I made these faux pocketwatch charms for a steampunk swap. Can you guess what I made these pendants out of? I'll give you a hint: I got some of my supplies in the office supply store, and some of them in the hardware store. I didn't want to buy readymade "steampunk" parts and pieces at the craft store, so I worked with what I had on hand, and a couple of generic jewelry-making supplies. Okay, did you figure it out? I used metal washers (hardware store), and rhinestone brads (office supply), as well as jump rings and a link from an oversized copper chain.
Now, if you're not sure what steampunk is, or how to evoke it in your creations, Beading Daily had some good info on capturing steampunk:
One of the differences between steampunk- and vintage-style is the more mechanical aspect of steampunk elements, using pieces which once functioned rather than which were purely decorative. The exception would be fantasy charms and references, especially winged creatures such as angels and birds, which are characteristic of the Victorian times in general...
Try giving your own work this look with some of these other objects popularly considered to evoke a steampunk era:
- Civil War-era military trim
- Military buttons and buckles
- Leather straps
- Insignia, such as medals of honor
- Nautical symbols of the time period
- Fantasy charms, especially winged creatures: birds, angels, and fairies
- Old interesting keys and locks
- Watch parts and watch faces
- Gears, wheels, and cogs
- Fancy hinges, hardware, and mechanical bits circa 1900s
- Typewriter keys or printing press-type pieces
- Old monocle and eyeglasses lenses
- Chain with links, especially brass, steel, and gold colored
- Scientific ephemera: pieces of machinery, lab gizmos, glass vials, etc.
So now that you are more familiar with steampunk, I'll tell you how I made my steampunk pocketwatch charm.
- 1 metal washer (package of 25 for about $2), $.10
- 2 rhinestone brads (package of 100 for about $3), $.06
- 1 link from a copper chain (strand for about $2), $.10
- 2 jump rings, (package for $2), $.10
- E6000 glue, on hand
Total: about $.36 per charmalso used a metal stamping kit to mark the washers with numbers to suggest a clock face (you can get these at Harbor Freight), a permanent marker to antique the metal stamping, and a dollar store chain and jump ring to turn it into a necklace. I used needle-nosed pliers to help me open and close the chain link and jump rings. I intentionally mixed metal colors because I thought it added to the steampunk feel.
This applies to all my projects: please substitute whatever materials you have on hand to make this project your own. I encourage improvisation.
1. If desired, stamp numbers on washer with your metal stamping kit. Alternately, decorate the metal washer with decoupage, or inks that can be stamped onto metal. Otherwise, move on to step 2. (My example washer here was test-stamped, so ignore the stamping pattern on it.)
2. Glue small jump ring around the center hole of the washer with E6000 glue. Allow it to dry a bit for a few minutes (it will take 24 hours to completely dry and cure, but you can assemble the rest of the charm before then!)
3. Remove one link from the oversized copper chain. I used needle-nosed pliers and a bit of force to open my link (it wasn't designed to be easily disassembled). Straighten link out and make as flat as possible. Glue to outside of metal washer.
4. Put rhinestone brad through back of metal washer and bend prongs out on front of charm to suggest watch hands. You don't need to glue the brad or anything.
5. Put large jump ring between prongs of second brad (note: make sure the jump ring is larger than the rhinestone brad head, so the ring can move freely), pull it all the way to the head of the brad. Use needle-nosed pliers to clamp prongs together tightly, if necessary.
6. Glue brad/jump ring combo to back of washer (make sure it lines up with the "12" on the clock if you have one).
7. Here's the back view and the front view. (I put copper rings on the back of my prototype, but I like it better without the additional copper ring on the back). Antique with antiquing medium or slightly watered-down acrylic paint, if desired. Let it cure for 24 hours before wearing. Mount onto chain with an additional jump ring (to make sure the pendant lies flat with the chain).
Uh oh, someone's crashed my photo shoot!
Ha ha ha! I have found the treasure!
I used dollar store wedding favor tins to make steampunky-boxes to put the charms in. I cut out 2" circles from some parchment-looking scrapbooking paper, and then used the Cricut to cut a shape that looks like a gear out of brown cardstock. I rubbed a little metallic copper paint on the gear shape to give it a little shine. I glued the gear to the circle.
To insert them into the tin, I took out the plastic insert, glued a tiny bit of hot glue around the edge, inserted the plastic insert and the circle into the tin. Then I glued around the edge of the paper with a little more hot glue to seal it into the tin.
And, just for a little more steampunk inspiration, here are the charms I received in the swap:
Altered Scrabble Tile by aprilagain
Steampunk Swallow by Doxie24_7
Elegant Steampunk by Krafty_Karusu
Steampunk Games by Lady Lovecraft
Find a ton more steampunk charms at Craftstersource=http://dollarstorecrafts.com