Making an Artisan Pendant
Making an Artisan Pendant
Our artisan pendants are made with domed optical glass that is created to fit into chic custom frames. This project is quick, fun and easy to customize!
Begin with one of our pendant sets, which include the glass dome, pendant and adhesive dot. We currently offer sets that are square (shown) or oval. In addition, you’ll need an image. You can use anything that is water safe: magazine images, laser photocopies, most scrapbook papers or fabrics. (Please DO NOT use desk jet copies or photography paper. If you want an image from one of these sources, take it to Kinko’s and have it laser photocopied.) Make sure the image is sized for your pendant.
We use Fantastic Glaze & Glue with our Artisan Pendants. This is THE BEST glue for this kind of project for so many reasons! It is water based, so it cleans up easily with water. If you mess up, you can just wash the image off your glass and try again. Fantastic Glaze is acid free, so it won’t damage your images over time. It’s guaranteed to dry perfectly clear and will never yellow. It begins to set up in about 15 seconds, so your projects can proceed quickly. It’s non-toxic, so you can use it with children. (We wouldn’t recommend drinking it, though, because it doesn’t taste very good!) A single 2 ounce bottle of glue will make around 300 pendants, so it’s a good buy.
Turn your optical glass dome over, so the flat side is facing up. Put a puddle of glue in the center of the glass and a smaller dot on each of the four corners.
Turn your optical glass right side up (dome side up) and place it directly over your image. Press down firmly, so any excess glue squishes out the sides. Make sure the glue completely covers the image and that there are no air bubbles. (If there are empty spaces or bubbles, push down more firmly and wiggle the pendant a little to spread the glue around.)
The glue will begin to set up in about 15 seconds, so get the glass where you want it and then LEAVE IT ALONE! Resist the urge to micro-adjust the glass, or you might accidentally tear your image. If your glass is wanting to float around, press down more firmly. There’s too much glue in there! Next time, make your glue puddles a bit smaller.
Let the pendant sit for a few minutes. I usually start making my next pendant in this period. Or go get a diet Coke. I really like diet Coke. Once the glue has set up a bit more, I’m ready to proceed. I like to clean up any wet glue around the edges with a wet Q-Tip. This is great if you got any glue on the optical glass, as well. Remember, the glue is water based, so it cleans up really easily. Then I use regular scissors to trim away the excess paper from the image. We’ve found that angling the scissors a bit to undercut the image works very well.
Once the image is fully trimmed, it will look like this. I often need to clean the pendant up again after this step, as wet glue sometimes transfers from the scissors to the glass. I then clean up my scissors with a little water and a paper towel. Again, very easy.
Our pendant sets include adhesive dots, which are very strong double sided adhesive film usually used by jewelers. Peel the dot off the paper backing…
And place it in the center of your pendant.
Then peel the red film off the adhesive dot, revealing the second sticky surface.
Place the glass right into the pendant. It will stick firmly to that adhesive dot.
Your gorgeous finished pendant will look like this!
If you are at all concerned about getting your pendant wet, you can add an additional protective step. (I recommend this for bracelets or for images that are precious to you, like laser copies of family photos.) After you trim your image around the edges of your optical glass, use a small paintbrush to add a thin coating of glue to the back of the image and allow it to dry overnight. Then proceed with your adhesive dot for a VERY durable piece!
Have fun, and happy gluing!