Tag Archives: handmade

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Belt Bracelet DIY

A great way to nurture creativity is to try something new.  This belt bracelet DIY is a low-cost, fun way to expand your horizons and make something fun that you can show off to your friends.

Leather bracelets are trendy, earthy and so versatile. Leave the leather unadorned or attach a button, an old broach or an item that has special meaning to you to add your own personal touch.  You may even have a belt in your closet that you can use for this project.

Let’s get started!

Materials:

  • Narrow belt (approximately 1/2 inch wide)
  • 2 – 1/2 Inch Ribbon Crimps
  • 7-10 Split Rings
  • Lobster Clasp
  • Headpin
  • Decorative Beads

Tools:

  • Scissors • X-Acto Knife
  • 2 Pairs of Round Nose Pliers
  • Split Ring Pliers
  • Wire Cutters

1. Use your ruler to determine a straight line across the belt, near the belt buckle. Use your X-Acto knife or sharp scissors to make a straight cut to remove the belt buckle.

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2. Loosely wrap the belt around your wrist 3 times to measure length needed. Hold your finger to mark where the end of your belt meets on the third wrap. Lay the belt flat on your cutting mat making sure to keep your finger at the spot where the to ends met. Subtract 1.5 inches from this length to allow for your ribbon crimps and closure and cut belt to length with x-acto knife or scissors. Wrap the belt around your wrist again to make sure you have cut off enough to leave a 1.5 inch space between the two ends on third wrap.

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3. Attach ribbon crimps to each end of the belt. To do this simply slide your belt into the opening and squeeze the entire length of the crimp with pliers tightly.

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4. Connect 2 split rings using the split ring pliers.

5. Attach the lobster clasp to one end of the split rings.

Split Rings on Lobster Clasp

 

6. Attach the other end of the split rings to the ribbon crimp.

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7. Make a chain by attaching at least 5-7 split rings.

Split Rings

8. Attach split ring chain to the other ribbon clasp.

Split Rings to Crimp

 

9. Thread beads onto the headpin.

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10. Form a loop at the top of your beads by wrapping the wire around the nose of your round nose pliers.

Beads

11. Thread the open loop onto the end of your split ring chain. To close the loop simply hold your loop with one set of round nose pliers and use the other set of round nose pliers to grasp the end of the wire and wrap it around the base next to the bead. Once you have done this snip the wire close to the wrap and bend in the end so that it doesn’t catch.

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12. Try on your fabulous new earth friendly triple wrap belt bracelet!

Triple Wrap Belt Cuff

We hope you enjoyed this DIY project.  If you would like to see more of our bracelet designs click here.

We hope you are having a happy and creative summer!

Preservation Hall Jazz Band NOLA

Creative Inspiration from New Orleans

In our last blog post we suggested some ways to nurture your creative spirit.  I (Carolyn) took our advice and tried #15 last week.  I took a trip to New Orleans with my husband.  It’s impossible to spend time in that city and not feel creatively inspired.  They have the best of my favorite forms of creativity:  food, art and music.

On Monday night, after a day of exploring the Garden District and French Quarter, we visited Preservation Hall, an all ages historic jazz club in the French Quarter.  The music was amazing and I fully enjoyed it but by then I was a little creatively distracted; imagining all pieces of jewelry I could make from the instruments that the musicians were playing.  So the first chance I had when I got home I made a few new things.

I have thinking about how to use a piano key for a while.  I started off with the idea of making earrings but I ended up with a necklace.  Isn’t that always how the creative process works?  You never know what the end result will be.  You can find this necklace on our website by clicking here.

Piano key "before" picture.

Piano key “before” picture.

Cutting piano key with scroll saw.

Cutting piano key with scroll saw.

Sanding piano key with disc sander.

Sanding piano key with disc sander.

Cutting piano key into smaller pieces with scroll saw.

Cutting piano key into smaller pieces with scroll saw.

Piano Key Necklace

This is what emerged from the dust – a piano key necklace

Piano Key Necklace

Piano Key Necklace

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The trombone player at Preservation Hall was amazing.  His trombone caught my eye and I was thinking about making a necklace with it.  This is what emerged today.  You can find these earrings on our website in silver by clicking here and in gold by clicking here.

Trombone

Trombone “before” picture.

Cutting the trombone with my Dremel

The first cut.

Cutting the trombone down to size using my trusty Dremel.

Cutting the trombone using my trusty Dremel.

Sanding metal isn't for the faint of heart or for gloveless fingers.

Sanding metal isn’t for the faint of heart or for gloveless fingers.

My drill press making drilling holes for the ear wires quick and easy.

My drill press makes drilling holes for the ear wires quick and easy.

Trombone Earrings

Trombone Earrings

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finally, the upright bass.  I’ve been eyeing the tuning pegs for some time now.  Little did I know that they are extremely difficult to cut and virtually impossible to drill a hole through.  This is what I ended up with after several broken drill bits and a bruised pride.  You can find this necklace on our website by clicking here.

Upright Bass scroll and pegs.

Upright Bass scroll and pegs.

I could unscrew the tuning peg so I had to cut it off using my Dremel.

I couldn’t unscrew the tuning peg so I had to cut it off using my Dremel.

The end result - necklace made from bass peg.

The end result – necklace made from bass peg.

 

 

 

 

 

 

We also have other jazz band inspired jewelry available on our website made from drums, saxophones, clarinets, trumpets and more.  Check out our Band of Angels Musical Instrument Jewelry Collection by clicking here.

It’s important to note that no working instruments were harmed in the making of this jewelry. We only use instruments that have been deemed irreparable by experts.  A portion of the proceeds from all of our musical instrument jewelry collection goes directly to Band of Angels KC, an organization who collects, repairs and distributes instruments to kids in need who would like to participate in band and orchestra programs.  Our donations, specifically, are used to send kids in need to music camp.  We are very proud to work with this amazing organization.

We had such a wonderful time in New Orleans and appreciated every second of our visit.  We hope that you find a magical place that inspires you this summer whether it be in your back yard or somewhere far away.

 

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Looking for Unique Gifts For Graduates?

Look no further!  We have a great selection of graduate gifts from hand-stamped pieces to jewelry made from musical instruments.

This is a small selection from our Literacy Kansas City Collection.  A portion of the proceeds from this collection will be donated directly to Literacy Kansas City.   Literacy KC’s mission is to advance literacy among Kansas City area adults through direct services, advocacy and collaboration.  Their vision is literacy for all.   Who doesn’t love a gift that gives back by helping others?

Dream Vintage Spoon and Belt Cuff Bracelet from Hang Ups in KC Dare To Dream Handstamped Bracelet from Hang Ups in KC Antique Typewriter Key Necklace from Hang Ups in KC Live Courageously Handstamped Spoon Bracelet by Hang Ups in KC Enjoy the Ride Leather Stamped Bracelet by Hang Ups in KC On to the Next Chapter Hand Stamped Bracelet By Hang Ups in KC Dream Big Hand Stamped Feather Necklace With Brave Wings She Flies Handstamped Long Necklace Oh The Places You'll Go Hand Stamped Leather Bracelet

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jewelry from our Band of Angels Collection also makes great gifts for students and teachers.  A portion of the proceeds from the sale of every item in this collection goes directly back to Band of Angels KC.  Band of Angels is a non-profit organization who collect, repair and distribute instruments to kids in need.  They also send many kids to music camp every summer.  We have a lot of fun making jewelry from the instruments that cannot be repaired.  Here’s a small sampling of what is available on our website.

Violin String Earrings

Cello Tuning Peg Necklace Saxophone Key Cuff Links Clarinet Key Necklace Drum Cymbal Cuff BraceletHammered Flute Body Earrings Piano Wire & Leather Bracelet Viola Wood Earrings French Horn Valve Key Necklace

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

To order you can visit us online at www.hangupsinkc.com or simply click on the photos of an item that you like from above.  Orders arrive in a pretty muslin bag with a thank you note from the Director of the non-profit that benefits from the gift.

We wish you all a very safe and happy graduate season and Memorial Day Weekend.  Happy Victoria Day to our Canadian Friends!

A Behind the Scenes Peek at Kristi’s Creative Space

Two weeks ago we gave you a behind the scenes peek of our process of making.  We showed you the kinds of tools we use when we cut and shape a retired drum cymbal into a pair of earrings.  If you missed it you can find it here.

This week we want to share a behind the scenes peek at Kristi’s workspace.  We have separate workshops/ studios in our respective homes.  Both of our workshops have cool tools and generally a big mess of metal & wood shavings but Kristi’s workspace is definitely the prettiest of the two.

Welcome to Kristi's studio!

Welcome to Kristi’s studio!

There are a LOT of supplies involved in making jewelry from beads to metal findings and last but not least the focal pieces which for us are musical instruments or antiques.  If you look at the bottom left hand corner of this photo you will see Kristi’s custom stamping bench that she uses when adding quotes or words to antique silverware.  On the middle left side, several boxes of beads.  Center, hanging beads. Want to know a secret about Kristi?  She’s a button and bead hoarder.  Those beads you see in this photo?  They are just the tip of the iceberg.

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Kristi likes sparkly beads and has a talent for mixing colors.

 

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Can you see the sign that says “Of course I talk to myself! Sometimes I need expert advice.”?

Another secret about Kristi?  She talks to herself.  A lot.  One of side effects of working alone most of the time.  We all do it.  Right?  If you look in the top right hand corner of the photo above you’ll see a framed book page featuring an image from one of Kristi’s hand-carved stamps.  You can see more evidence of Kristi’s talent at hand-carving rubber stamps on the note cards displayed down the right hand side of the photo.  Kristi’s work space is full of fun and beautiful items, collected over the years, that inspire her.  We both love to fill our work areas with handmade items that we love.  Hey look, there are more beads on the top right-hand corner of her work bench!

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Can you guess what each of these tools is used for?

One of my favorite things about Kristi’s workspace is that it’s filled with customized organization solutions like the magnetic strip she uses to keep her pliers, screw drivers and other tools organized.

If you’d like to see our creations please visit us at hangupsinkc.com.

Thanks for joining us for this behind the scenes peek at Kristi’s studio.  We would love to see your work area, pretty or not.  Post a picture in the comments section and we can share tips on functionality and organization.

Have a great week!

 

 

A Behind the Scenes Peek at the Making of Drum Cymbal Earrings

Kristi & I rarely make jewelry for ourselves.  I guess it’s a hazard of any “maker” occupation.  We are so busy creating for others that we forget to make ourselves new jewelry.   I made Kristi drum cymbal earrings a few weeks ago and admire how pretty they look every time she wears them.  Today I decided that I need a pair of earrings for myself.

Welcome to my workshop.  It’s not fancy but it’s bright and functional.  It’s my favorite place to spend my days.

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After some experimentation I’ve found that my Dremel is the best tool to use when cutting the cymbal.

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Sanding pieces of metal this small is tricky. I can’t wear gloves because the piece of cymbal is too small to grip. It gets VERY hot so patience is required.

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I love my drill press so much. For projects like this it is so fast & easy!

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I decided against beads so I just needed to add the ear wires.

Ta-da!

What do you think?

What do you think?

Stay tuned – next week we’ll give you a behind the scenes look at Kristi’s workspace.

Have a great week friends!

 

 

Happy Thanksgiving from Hang Ups in KC

Five orange pumpkins sit in a row in front of a distressed, wooden background.

We both feel so blessed with the support of our families, friends and our customers on this crazy fun journey we’re on.
If you’d like to come out and see us in person in December we’ll have a pop-up shop open at Meyer Music in Overland Park (corner of 133rd and Quivera) on Saturday December 5th and at Meyer Music North (at the Boardwalk Square Shopping Center) on Saturday December 12th.
We wish you and your family a very happy Thanksgiving!

Where You Can Find Hang Ups in KC This Fall

Fall is fast approaching.  The kids are back to school, vacations have been taken and Hang Ups is in full swing again.  This fall will be a little different from past years’ for us.  This year we are only doing one show where, in the past, we’ve done several.  We have stepped back from the fall show circuit to celebrate some big birthdays (that happened to fall on show weekends) with our families.

If you’d like to come out and see our Hang Ups in person we’d love to see you at the Chick Events Handmade & Vintage Show in Leawood, Kansas.  Click here for directions.

Chick Events Top Banner

This show takes place Saturday September 12 (10am-8pm) & Sunday September 13th (11am-4pm).  Tickets are $5 per day or $8 for a weekend pass.  Children 12 and under are free.

Some of our favorite makers will be there:

Chick Events Banner w NiChern

Dog collars by Ni-Chern Designs

The Little Wing & Stik A Pin In It

“Hi” Hoop Art and Nellie The Friend Doll by The Little Wing and “Thread Licker” Hoop Art and Cat Stitch Art By Stik A Pin In It

We are also looking forward to seeing our friends from A Perfect Treasure, FLiP KC and The Tulle Box.   For a complete list of vendors click here.

If you can’t make it out to the Chick Events Handmade & Vintage Show you can always find us online.  We currently have almost 200 of our creations available on our website.  We have many new items that have not made it to our website yet.  We will be working hard to add these new designs in the weeks following the Chick Events Handmade & Vintage Show.

Happy almost-fall friends!

Carolyn & Kristi

 

 

31 Finds and Flavors of Kansas City

Kansas City is a great place to start a small business.  There are resources such as the Kauffman Foundation, creator of the 1 Million Cups program that specifically support entrepreneurship.  Presenting at 1 Million Cups was an amazing experience for us.  In fact, that is where we met Mike Meyer from Meyer Music and co-founder of Band of Angels.  Check out our Band of Angels Collection, jewelry made from retired instruments here.

There are also several programs/ groups such as Made in Kansas City, Handmade in Kansas City and KC Source Link that specifically work at growing the local economy by encouraging people to buy, eat and drink local.

For the month of May KC Source Link (together with Shop Local Alliance) is hosting a fun promotional program called 31 Finds and Flavors of Kansas City, Entrepreneurs in Action.  Several of our Handmade in Kansas City Team Members have been and will be featured.  We’ve all answered a fun questionnaire so you can get to know us a little better.  Hang Ups in KC will be featured on May 9th.  One of the questions that we answered was what we considered our “entrance music” or theme song.  Can you guess what it is?  Check out our feature on May 9th to find out.  Click here for the link to make it really easy.  You can also learn more by searching #shoplocalkc.

Here’s the schedule of businesses that will be featured.  If you know any of them please help spread the word on social media by using the hashtag #shoplocalkc.  We encourage you to check out the businesses that are new to you.  In our opinion the only thing better than shopping local is shopping local HANDMADE.  Enjoy!

Flavor Day Holiday
Remnants by RJ 1 Space Day
Wood + Salt 2 Brothers and Sisters Day
Creations by M and J 3 day after Baby Day
Springboard Creative 4 National Candied Orange Peel Day
Panaderia de las Americas 5 Cinco De Mayo
Aunt Christy’s Country Kitchen 6 No Diet Day
KC Cool 7 National Tourism Day
Worlds Window 8 No Socks Day
Hang Ups in KC 9 pre Mother’s Day
Indigo Wild 10 Clean Your Room, Mother’s Day
Dolce Bakery 11 Eat What You Want
Fusion Fitness 12 Fatigue Syndrome Day
Red Dirt Shop 13 Donate a Day’s Wages to Charity Day
Lu & Ed 14 Chicken Dance Day
Family Bicycles 15 Bike to Work Day
Nuggets of Goodness 16 National Sea Monkey
Life’s Gems 17 Pack Rat Day
Tulle Box 18 No Dirty Dishes Day
Ugly Glass & Co 19 May Ray Day
Snow & Co 20 Pick Strawberries Day
Tasty Thai 21 National Waiters and Waitresses Day
French & Music House 22 Musical Instrument Day
Ni-Cherns Designs 23 Lucky Penny Day
Handmade by Lolo Z 24 Tiara Day
Geek Chic Boutique 25 Towel Day
The Little Wing 26 Sally Ride Day
Swim Zip 27 Sun Screen Day
Stand Out Style 28 Golden Gate Bridge
One More Cup 29 Get Caught Reading
Coffee Girls 30 Neighbor Day
Ocean & Sea 31 Aquarium Month (June)

Mother’s Day Hang Ups

If you are hung up on what to get your Mom for Mother’s Day we have some suggestions that are unique and can be personalized in different ways.  How about:

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A hand-stamped vintage key necklace.

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A charming bangle acknowledging that Mom’s are pretty well always right.

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A reminder to Be True.

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 Hugs and kisses in the form of antique typewriter earrings.

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Some love to your Grandma or to your Mom from your kids in the form of a Grandma love necklace?

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A Live Courageously bracelet to acknowledge the battle she’s fought and overcome.

Check out our website for several other unique and customizable Mother’s Day gift ideas.  If you want us to custom create something special for your Mom send us an email to info@hangupsinkc.com.

Happy Mother’s Day!

Happy Earth Week from Hang Ups in KC

Earth Day is celebrated around the world every year on April 22nd.  We celebrate the Earth year-around by doing what we can for the environment such as recycling, buying energy efficient appliances, teaching our kids about the environment and repurposing not only at home but in our business.  Did you know that approximately 80% of our handmade jewelry is created from repurposed items?  In case you did not know this we thought we’d share some photos to show you what we can do with vintage and repurposed treasures.

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From left to right: Dream Bracelet, from our Literacy Kansas City Collection, made from a repurposed leather belt and a vintage spoon handle.  Upcycled Guitar String Earrings from our Band of Angels Collection.

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From left to right:  Antique Typewriter Key Earrings, from our Literacy Kansas City Collection.  An upcycled Antique Sugar Spoon Necklace hanging from a long silver chain.

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From left to right:  Live, Love, Read Necklace, from our Literacy Kansas City Collection, made from a vintage silver plated teaspoon.  Upcycled Clarinet Key Bracelet from our Band of Angels Collection.

If you’d like to see more of our creations come and visit us at hangupsinkc.com.  Our friends at Handmade in Kansas City are also featuring several locally handmade eco-friendly creations in their blog this week.  Check them out at handmadeinkc.com – you’ll love what they have to offer.

We can all make a difference!  We’d love to hear how you celebrate Earth, whether it’s on Earth Day or any other day.