Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Steampunk Brooches

I have always felt the allure of steampunk, since before I knew it had a name, or even was a thing.  The Victorian nostalgia combined with a future of steampower and gears, the mystery and genius of Nicola Tesla, yes please!  So when I saw these Deep Dish Jewelry findings, I knew I had to do something special.  Their design also held a wonderful surprise for me, but I'm getting ahead of myself.
Steampunk Debutante Tags
Distress Stickles
Various Gears, charms and pins
Grungeboard Wings and Key
Teal Adirondack Paint Dauber
Distress Ink: Pummice Stone
 As limited as my sewing ability is, I have built a corset, and I would really like to make steampunk costumes.  So I decided to start with some cool brooches that would have an industrial, artsy, slightly miliatry feel to them.  Obviously victorian, nouveau and gears are a must! One girly one for me and more Tesla for the Boy.(my boyfriend)
I put on my Caravan Palace Album for background inspiration, selected my images and used the shapes that came with the charms as templates for trimming though they were a little larger than the bottom.  Once I had my images trimmed to fit I put a dot of 3D Lacquer inside and stuck them down. MAKING SURE THE CHARM EYE WAS IN THE DIRECTION I WANT FOR MY CHAINS TO HANG!!
 I chose my tiny gears and a couple small charms for inside.  My initial plan was to layer crystal lacquer and gears, letting each layer dry, giving it a 3D feel, but here's the surprise... those shapes that came with the Jewelry Findings are actually nicely protected acrylic that fits perfectly on the top of the finding like a shadowbox!!  So I scrapped my Lacquer filling idea for a loose gear shadowbox.  It's kind of a "Duh Chelsea" moment I know, but I was super excited!  And I wanted to make sure you know you have the option of either one.  So I added a little Distress Stickles to my images inside, as well as some Crystal Lacquer on the Light Bulb, and let them dry overnight.  I also Embossed a clock image on the grungeboard wings and painted them with teal Adirondack Paint Dauber, and inked the Grungeboard Key with Pumice Stone Distress ink.(not pictured)  I left these to dry as well.
 The next day...
I peeled off the protective film from the acrylic shapes and arranged my charms and clock gears (from a real clock) inside.  I put a thin line of Crystal Lacquer along the top rim lip and placed the front window panes in place.
While that dried I sanded the raised surface of the wings, and inked them, then glued the wings and key to the backs of the Findings with Crystal Lacquer. Behind that I glued the pinback also with Crystal Lacquer. Finally I attached all the hardware using jump rings, a few charms and the chain on the Finding loop and then a couple charms and a pin in the other end of the chain. VOILA!!!
The top pin is my girly one and the bottom is the Boy's, more industrial one.
Here's a closer view of the Brooches themselves.  Feel free to comment, or ask questions, I love sharing ideas, that's what it's all about!  For more great ideas check out the Sakura Design Team Blog!  


Movies I had on for inspiration while I worked: Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince, and Hellboy.


  1. Awesome work Chelsea... I love them all... I have just started to get interested in this kind of stuff... so glad to see yours!

  2. Fabulous! You've done it again!