Beading / Jewelry

Gift Boutique: Organic Chemistry

By  Jennifer & Kitty O'Neil 

  • Organic Chemistry


  • Flat faceted labradorite coin beads, 16mm, 4
  • Copper disc blanks (, 1” diameter, 24-gauge, three
  • PCB Etchant Solution* (RadioShack)
  • Liver of Sulphur*, 1 oz.
  • Tiled Quad Cube Rubber Stamp (Stampendous): Brocade Flourish
  • Copper wire, 20-gauge, 15” length
  • Antiqued copper toggle clasp, 15mm
  • FolkArt Enamels (Plaid), any color


  • Metal hole punch pliers, 1.25mm (to fit 14-gauge wire)
  • Wire cutters
  • Round-nose pliers
  • Flat-nose pliers
  • Pro-polish pads (or silver polish)
  • Nail polish remover and cotton balls
  • Glass jars with lids, four
  • Baking soda
  • Foam paintbrush
  • Double-stick tape
  • Wooden craft sticks
  • Large mixing bowl
  • Paper towels
  • Protective gloves
  • Safety glasses
  • Jumbo craft stick
  • *Handle these items with care and follow the manufacturer’s safety instructions. Please dispose of properly according to all applicable federal, state and local environmental regulations
  • 1. Clean the three copper discs with nail polish remover. To keep the discs from sticking to the rubber stamp, attach them to a piece of paper with double-stick tape. Dab the enamel paint onto the surface of the rubber stamp using the foam paintbrush. Carefully stamp each disc. The enamel paint is slippery and the stamp may slide. Don't fret. Just wash the disc off with soap and water, rub with nail polish remover and try again. When you are pleased with your designs, let the paint dry.
  • 2. Wear protective gloves. In a well-ventilated area, pour 1/2" of PCB Etchant Solution into a glass jar. Drop the stamped discs in and screw on the lid. Fill the mixing bowl 4" deep with hot tap water. Hold the jar in the bowl of water to warm the solution. Let the discs sit in the solution for 20 minutes. Agitate the jar periodically to swish the etchant over the discs.
  • 3. To remove the discs from the solution, slowly pour the etchant into a second jar. (Note: You can reuse the etchant solution on your next project.) Use two craft sticks as a strainer to keep the discs from falling into the second jar. Dump the discs into your gloved hand and rinse them under tap water. Dry the discs with a paper towel.
  • 4. Remove the enamel paint from the discs with nail polish remover, then wash the discs with soapy water. Continue to handle the discs with gloves to avoid getting any oily fingerprints on them before they go into the Liver of Sulphur.
  • 5. To antique the discs, microwave 1 cup of water in a glass for 2 minutes on high. Add a pea-sized lump of Liver of Sulphur to the hot water and stir with a clean craft stick. Drop the discs into the jar etched-side-up, making sure they are not touching. While the discs are in the Liver of Sulphur solution, mix 1 cup of warm water and 2 teaspoons of baking soda in a clean jar. Let the discs sit in the Liver of Sulphur solution until the discs are darkened. (Note: This could happen quickly or take up to 20 minutes depending on strength and warmth of solution.) Use gloved hands to reach into jar and retrieve the discs. Rinse the discs in the baking soda solution, then rinse with water.
  • 6. Using the Pro-polish pads, carefully buff the raised surfaces of the discs leaving the recessed, etched parts dark.
  • 7. To assemble the bracelet, start by punching a hole 2mm from the edge on either side of each disc using the metal hole punch pliers. Cut a 6" length from copper wire, feed it through the toggle clasp, then secure it with a wrapped loop. Slide a labradorite bead onto the wire, start to make another loop, slide a copper disc onto loop, then finish by wrapping the loop. Make sure the disc and toggle clasp are facing up. Continue in this way, connecting the labradorites and discs with wrapped loop wirework. Finished the bracelet off with the remaining toggle clasp end.
  • Size It Up
  • 1. The finished bracelet is 7-1/2" long, which is perfect for a medium-sized wrist. To make a smaller bracelet, substitute two 8mm labradorites in place of two of the larger ones. To make the bracelet larger, add an 8mm bead to each end between the clasp and labradorite. To determine your bracelet size, measure your wrist and add 1". In general, a small bracelet is 6-3/4", medium is 7" to 7-3/4" and large is 8".
  • Bracelet Basics
  • 1. To determine your bracelet size, measure your wrist and add 1". In general, a small bracelet is 6-3/4", medium is 7" to 7-3/4" and large is 8".
  • Econo-Tip
  • 1. Before you run out and buy a new stamp, take a look at your current collection. For this project, choose one with equal amounts of positive and negative space. Trace a copper disc onto a piece of paper and do some prototypes to find a design that works well. Where the ink is stamped, the design will be raised and shiny and the rest will be etched and antiqued.