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I've made custom belt buckles, I've made custom leather cuff bracelets, but I've never made a custom buckle cuff! Today's Behind the Scenes is a sneak peak into how I created this one of a kind bracelet.
This custom project combines two distinct components and materials, the bronze flower medallion and the hand dyed leather bracelet bands. The combination of materials is one of the things I love most about this piece.
Starting with the bronze flower medallion! If you haven't read about how I work with metal clay, you can take a look here. The post breaks down the steps I use when working with metal clay from beginning to end. I used bronze metal clay for this particular project, and you can see how the bronze flower medallion transforms before and after the kiln firing process.
After I hand cut, clean and fire the bronze flower medallion, I apply a blackened finish to give it my signature LPDstudios antiqued look.
The next component is the leather cuff bands for the bracelet, which starts as a single piece of raw leather. I cut the leather bands slightly bigger than I want the final measurements to be, which allows me room to shave off length and width when I smooth and shape the leather.
To coordinate back to the weathered look of the bronze flower medallion, I use hand tools to distress and wear-in the leather. This gives it the look and feel of a well loved, and worn bracelet. After the leather is distressed, I add a little bit of color! I apply several layers of dye to the leather until I achieve the desired richness. It gets a little messy, but totally worth the stained fingernails!
Next I had to decide how I wanted to join the two pieces together. I decided on cold joining the bronze medallion to the leather bands, because the alternative of soldering had the potential of damaging the leather.
In order to cold join, I made two brass plaques (with the LPDstudios logo on them of course!) and four posts. I fed the posts through small holes I made in the plaques, leather bands, and bronze flower medallion.
Next I gently hammered the brass posts down until they made a wide head that keeps all of the components in place. I taped around the area I was hammering to make sure I didn't damage any of the metal or leather.
And now this custom Bronze Flower Medallion Buckle Cuff is ready to go to it's new home!
Check out LPDstudios Custom Page to see more one of a kind work!
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