Thursday, July 6, 2017


Last week I mentioned that I had been going through my photos of years of jewelry designs I had created. And, I came across a few that touch on the subject above: These earrings are all made with scraps that were on my bench. Since I wasn't well this week, I didn't make anything new, but I wanted to talk about scraps and leftovers.

Do you aim to re-use everything leftover when you make jewelry? What do you do with all the scraps and odds and ends? Whether I work with metal, or polymer clay, precious metal clay, etc...  I re-purpose/re-use/transform scraps into new components and pieces. There's basically zero waste in terms of materials in my studio and I'm quite proud of that :)

Here's some earrings I made using scraps:

Tribal shields: Scraps of Sterling silver wire balled up, flattened, soldered to leftover pieces copper from another project, and everything is soldered to the sterling silver wire frame, and decorated with  two small Turquoise stones:

Tribal Sheilds by Nathalie Lesage

These Moonstone Moon Earrings are not made with scraps, but there's a part of these that ends up in other designs - I use a sterling silver round disc blank, and I offset it in my disc cutter to quickly cut out a crescent moon shape to make these earrings:

Moonstone Moon Earrings by Nathalie (Girard) Lesage

So when I make these, I'm left with 'eye shaped' or 'marquise shaped' pieces of sterling silver. Some of those scrap pieces ended up in these designs:

Mother Earth Earrings: The textured sterling silver piece (shaped like a marquise a bit - vertical) is soldered on top of the 'dome' in this pair. I textured the pieces and soldered them to the base round disc shape.

Mother Earth Lampwork & Sterling Silver Earrings by Nathalie Lesage

And in this pair of Kyanite Chandelier Earrings, I used that same leftover cut-out shape from the Moon earrings, but this time, I used them horizontally to make the foundation of this unusual pair of chandelier earrings:

Kyanite Sterling Silver Chandelier Earrings by Nathalie Lesage

So how do you like 'scrap' earrings? Are you happy with how much you can re-use and re-purpose in your own studio? Can you share some of your re-using tips with us? We'd love to hear what you do!

I will be back later on this month with new earrings to show!

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  1. Nathalie, I admit I am not as good as you at repurposing. Although, I don't do cutting like you do so don't have those kind of scraps. :) All of these are really pretty and very creative. Thanks for sharing.

    1. I've reused scraps from cutting hemp cords I use in my designs into little glue-on accents on mini thank you cards or other crafts :) What kind of leftovers do you have? Can they be used in other crafts or multi-media pieces? :)

  2. I love this post Nathalie. I love that you re-purpose the leftovers. And you do it so well!! I am not working with metal (just yet) but I have leftovers of ribbon and cord. I have bags full of orphan beads to use. They will all find their way into new creations.

  3. I try not to waste much - but none of my ideas come close to this! Marvellous x