The first day back from Kindergarten in 2005 and my son had both pockets filled with gravel.
Instead of running around for his precious 15 minutes of freedom, he got lost in picking out "special" rocks to bring home to his mama.
This gesture touched me deeply, I sat down with him and asked him to tell me what he liked about each rock. He said things like "It's brown like chocolate." or "It has a circle in it".
I have kept these rocks he collected so carefully to this day.
It reminds me there is beauty in even the plainest of rocks. True, some of them you have to look at through the eyes of a child to see that but it is there, each rock has its special quality, just like us humans!
A few drilled rocks from Stone Me caught my eye, not for their rarity or their gem like quality but because they were plain. Plainly beautiful! Putting them into bracelets served 2 purposes; 1 - they brought back memories of rock collecting with my son and 2 - they look AWESOME with patina-ted chain.
The bracelets were simple to build; center the double drilled rock on the bead board at 6".
Insert 8mm jump rings into both drilled holes.
Open the last link in a 4" piece of patina chain and close it over either side of the rock.
Bring the other side around to the opposite side of the rock and open, then close the last link onto the jump ring. You now have a closed bracelet that you can add beads and clasps too, alternating where you place them, either next to the drilled rock or at the back of the bracelet, in the middle of the 4" chain piece.
Double the chain with less expensive antiqued copper, or add a strand of pearls next to it.
As your piece grows longer, just take out the extra links or chain, adding them to the clasp as an extender or a charm dangle.
I used czech glass from artbellasurplus as embellishments, the Picasso finish complimented the rustic patina and the rock textures really well.
You can also use the left over chain bits to create complimenting earrings.
Half of this collection is at Jewelry Affaire, with hopes that it will be shown in their Summer issue. The other half sold out at a shop within 4 weeks so feel free to make as many rock bracelets as you can with this simple technique! Buyers seem to like them.
And for all of you who think my uber special spectacular patina chain is too expensive, the parts for each bracelet, including the chain come to under $20, with a low retail price of $45 for each bracelet and an average of $20 for each pair of earrings, you've made your money back and then some.