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How to Make Distressed-Look Metal & Wire Earrings

Learn how to make distressed-look metal and wire earrings with this Howcast video about how to make jewelry.


Hi, I'm Tam. I'm going to show you how to make a very simple pair of earrings by texturizing a ready-made oval disc that you can just buy at any beading store. So this is what it's going to look like. When we buy it it looks like this, but after you texturize it and sand it, it's going to look nice like this, so basically that's the difference.

So this basically has a hammered edge and then it's matte finish. All we need here is the disc. This is a 3M fine grit paper. This is an anvil, and this is our texturizing hammer. Basically, you want to put your sandpaper flat, and then you're going to take your disc and I would look at it to see if there was a better side. Already, I would say this one is the better side.

Then you're just going to make sure that this is flat, so that you get an even finish on it. I like to sandpaper in a figure-eight pattern, because that means you're hitting the whole piece flatly, because sometimes, where you put your fingers is where you put a lot of pressure. So that means if you were just doing this, then that means the two spots where you have your fingers would file down faster than the rest of the piece.

So basically, I just like to just do it gently in a sort of figure-eight motion, that way you are going to get an even finish. See how nice that is? So this is the finished, and this was the unfinished side. And then I'm going to put the disc on here and then I'm going to... Whenever you hammer a piece of metal you want to wear safety glasses, because it could just slip and pop and hit you in the face. Like something like this could totally cut your face by slicing it.

So here we go. So we're going to just - I want to do this sort of - you can hammer the whole thing, but I sort of like the just the hammered on the edges, because it gives you a high-low like that. So you're just going to gently hammer, and move the disc around. So you can see what the hammered side looks like compared to the non-hammered side.

And then I'm going to continue all the way around. So hammering is about like layering the hammer, so you want to do one complete way around and then you're going to look at it, and figure out if you'd like more hammered. I think I'm going to move it. I think this one is a little deeper into the piece, so I'm just going to move it.

And this other hammer is called the ball-peen hammer and this is flat, so it's not going to make the same texture. The ball-peen is going to make more of a texturized effect on a flat piece of metal. So I'm just also going to hammer all the way around.

While working on it, some of the oils from my fingers is transferred onto the brass, so I'm just going to gently sandpaper it again and try not to touch it. Then I'm going to put it onto the ear wire, close the loop and there you go.

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