Creating with Cabochons Challenge REVEAL !
September 17, 2013
The multi-talented Sally Russick, of
The Studio Sublime, threw down the gauntlet about 6 weeks ago.
Anyone care to join her in designing jewelry with those sometimes
tricky ‘hole-less’ wonders known as cabochons??
I thought I would love to try some more techniques.
First realization was that there is a huge variety of cab materials…stones, of course.
But also metal, poly clay, glass, shell, resin, plastic…you get the idea.
If the piece doesn’t have holes and you can figure out a way
to wrangle it into your jewelry design, then it must be a cabochon.
Next ‘aha’ was all the ways one could ‘attach’ the cab to the design.
There’s glue, wire wrap, beaded bezel, metal bezels,
and tab or prong setting. And maybe more.
I decided to try out a few of these, starting with good old hypo cement glue.
First up is a glass pebble cab I made with a piece of scrapbooking paper…
some kind of old postcard stamp design.
I call him “Artie” for his art deco look.
Glued the cab to a filigree component, then glued a ring of seed beads to add some pizzazz.
Next, in keeping with the glue theme, I attached a stone cab
to the center of a brass filigree butterfly and gently folded the wings over to keep it safe.
I was a bit surprised to find that it looked like a scarab,
but the back of the piece gives a hint as to its origins.
My final technique was to work with a piece of amber beach glass
that I’d picked up at Glass Beach in Fort Bragg, CA one summer.
Always intended to try my hand at drilling a hole, but never did.
For this cab setting, I textured a piece of brass and made holes with metal punch pliers.
Using 20 gauge gold wire, I cross wrapped the glass to the brass plate.
Wasn’t sure how to finish off the back, but I think this simple, tucked-in twist works.
A side note: I did try a prong setting with this little copper piece I had,
but there are too many tool marks from my attempts
to wrestle it into place for this to be used.
You may have noticed that seed beading a bezel was not one I attempted.
I tell myself that I just don’t have the patience.
If you are interested in this technique that produces a gorgeous setting for cabs however,
Sally posted a very thorough
tutorial on her blog. And if you are one who either never thought about using cabs in your jewelry work,
or wanted to and didn’t know how to go about it…
I do hope that my few explorations makes you think, “Hey, I could do that!”
I hope you’ll enjoy the many other designers that are participating
in this Creating with Cabochons blog hop. Please go to
Sally’s blog for the links.