Use the included vector file in step 2, modify it for your own tastes, or design your own real wood earrings and simply use this Instructable as inspiration and one possible workflow.
These earrings are completely natural and are finished with a food-safe, satin gel varnish.
Step 1: Laminate Wood Veneers
There are many sources of veneer online and at other local plywood and lumber retailers. The main thing to remember is to buy thin, paper-backed, or unbacked veneers. Try to stay away from a phenolic backed veneer since it will show more of black line on it's edge.
Cut sheets in half using an exacto knife. Spread a thin and even coat of wood glue on the back of the two piece of veneer.
Sandwich the veneer together, wood facing out, and clamp together for 1 hour between two pieces of plywood.
Finally, once the glue is dry, using a 180 grit and then 220 grit sand paper, sand the sheets of veneer smooth. The layer of wood on the veneer is usually very thin - be careful not to sand too much.
Step 2: Design Earring
The .eps below contains the vector file. Feel free to modify the drawing to meet your own needs.
Step 3: Prep for Cut
I did some very simply color mapping with my vectors so that the holes for the jump rings would get cut before the vector outline of the earring piece was cut. That way I could be sure that the holes for the jump rings would be cut while the part was still held in place.
I also nested a few of the parts together to take full advantage of my material and have as little waste scrap as possible after the cut.
Step 4: Laser Cut
Pay two seconds of attention to the orientation of the grain in your sheets of veneer when you place it into the laser cutter. The stiffness and strength of the earring is directly related to the direction that the wood grain is running in the earring. One option would be to glue the two pieces of veneer together in step 2 with opposing grain directions, that way, no matter which way you put the veneer into the laser cutter it would have equal strength.
Step 5: Remove Tape and Organize
We started to accumulate a whole lot of parts very quickly since we cut the earrings out of a bunch of different types of veneers to experiment.
I used some plastic bags and bag sealer to keep track of everything and label all the wooden parts.
Step 6: Apply Finish and Dry
We chose to use a wipe on, wipe off satin gel varnish called "Good Stuff". It's a very easy finish to apply to small parts since you do it by hand with a cloth.
Let the parts dry on saran wrap or wire mesh so things don't stick for the recommended time. Flip the parts so both sides dry.
Step 7: Assemble
Connect two pieces, then another, and another.
Be sure to carefully pry open the jump ring laterally so as not to deform the ring. Then close the ring fully by undoing the bend you just created.