Being a big fan of upcycling and recycling, I was very enthused about Helen Harle's new book just from the title.
If you think the only thing you can make from soda cans is crocheted purses and hats, you'll be surprised by the gorgeous jewelry she demonstrates how to make in this book.
The introduction to the book explains the tools and techniques you'll be using to create the jewelry. How to cut and flatten the can and how to connect pieces together with rivets and with epoxy.
Then you get into the projects. They are really gorgeous. They are all made with supplies that are fairly easy to find at any good craft store and they aren't very expensive supplies. The time it takes to make a finished piece is minimal.
The projects start with delicate hanging blossom earrings, and get more complex as the book goes on. The techniques and methods used are inspiring.
My favorite projects include the Tiny Blossom Brooch which uses beads with flowers and leaves made from aluminum cans on a sieve type brooch finding to make a pretty little brooch which reminds me strongly of some of the costume jewelry my grandmother had. The same technique could be used to make a forget-me-not ring or even shoe clips or clip on earrings. The simple daffodil hair pins remind me of the paper daffodils I made in school. My favorite project is the roses that are very realistic and just a lovely addition both to jewelry and to other crafts. I could see these on the cover of a scrapbook or larger ones glued to a paper mache box.
The book is mostly flowers, but the technique uses craft punches to create shapes so you don't need any drawing skills and no more cutting skills then it takes to cut open the can. The methods of turning, bending, and folding the shapes creates lovely realistic flowers. If you paint your cans with a good paint for metals, nobody would even guess this is upcycled jewelry. The finished pieces are fun, floral and remind me strongly of vintage costume jewelry.
The book inspired me to make Christmas ornaments using bottle caps and aluminum can shapes, and there are a bunch of other ideas I want to try.
You can get this book directly from Kalmbach Publishing Co. or by clicking below from Amazon.com.
Kalmbach Publishing Co. provided this review copy of Create Colorful Aluminum Jewelry to me free of charge.
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