Bracelets, Bangles, and Cuffs: Learn to Make Quick and Easy Arm Candy in One Hour
It might not be officially summer yet, but thanks to the warm weather, it's officially short-sleeves-and-bracelets season! Though rings are my favorite piece of jewelry to make and wear, bracelets are the official jewelry of summer, to me. Wrists that have been hidden by sweaters, coats, and mittens finally have their chance to go bare and get some sun. Naturally, they need a little bling–and according to the rules of fashion these days, the more, the merrier!
An etched cuff bracelet from one of my favorite metal designers' shops on Etsy, Metal Me This.
Layering Bracelets and Bangles
In jewelry trends over the past few years, stacking and layering is The Big Thing. It seems the fashion world has decided that instead of one specific style, anything goes–and more is more. So people are piling it on, and stack rings, stacked bangles, and layered necklaces have become the norm.
Stacking and layering makes for a versatile trend, allowing everyone to mix, match, and make their own unique blend of metals, gems, jewelry styles, textures, and design elements. The yellow gold that's back in fashion? Yep. White metals? Sure thing. Metal darkened with patina, highly polished, or well textured? Bring it (all) on. Delicate and lacy, bold and chunky, bright colors and metallic neutrals–yes, yes, and yes please. Anything goes, and the only rule seems to be that you can't have enough.
Flame-Painted Copper Bracelet by Kitandcaboodle in the member gallery.
When I'm ready to make a new piece of jewelry, two of my favorite places to look for inspiration are your Etsy shops and the member galleries on Jewelry Making Daily. You are all so creative and I love seeing what you've been working on! Many of the bracelets shown here are your inspiring bracelet designs that have me in the mood to make bracelets for summer. But why bracelets?
Why Wear Bracelets?
I'm especially fond of bracelets for two reasons. One, I can't wear them while I'm working because they clank on the keyboard–so it always feels like a special occasion or fun work-free time whenever I'm wearing one. The other reason is because like rings, bracelets are one of the few types of jewelry you can actually see while you're wearing it, so you can enjoy their beauty and style as much as the folks who see you. It's just a bonus that short sleeves allow bracelets to shine in summer.
Grounded cuff bracelet by iwinterheart in the JMD gallery.
Why Make Bracelets?
Bracelets are a fun piece of jewelry to make, too. Because they're smaller than necklaces, they don't require as many supplies and make a nice shorter project to try out an involved technique in half the length of a necklace. I'm much more likely to attempt an involved process on a bracelet than a necklace, because it'll probably take about half the time and I'm so impatient! Bracelets are a great way to highlight a pretty, unique clasp as a design element (remember to add a counter weight on the opposite side to keep your bracelet from sliding around your wrist).
If you're as motivated to make bracelets now as I am, here's a great new resource that will help you along. Our newest download, One-Hour Bracelets with Jeff Fulkerson, is ready for instant download in the Jewelry Making Daily Shop! Then you can make a bunch in just one day, stack and pile them up each arm, and enjoy your fashionable self all summer long!