the next step, but I have only just affixed the leather across the stone. Slow and easy wins the race here.
Step six: tuck the leather into the crevice at the base of the stone, just as you did in step four. in the picture above right, the piece of leather on the left shows how this looks. Work only one piece of leather at a time and let the bracelet rest to cure for several hours.
 Step seven: flip the bracelet over. Run a line of glue across the back of the bracelet. Lay your leather over this line, crossing diagonally over the first wrap. Press to secure, then let stand to dry.
Keep repeating steps 4-7 until you are satisfied.When you are done, affix leather to the underside of the crystal and snip off any remainder.

 voila! It's done! Pennies on the dollar - and so chic!

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