Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Recycled Sunflower Champagne cork earrings tutorial

As I’m getting ready to post this tutorial it is snowing. Even so it is closer and closer to spring so why not make something bright and cheery in honor of the upcoming season?  These recycled sunflower champagne cork earrings are so easy to create when you follow the step-by-step instructions.  They are sure to start a conversation wherever you go so why not make a pair or two today?

You will need:

Champagne corks

X-acto or craft knife

Glass from an old picture frame for cutting the corks on

Heavy corrugated cardboard and waxed paper to cover your work surface

Small paintbrush 

Acrylic paint- (I used Martha Stuart Satin) Chamomile, Pollen, Jonquil, Chestnut brown, and black

Gloss acrylic finish

Ultra Fine point sharpie marker

Fine sandpaper

Drill with small bit

Awl or nail

Green E-sized seed beads

Tacky glue

2 inch head pins

Fish hook ear wires

Round nosed pliers

1.     Working on a protected surface (glass from old picture frame) and using a craft knife, carefully cut the top portion  (at the neck area) off the cork.  Cork is very easy to cut if you use a rocking motion with the craft knife while pushing downward.  Repeat with a second cork.  You will have two discs.

2.     Rub both sides of the corks on a piece of fine sandpaper to smooth. Use the sandpaper to sand off any writing on the top of the cork since you will be painting on it.

3.     Place the disc on its side on heavy cardboard and drill a hole all the way through it.  Use an awl or nail to widen the hole if necessary.

4.     Working on the front of the disc use a sharpie marker to make a largish circle in the center.  Make leaves around the circle shape with pointed tips.  This will be your painting guide.  (See photo) Don't worry about being perfect, flowers aren't perfect either  :-)

5.     Fill in the petals with the Chamomile color.  While the paint is still wet, add some strokes of the pollen color.  Continue until you have painted all the petals.  Let dry.

6.     Fill in the center of the flower with chestnut brown.  While it is still wet make small dots with black paint all around the edges of the center.  Make the edges jagged and even overlap on the petals slightly. (See photo)  Continue adding black in a smaller circle in the center of the brown circle.  Let dry. 

7.     Add teeny dots of jonquil to the center circle of the flower.  Let dry.

8.     Use some black paint thinned with water and a tiny brush to outline the petals and add a few lines to the base of the petals.  (See photo) When all the paint has dried, brush on some gloss acrylic finish to protect the flower. You may want to turn it over and paint a sunflower on the other side as well.  

9.     Thread a green E bead on a 2-inch head pin and insert in the bottom of the hole you made in the cork till it comes out the opposite end.  Dab a tiny dot of glue at the base where the head pin exits and thread another E bead on the protruding head pin. (The glue will help to hold the bead stationary) Add a fishhook ear wire making sure it is facing the correct direction, and then use the round nosed pliers along to bend the wire to the left and then curl around to the base to close the loop.  (See photo)


Thanks for your lovely comments!