One of the things I like to do is go onto eBay and look for auctions that are ending soon. When you filter to things from the outside of the UK especially, with free postage, you can find things going for pennies.
Recently I’ve been collecting a lot of cabochons and settings using this method. A cabochon is a glass dome piece, like this..
They come in all kinds of shapes and sizes, as do the settings.
Once I received my bits and pieces it was time to get experimenting. I tried four different methods for decorating the back of the cabochons. There are some that I bought from eBay with pictures already on them.
(I got these from seller Pandahall1972 who has a jewellery store and sells all kinds of goodies for excellent prices.)
The bottom right is a picture I drew myself, the bottom left is cut from a magazine, and the top right is origami paper. I modpodged the paper onto the flat side of my cabochons, and this seemed to work best. The top left cabochon I actually decorated with layers of nail polish.
The modpodging paper worked brilliantly, although the hand drawn piece bled which I should have foreseen.
But overall I was happy with my cabochons. Next stage – putting them in the settings. This is where the real trial and error started.
First thing I learned? Don’t just dump a load of modpodge in the setting and press the cabochon in.
Seriously, you don’t need even half as much as that.
In fact, just scrape a tiny teeny bit onto the back of the cabochon.
I tried other glues too. Superglue…
..and hot glue. The hot glue dries VERY quickly, so you have to be fast or your cabochon won’t sit properly in the setting.
Once everything dried, it became clear which method I’d be continuing with.
Superglue – no. Definitely not.
Hot glue worked, but left the cabochons feeling not-quite-steady in the setting. Lots of modpodge was acceptable, but you have to peel off all the excess which can leave your setting with marks.
You don’t need a lot of modpodge. The light scrape worked fine – and I banged it around a bit to make sure the cabochon was secure. With a successful method in the bag, I made up a few more.
And then I high-tailed it to eBay. Now I’ve got all sorts of different shapes and sizes waiting to be made up into beautiful pendants.