Introduction: Crazy Checkerboard Earrings
I love wood, it's such a warm and inviting medium. I like the way these earrings take something boring and structured and make it interesting and organic.
If you can't make your own, you can buy them at my store here
Step 1: You"ll Need
First, you'll need wood. Here I've chosen maple and walnut because I think contrast is important and I like the brown and (almost) white. These earrings are going to be 3/4" x 1 1/2" x 1/8", so I start with wood that is 3/4" x 1 1/2" x 3/8".
You'll also need:
4 ear wires
8 jump rings 7mm and 4mm
sandpaper 150, 220, and 400 grits
finishing material: I use a mixture of beeswax and mineral oil
removable double sided tape
clear packing tape
a band saw
a scroll saw
a drill with an 1/8" bit
Step 2: Your First Cut, Lengthwise
You'll be making your first cuts now.
Remember, saws aren't friendly, they'll take a finger if they get a chance; don't give them one. With my band saw I use push sticks of scrap plywood. On the scroll saw, I use an "L" shaped jig to hold the piece and keep my fingers safe.
First, put a strip of REMOVABLE double sided tape on one piece of wood and then put the second piece of wood on top. This tape is to keep things from slipping. Now, wrap a piece of clear packing tape around both pieces, LONGWAYS. This tape holds the pieces together while you're cutting.
Now, on your scroll saw, cut two freehand curves. That will leave you with 3 stacks of two pieces.
Remove the tape, don't forget the double sided tape, and lay them out in order. Now, swap the center pieces, clean off the sawdust and glue and clamp them.
After the glue sets, sand them flat.
Step 3: Make the Cross Cuts
Now, take the two blocks and put double sided tape on one. Put the other piece on top. MAKE SURE THEY'RE LINED UP SO THE CUTS MATCH.
Wrap clear packing tape around the WIDE side of the pieces.
Cut 5 freehand curves through the wide side of the blocks. As you cut, keep the pieces in order. That makes it a lot easier.
Remove the tape and arrange the top pieces and the bottom pieces in order. Clean off the sawdust.
Now, alternate the pieces and glue and clamp them. You now have two blocks, each block will make a pair of earrings.
When the glue sets, sand them flat
Step 4: Finish Them
It's time to slice each block into earrings. Using a band saw, slice the blocks in half. Use push sticks,
Using rough sandpaper, sand out the saw marks.
Match the pairs and make sure they're facing the right way.
With a pencil, mark the hole locations; about 1/8" from the top and centered on each piece. Drill 1/8" holes.
Sand them using progressively finer sandpaper. Round the edges and corners.
Apply the finish of your choice. I use a mixture if beeswax and mineral oil made for cutting boards.
Use the jump rings to attach the ear wires and you're finished. You have 2 pair of unique earrings, perfect gifts.