DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring

5.10.2011

DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring

(Pamela Love ring img source)

I fell in love with this tough but earthy Arrowhead Ring from Pamela Love (link is to the matte pink version) awhile ago.  Sporting a hand-carved arrowhead set in a thick silver bezel, this ring also has a line of silver flattened discs at the base creating a Southwestern-feel setting – which looks great with all the sheer pieces, bleached denim, and leather we’re seeing for Spring.  It’s taken me awhile, but I’ve finally figured out a way to recreate something similar to this lovely piece (less the $528 pricetag!).  Definitely not for the faint of heart, this 3-stage tutorial will take you some time, but the results are amazing.  It uses Apoxie Sculpt**, a new non-toxic, moldable crafting substance I’ve discovered recently, to emulate the black resin setting.  So, for around $40 total, here we go…..Project Difficulty:   DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring Expert (Very Difficult)

Part 1: Make the Bezel and Top Half of the Ring

You Need:DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring

*arrowhead (I bought mine at a local rock shop.  Try Amazon.com, Ebay, Etsy, Xump.com, AllTribes.com, or another online rock and mineral store if you don’t have such a place locally.)

*silvertone round wire (in a thick gauge; the thicker the better)…or you can use square wire or rectangular wire and skip the hammering part if you like.

*silvertone embossing metal sheet

*Apoxy Sculpt molding compound in black

 

And…

*tape (not pictured)

*wire cutting pliers

*old cloth (not pictured)

*hammer

*flat surface (I used a jeweler’s bench block)

*mechanical pencil

*scissors

*disposable latex gloves (not pictured)

 

How-To:
DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring1. Trace around the arrowhead onto the embossing metal. DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring Add about 1/2″ or so, and cut out the metal piece.  DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead RingThis will become the top half of the ring.

DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring2.  Take your wire, and loosely wrap it around the circumference of the arrowhead to guesstimate how much you will need.  Cut, and pull your wire through a folded-over cloth a few times to straighten all the kinks out of it.

DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring3. Using a hammer, pound your wire flat on a flat, strong, even surface (like the concrete floor in a garage).  I’m using a ball-peen hammer (you can just use a regular hammer; it doesn’t matter), but I also have a jeweler’s steel bench block – which is perfect for this as hammering the wire on top of this imparts a bright sheen to it.  Use what you can!

DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead RingAs you can see I didn’t straighten out the wire enough before I hammered it.

DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring4. Now wrap the arrowhead tightly with the wire, all the way around.  Use the pliers to push the wire into the nooks and crannies of the arrowhead; this is creating a faux-bezel.DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead RingI took this photo after I mixed up the Apoxie.  Interestingly, though it is nontoxic, the molding compound eats away at nailpolish.  Just an FYI!

5. Cut the wire flush at the tip of the arrowhead.DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring6. Mix up a ball of the Apoxie Sculpt according to the directions.  (In retrospect, I should have used a pair of latex gloves to do this…it’s extremely messy.)DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead RingDIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring7. Flatten the ball onto the embossing metal piece you cut out in Step 1).

DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead RingPush the arrowhead down into it so it is “sunk into” the Apoxie Sculpt.

DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring8. Add the wire, and use the mechanical pencil tip (with the pencil part retracted; or use another thin metal instrument instead) to push down the molding compound around the bezel.  Also use the tip to “cut away” the excess compound from  around the bezel, leaving the thinnest of layers holding that flattened wire around the arrowhead.

DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring9. Tape the ends of the wire together into the Apoxie Sculpt so they don’t stretch out, and leave to dry about 24+ hours.

Part 2: Make the Decorative Base

You Need:

DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring
*the top part of the ring you made in Step 9)

*silvertone ball-head headpins

*silvertone embossing metal

*Apoxie Sculpt

 

And…

*scissors

*wire-cutting pliers

*mechanical pencil

*flat plastic tool for smoothing
How-To:

DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring

10. Now that the top part of the ring is dry, cut away the excess embossing metal all the way around, as close to the hardened Apoxie Sculpt as you can.

DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring

11. Use your wire-cutting pliers to trim the ends off the headpins as close to the ball-ends as you can get.  You just need a little bit of the headpin left.

DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring

12. Mix up another small ball of Apoxie Sculpt.  This time, press it onto the back of the top part of the ring.

DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring13. Then press everything onto a new piece of embossing metal.  Push down so the molding compound swells around the edges of the top part of the ring.  Use a flat plastic tool (like a butter knife) to smooth the edges of the molding compound.DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring

14. Start pushing the trimmed headpins into the soft Apoxie Sculpt layer, going all the way around the arrowhead.  Just push in far enough so the ball-end is slightly sunk into the molding compound.DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring15. Allow to dry about 24+ hours.

Step 3: Finish and Attach the Shank

You Need:

*silvertone ring base (I used an adjustable ring base from the Dazzling Geodes line of findings from Jo-Ann Fabrics)

And…

*mechanical pencil

*scissors

*G-S Hypo Cement or other adhesive for gluing different materials to metal

 

How To:

DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring

16. After everything is completely dry (the Apoxie will be rock-hard), cut away the excess embossing metal at the bottom.  Leave about 1/16″ of metal around the edge.DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring

17. Use the mechanical pencil to smooth the embossing metal up and over the edge of the solid molding compound.  This creates a faux bezel around the whole piece.DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring18. Spread Hypo Cement onto the top of your ring shank, and glue the arrowhead piece onto it.  Allow time to dry (taping it together will help secure the bond).

DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead RingEt voila!  A rugged statement ring to sport on your finger – that gives off a Boho vibe or the je ne sais quoi of downtown cool depending on how you style it.

DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring

DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring

Happy DIY’ing!

xoxox
Carly

**What is Apoxie Sculpt?  Well, it’s a lot like PolyClay, except it’s a two-part mixture, that mixes to a putty-like texture and air-dries slowly over a 24-hour period.  It is non-toxic, and unlike PolyClay you don’t have to bake it in the oven (which means no harmful fumes in your oven, and you can use it with metal or stones or just about anything you can think of!).  It comes in a variety of colors, and after setting is ROCK-hard, and doesn’t shrink away from metal (like Japanese air-dry resin clay does, I’ve found).  It’s soooo easy to use, and there are hundreds of creative ways to use it, from setting stones to creating faux-pave, to faux enamel-work to using in place of adhesives (once cured, it’s much stronger than any adhesive on the market!)…for someone incapable of soldering like myself, my mind is spinning entertaining all the possibilities!  Get it exclusively at FireMountainGems.com.

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Filed in: DIY, Jewelry, My DIYs, Rings

Tags: Apoxie Sculpt, arrowhead, embossing metal, Pamela Love

 

 

30 Comments on DIY Pamela Love Arrowhead Ring

  1. Nury
    5.10.2011 at 1:42 pm (3 years ago)

    Wow that turned out amazing! You are soo creative and so good at DIY’ing. I love this, but it seems like it would take a good amount of time, and I am such a procrastinator with stuff that takes a good amount of time haha, so I am not sure if I would try to make this myself.

    Reply
  2. Katarina
    5.10.2011 at 1:44 pm (3 years ago)

    Very, very impressive. I tip my head just for figuring out how to do it!

    Reply
  3. Cecilia
    5.10.2011 at 2:09 pm (3 years ago)

    I can’t believe how much work you put into this! Amazing, absolutely stunning DIY project. I am quite an expert myself, but this looks highly “DIY-geeky” to me! Well done and thanks so much for sharing.

    Reply
  4. Angela
    5.10.2011 at 6:57 pm (3 years ago)

    This is so clever! I had never heard of half the materials you have used – thanks for sharing your knowledge and cleverness with us!
    Angela recently posted..How to Hem Jeans

    Reply
    • carlyjcais
      5.10.2011 at 9:27 pm (3 years ago)

      No problem Angela!!:-) I’m probably not using everything exactly how they were *meant* to be used originally, but the fun of DIY is re-purposing and re-invention, right?!!

      Reply
  5. Sara
    5.10.2011 at 7:09 pm (3 years ago)

    This is a dead ringer for the insanely-priced original piece! If I were to see someone on the street wearing your version, I would never guess that it was DIYed.

    Random question, but does Hypo Cement work on plastic as well? If so, where do you buy it?
    Sara recently posted..Everybody Everywhere- Florals Stripes Round 2

    Reply
    • carlyjcais
      5.10.2011 at 9:54 pm (3 years ago)

      Hey Sara- Thanks for your kind words! On my version the ball-pins are rounded, whereas the real version they’re hammered flat and a little smaller, spaced closer together – but I think that’s the only visible difference!! (And the silver bezel is thicker…okay, that too.) Sorry I forgot to include the link to the Hypo Cement; fixed now. The website where it’s sold says it’s for non-porous materials (thus, metal and glass; plastic is too porous to be used with this). It’s very similar to Crazy Glue in that it’s a cryanoacrilate that dries to a brittle finish, but is a little more viscous while wet. If you’re gluing mixed materials (like plastic to metal, for instance), and the seam is *not* going to undergo stress, probably good ol’ E6000 or another flexible glue will work. Oh! I really like Loctite Vinyl, Fabric, and Plastic glue. That is super-duper, even better than E6000. But if it’s a stress-bearing seam, definitely go with a 2-part epoxy for the strongest seal. Hope that helps!

      Reply
  6. Annette
    5.10.2011 at 10:25 pm (3 years ago)

    Hey Carly, I LOVE your version of the ring. I do have a quick question though: do you think that the 2 part apoxy you used could be used to make ring bases? i have a large ring size (13) and don’t really like adjustable bases. I’m worried that if I used it for that then it would expand/shrink and not fit, not be sturdy enough to actually wear, etc. Maybe if I wrapped apoxy around an adjustable ring base when it’s stretched to my ring size? any ideas? Thanks! I’m definitely gonna try this after finals are over!

    Reply
    • carlyjcais
      5.10.2011 at 10:56 pm (3 years ago)

      Hi Annette! Glad you liked the tute!!:-D Although Apoxie Sculpt can be sanded and shaped once cured, I’m not sure it would work as a ring base on its own. I think you could certainly wrap it over a metal base and allow it to dry and make your ring that way. The molding compound is waaay too soft to make a ring shape and then just leave it alone to dry; it has to have something to form it around or else it will collapse/crack, and unfortunately it’s super-sticky so whatever you form it around will probably get bonded permanently to it. Even though it’s extremely strong when dried I would be worried about it being too brittle on its own to be a ring shank. You might have to experiment with it a little!

      Reply
  7. Katherine
    5.11.2011 at 12:54 pm (3 years ago)

    Wow, this is definitely one of your better “Don’t Buy:DIY”s (and all of them are so good!). It looks really authentic and nice!
    Katherine recently posted..Liking Lilly

    Reply
  8. Kate
    5.20.2011 at 2:29 am (3 years ago)

    Hi,
    Such an amazing DIY, can I ask what thickness the wire was that you used?
    Kate
    x
    Kate recently posted..Navajo Craze

    Reply
  9. Harlow
    5.22.2011 at 4:36 pm (3 years ago)

    This is, in all honesty, incredible. I have been dying to get the Pamela Love ring and I was going to but when I came across your website, I was inspired to do it myself. Whoever, I do not know where I could find a ring shank? Could you tell me where you found yours?

    Kudos to your talent and creativity!

    Reply
    • carlyjcais
      5.22.2011 at 6:22 pm (3 years ago)

      Thanks Harlow!
      The ring shank I found at Jo-Ann Fabrics! You can also find ring blanks on Etsy. Good luck and have fun making your own version!:-)

      Reply
  10. Monica
    9.01.2011 at 9:46 pm (3 years ago)

    Carly, this is AMAZINGGGGG!!! I would love to try to make this. What size/ thickness was the wire that you used? or what size would you recommend? Thanks a million.

    Reply
    • carlyjcais
      9.03.2011 at 9:44 am (3 years ago)

      Thanks Monica! I think the wire I used was 16 ga; it was just the cheap, thick wire-wrapping wire sold at Michael’s. I think it was an aluminum-core. Really, the thicker the better; after smashing it flat it looks like pricey sterling bezel. Just make sure to straighten it before flattening it!! Good luck!
      xoxo
      Carly

      Reply
  11. Erika
    11.17.2011 at 9:06 am (3 years ago)

    This is so awesome. I am totally inspired to try this out…ordering apoxie sculpt now!! Thanks for sharing, can’t wait to see what else you come up with!

    Reply
    • carlyjcais
      11.17.2011 at 10:47 am (3 years ago)

      Aw, thanks! Hope you like it and have fun working with it…it’s a bit sticky but so awesome!

      Reply
  12. Maryellen Daugherty
    12.08.2011 at 11:24 pm (3 years ago)

    I had never heard of half the materials you have used – thanks for sharing your knowledge and cleverness with us! Carly, I am so impressed!
    Maryellen Daugherty recently posted..Cancer Tattoos Tumblr

    Reply
  13. Sara
    12.10.2011 at 6:32 pm (3 years ago)

    I actually have the Pamela Love Obsidian ring, and now after seeing this I wish I never bought it! Its amazing how you did that, I would love to make one, but obviously not another ring. Do you think this would work making a bracelet or necklace? Any tips?

    Reply
    • carlyjcais
      10.15.2012 at 12:35 am (2 years ago)

      Sure! A bracelet or a single pendant necklace to match your ring would be really fun! For connecting things together, you’d just add a snipped-down eyepin at the top or bottom of the arrowhead at the same time your sink the ball-end headpins into the Apoxie Sculpt. Just at the tip of the arrowhead don’t use a headpin, use an eyepin…and you have an instant pendant! (Or add another one at the bottom of the arrowhead and add chain to both eyepins to make a single-arrowhead-bracelet.)

      Reply
  14. Mina
    9.06.2012 at 2:39 pm (2 years ago)

    I don’t think I’ve ever left a comment on a blog or a tute before, but I was just floored by this! Stunning work!

    My question is this- How has the ring held up? Right now I’m in a position where, if I sink the time and money into this, I want to be reasonably sure it’s going to stand some heavy wear. Not that your ring isn’t so gorgeous that wearing it once would be worth the price of admission… But you know what I mean. I would want to wear this ring nonstop, that’s how much I love it! =)

    So what are your thoughts? And thanks again for such a perfect tutorial!

    Reply
    • carlyjcais
      10.15.2012 at 12:33 am (2 years ago)

      Hi Mina! Thanks so much for your kind words:-) In answer to your question, the ring has held up pretty well with wear. (But I don’t wear it every day; just once in awhile.) The Apoxie Sculpt hardens to ROCK-hard and doesn’t chip or crack after setting. The only problem that I could foresee is the glue you use to attach the ring to its base…I used E6000 in the tutorial, but I’ve had problems with it before. It’s really more of a “hobby” glue and isn’t industrial strength…I’m actually able to rip two parts that have been glued together using this back apart, even weeks after it sets! Though my ring has remained intact (and I’ve been v. careful), in hindsight I’d recommend a stronger glue for gluing to the ring base, like a 2-part epoxy (Devcon), or using more Apoxie Sculpt. You can actually find Apoxie Sculpt (well, something similar to it) at Michael’s stores now, in the section with the leatherworking and bags of rhinestones (or at least that’s where it is in my local Michael’s);-) But it is a bit of an investment…I use it frequently so it works out for me, but if you’re buying it to only use once, on this one piece, it may not be worth it for you.

      Reply

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