"Stained Glass" Flower Ring

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Introduction: "Stained Glass" Flower Ring

When I saw a similar tutorial on Pinterest for this, I was super skeptical. I mean, wouldn't the nail polish simply plop right through the wire loop? But I realized that with cute little loops, the nail polish will make a nice lacquered surface to make a colored petal. Ooh la la......This delicate ring is great for a pretty, budget-friendly Mother's Day gift. All you need is: 26 gauge wire + nail polish. You'll also need access to 2 pairs of pliers for the make-shift wire jig and something round to mold the ring around (I used a highlighter). This tutorial will also dabble a little into basic wire working with a jig, wire wrapping and work hardening. EDIT: If you're thinking, "I highly doubt this will work out," I uploaded a video of how the nail polish goes across the wire frame on Step 3!kk1k 

Step 1: Make the Jig + the Flower

In wire working, sometimes a jig is used to make evenly spaced and sized loops. Jigs usually look like a board with pins sticking out of it in a grid pattern. The concept is basically to have little anchor poles to wrap the wire around. Since 26 gauge wire is relatively soft, you can simply hold 2 pliers in one hand and wrap with the other hand. Hold the pliers with the tips pointing up so you can see the four tips aligned in a square. This is your jig. Now grab the wire about 2 finger's length from the end and start wrapping figure eights with the short end.

Step 2: Wrap It Up

Remove the flower shape out of your jig. Now you need to wrap the ends so they don't come apart. Wire wrapped for this purpose generally looks like a mini coil that one wire makes around another. To wrap up the flower, grab two of the petals with pliers. It's a good idea to grab the petal that was made last because it's the least stable. Hold the short wire and go around the flower stem a couple times tightly. Snip off the remaining bit of the short wire and cut the long side from the spool by about a hand's length.

Step 3: Paint!

This is where you add the "stained glass" part of the ring. The trick to this is to glob a droplet of nail polish on the petal, then pulling it across with the brush. If your nail polish is thicker, I might pool up on the flower and cover up with wire, so depending on how you like it, you can experiment with different viscosities.

Step 4: Put a Ring on It

Now you have a dry, pretty flower, use the stem to make the ring part. If you're worried that the wire will be too mushy, this is the time to grab your rawhide mallet and hammer the stem part. Why? This is called "work hardening". Wire gets more brittle the more you handle it, so even pulling it through your fingers a couple times can make it harder. But be careful! If your bend the wire too much at one spot, it might just snap apart! When you're ready...curl the stem around something about the same size as your finger. I used a chubby highlighter. If you have access to a graduated ring stick, this is the time to brandish it in all its glory. Slip the flower off and wrap the extra tail around the base of the flower. Trim off and make sure the pokey ends are tucked in. And voila, you have a ring!

Step 5: It Is Truth Universally Known...

...that a single thin ring is in want of another. Go ahead, make a bouquet of rings to adorn your finger!

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3 People Made This Project!

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41 Discussions

I can't wait to try this!

It is nice to see people trying this beautiful technique!!! For more advanced ideas viseted my Google +

if u let the nail polish(the amount u have allocated to the project) sit alone in a cup . bc u might not want to use the whole bottle on this! for a few mins. it will thickin. . how thick u wont it? if ur not certain. try it after 1 min. - need it thicker wait 2 more mins. n so forth, ill show u one I did later.

This project can be a lot easier for some if rather than simply spreading the nail polish over the ring, tacky glue is used as a base. It spreads easier and provides a more structured base to the color.

1 reply

Glue is not needed, just start with a couple of layers of clear nail polish first and allow it to dry before adding the colour

How long does it last before the nail polish cracks and falls out of the loops? Or is it sturdy enough to wear everyday?

Wouldn't it be easier to pour nail polish into a shallow, small dish and dip the wire petals into it-much as bubble blowing wand into soap?

just made my first one. A little tricky but easier than I thought. Thanks for this :)

Thanks for the tutorial! I will share and link back on my blog!

oh my gosh! This is AMAZING. I hope you don't mind that I've been showing people your pics:)

Excellent idea, thank you. I am going to make a few to put on my DYI birthday cards. Thank you again.

Thank you for the fantastic idea! I made one this weekend and I just keep making them because it is so easy and really fun. I used 3inch eyepins for the first one and after that I used copper jewelry wire. I also added a small bead to the center of the flower to make it interesting while wrapping the petals and before adding the nail polish.

I also used the cap of the nail polish to form the ring shape because it was what I had on my desk. the nail polishes I used were an opaque estee lauder, a tinted cellophane from stila, an OPI jelly which is sort of see thru, and an opaque shimmery mini nail polish. I hung the rings off a paper clip to dry upside down which has seemed to work so far.

What a cool idea! I got inspired and tried some this afternoon ;) Worked out fine!
Ten years back I got a ca. 10cm big flower like that - made from this windowcolour-stuff. Maybe that could be a material for bigger rings as well