SKILL LEVEL : Intermediate
'Tis the season to warm your heart or the heart of others! Create and capture heartwarming holiday memories by making and gifting this unique hand-stamped personalized heart ornament.
(Optional) Buff bracelet blank to a matte finish using Matte Finish Buffing Blocks. Use medium grit to create a brushed matte textured surface. Hold buffing block in palm of hand and use even, smooth downward strokes to buff surface to a matte finish. Repeat until desired texture is achieved.
Rotate stamping block so it's positioned in a diamond shape. Adhere a scratch protector on the block to reduce marring when stamping on both sides of the blank. Then place bracelet blank horizontally on stamping block.
TIP: Use stamp tape to secure the bracelet blank to the stamping block so it doesn’t move while stamping.
Secure straight stamp guide on the blank. Use guide marks to evenly space out letters and align stamp impressions. For 1/4” bracelets, make sure the top thin, blue horizontal line that runs through the guide marks matches up with the bottom edge of the bracelet blank.
TIP: Write desired message directly onto the stamp guide and utilize the guideline marks for spacing.
Place stamp on the blank, above the corresponding mark on the stamp guide. Lightly drag stamp towards the guide until the stamp catches the edge of the guide. Hold stamp flat and firmly in place by anchoring the side of your hand on workspace. Then strike the stamp once with medium force using Metal Stamping Hammer. Repeat to complete desired word. Remove stamp guide and flip the bracelet over.
TIP: If the stamp has an ImpressArt logo, make sure it is facing you so that the impression is stamped in the correct direction.
TIP: Slightly tilt the stamp towards you while dragging the stamp towards the guide. Make sure you hold the stamp flat and firmly in place before striking the stamp.
NOTE: For lowercase letters g, j, p, q, y: Place bottom of the stamp on the thin horizontal blue line that runs through the guide marks.
Stamp design stamps of your choice across bracelet blank. Use the Tilt & Tap technique to stamp 6mm and larger stamps, or stamps with more details. While applying pressure to the stamp, strike once with medium force. Then without lifting stamp, continue to strike while very slightly tilting the stamp in a circular motion to catch all sides of the design.
For a spark of color, stamp using a crystal setter. Hold crystal setter flat and firmly in place on the stamping blank. Strike with medium force using metal stamping hammer until a round indentation is formed in the stamping blank. The indentation should be deep enough so that the edges of the crystal are set in the divot and the top of the crystal protrudes out from the blank.
NOTE: Don’t position crystal punch too close to the blank’s edge as this may cause the blank to bulge out and distort as the metal spreads.
Highlight impressions with Stamp Enamel Marker. Wait 3-5 minutes and then wipe away excess from the surface of the blank.
Find the center of the bracelet blank using a ruler. Grab the center of the blank between the jaws of the Round Nose Pliers and use your other hand to bend the bracelet blank in half.
Form the top half of the heart using Ring Bending Pliers. Match the curvature of the pliers to the desired curvature of the heart shape. Start at the end of one side of the blank and squeeze down. Continue to squeeze and release to form a curve. You may need to use your hands along with the pliers to form the metal into shape.
Place ball pein texture stamp in the Multi-Function Hammer, with the notch in the stamp facing down. Secure stamp in the hammer by tightening the screw at the bottom of the hammer. Set heart on stamping block. Hold the hammer with your palm of your hand over the screw. Then while holding the heart in place, stamp only the sides of the blank repeatedly with medium force until the entire outside edge of the blank is textured with a bevel effect.
TIP: Use stamp tape to secure the blank to the stamping block so it doesn’t move while texturing. You will be able to texture the blank through the tape.
Pierce a hole at the top of the heart shape using the 1/16” punch of the 2 Hole Screw Down Punch. Simply turn the handle of the screw down punch until the punch pierces through the stamping blank. Twist the handle of the screw down punch in the opposite direction to raise the punch and remove blank.
TIP: Make sure not to screw the punch down too much as this will mar the surface of the blank and leave an unwanted impression of the base of the screw.
Create a wire wrapped bail with a head pin. Thread a head pin through the hole in the heart. Grab the wire close to the base of the head pin with chain nose pliers and bend the wire to a 90-degree angle. Then use round nose pliers to grab the wire right at the bend. Wrap the wire all the way around the top jaw of the round nose pliers. Then with the wire still in the pliers jaws, rotate the round nose pliers so that the bottom jaw is on top. Continue to wrap wire around the bottom jaw until a round loop is formed. Next, hold the round loop with chain nose pliers and wrap the wire down the headpin towards the blank. Cut excess wire with flush cutters. Use chain nose pliers to tuck in the remaining tip of the wire so no sharp edges are sticking out.
Buff stamped blank to a brilliant, high-shine finish using High Polish Finish Blocks. Use fine grit to quickly clean and polish blanks. Hold buffing block in the palm of the hand and move the block in even, back and forth strokes to remove dirt and dried enamel left on the raised surfaces. Use extra fine grit for buffing to a high shine. Hold buffing block in the palm of hand and buff in tiny, back and forth strokes with light pressure to get a mirror-like shine.
Secure flat back crystals inside stamped divot impressions with jewelry adhesive. Use tweezers to help set crystals in place, making sure not to scratch the crystals. Finally glue the ends of the heart together, and allow to dry before using.
Attach an ornament hook to the loop bail and tie a ribbon around the ornament hook to complete.
YOU WILL ALSO NEED
New to metal stamping or need a refresher? Go back to the basics with ImpressArt’s Basic Metal Stamping tips & tricks.
Learn how to use straight stamp guides to evenly space out letters and align stamp impressions.
Use the Tilt & Tap technique to stamp 6mm and larger stamps, or stamps with more details.
Make impressions stand out and easier to read by darkening them with stamp enamel.
Learn how to add a spark of color to hand-stamped pieces.