Beading / Jewelry

Gift Boutique: Ephemeral Beauty

By  Jennifer & Kitty O'Neil 

  • Ephemeral Beauty


  • Wooden craft circle, 1” to 2”
  • Silver-plated wire, 20-gauge
  • Silver-plated jump ring
  • Flat Back Rhinestones (Swarovski)
  • Pin back
  • Flea market items: old maps; watch faces; postage stamps; book pages; buttons; snaps; small springs; broken rhinestone necklaces; flat charms; plastic animal charms


  • Wire cutters
  • Pliers: round-nose; chain-nose
  • Jeweler’s bench block
  • Hammer
  • Hole punch pliers
  • Amazing Goop contact adhesive
  • 1. To make a background for your brooch, find an interesting section of a map and cut out a circle using the wooden craft circle as a template. Glue the map piece to the wooden craft circle with Amazing Goop.
  • 2. Use the wire cutters to snip off any metal pegs from the back of a large watch face. Glue a postage stamp to the watch face so it sits slightly off-center.
  • 3. Glue a button to the large watch face. If your button has a shank on the back, snip it off with the wire cutters. Center a flat charm on top of the button and glue it into place.
  • 4. Use the wire cutters to cut off any metal pegs from the back of a small watch face and glue it on the large watch face. Glue a rhinestone in the center of the small watch face.
  • 5. Using the hole punch pliers, punch a hole at the bottom of the large watch face (ours already had one). Take a snap apart and flatten the socket side of the snap using a hammer and a jeweler's bench block. Glue it over the hole you just made in the large watch face.
  • 6. Create a wrapped-loop link with the silver-plated wire by forming a simple loop with the round-nose pliers 1/2" from the end. Wrap the tail twice around the base of the loop. Trim the end with the wire cutters. Feed the straight end of the wire through the hole in the snap and large watch face. Then finish the link with a second wrapped loop.
  • 7. Open a jump ring with the chain-nose pliers, and use it to attach an animal charm to the bottom loop of the wrapped-loop link.
  • 8. Glue a small spring just below the snap on the large watch face. Scan a book page for a three-word phrase you like and cut it out, leaving 1" above and below the phrase. Roll the top and bottom edges of the clipping back like a scroll with the phrase facing out, then slide it into the spring.
  • 9. Glue the embellished watch face to the bottom center of the wooden craft circle.
  • 10. Wrap a broken rhinestone necklace around the edge of the brooch with the rhinestones facing up. Use the wire cutters to snip the necklace to fit, then glue it into place.
  • 11. Glue the pin back to the reverse side of the brooch a little above the center.
  • Hammer Time
  • 1. Don't have a jeweler's bench block? You can hammer on a brick instead.
  • Magic Touch
  • 1. To give your brooch a glossy finish, coat it with Lisa Pavelka's Magic Gloss. It's a pour-on resin that cures in the sunlight in just five minutes! (Remove the paper scroll from the spring first, so it doesn't get wet.)