Replacing a worn board game missing pieces? Breathe new life into the old set and upcycle it into coasters and wine charms for game night!
Step 1: Charm Materials and Tools
Materials for the wine charms:
- 8 Game pieces total. 6 player pieces + 1 house + 1 hotel.
- 8 Wire Hoops, medium size.
- 42 Beads. 6 beads were used on each charm, primary colors on the playing pieces and a mixture of color and silver "spacer beads" on the House and Hotel charms.
- 3Eyepins 3/4" length. One for the Thimble, House and Hotel charms.
- 5Jump rings, 7mm diameter. 2 rings for dog charm, one ring each for car, hat, and train charms.
- Super glue.
Step 2: Charms Construction
For the car, hat and train, the construction was straightforward.
- Drill a 3/64" hole to accommodate jump ring.
- Open jump ring, thread through hole and close. Open the jump ring by bending the ends sideways. Bending sideways allows easy pinch to close and does not deform the ring.
- Thread 3 beads onto hoop.
- Thread the charm onto the hoop.
- Thread the final 3 beads onto the hoop.
- Bend the end of the hoop a little past 90 degrees (~100 degrees), creating a hook to hold the hoop closed with a little tension.
Step 3: Thimble Charm
The thimble charm's attachment is a bit difficult. A hole centered on the thimbles top is the natural place. However, the interior is too small to access with tools. Solution- thread the eyepin from the inside-out.
- Drill 3/64" hole to accommodate the eyepin.
- Fold the eye of the eyepin over 90 degrees, forming a stop.
- Thread the eyepin through the thimble, inside-out.
- Pull snug with pliers. Apply 5 minute epoxy inside the thimble, cementing the eye. Hold tension while the epoxy hardens. The cure time will be longer in the confined space.
- Using pliers, roll the protruding end of the eyepin into a helix.
- The helix can be collapsed into a new ring, similar to closing jump rings. Cut the helix, leaving one complete turn. Pinch together, forming a ring on the thimble's head.
- Bead and assemble same as basic charm.
Step 4: Dog Charm
A collar is a natural connection for the dog charm. No drilling required, just an extra ring.
- Open a ring far enough to thread around dog's neck- the "collar".
- Thread a second, closed ring onto the collar.
- Close the collar.
- Finish the charm as usual.
Step 5: Boot Charm
The boot charm has a natural place for connection- the bootstrap. Drill out to attach.
- Using the 3/64" bit, carefully drill out the bootstrap. Work sideways to slowly clear the interior.
- Finish the charm the usual way.
Step 6: Home and Hotel Charms
An eyepin centered on the side of each piece makes a good connection.
- Cover the face with tape.
- Drill a 1/32" hole through the tape at least halfway into the playing piece.
- Insert the eyepin into the hole to estimate the length needed. Cut the excess off the pin.
- Use wire cutters to gently score the eyepin's shaft.
- Squirt super glue along the shaft of the eyepin and insert into the charm.
- The excess epoxy will harden into a clump. Carefully clean off using a razor blade. Remove the tape, leaving a tidy attachment.
- Finish the charms as usual.
Step 7: Coasters Materials and Tools
Materials for the coasters:
- 8 Game property cards.
- Roll of cork backing, ~12" by 24".
- Felt fabric, same size as cork roll.
- Silicone epoxy. Flexible, waterproof, bonds to fabric and wood.
- Decoupage glue.
- Wood glue.
- Acrylic Varnish.
Step 8: Coasters: Construction
The coasters construction is straight forward.
- Lay the property cards on disposable paper, face up.
- Paint several layers of decoupage glue over the cards. Allow each layer to dry before applying the next.
- Arrange the cards on the rolled out cork board, estimating the amount of cork backings. Plan a ~1/8" border on each card and allow further ~1/2" spacing between each card.
- Remove the cards and spread flexible epoxy over the required cork. Use a spatula to spread evenly.
- Press the felt onto the cork by hand. Pile heavy books on the composite for several hours.
- NOTE: many flexible epoxies cure by evaporation, the books will slow this down.
- WARNING: follow the safety instructions of the epoxy to avoid dangerous vapors.
- Cut approximate backing for each card.
- Adhere the cards to the cork with wood glue, press with heavy books while drying.
- Trim the borders of your coasters cleanly.
- Spray the coaster-tops with several layers of acrylic varnish, creating a non-tacky surface.
Step 9: Game On!
Enjoy your themed charms. May upcycling bring you good luck next game night!