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Sunday, June 3, 2012

Metal Stamping from a Penny // DIY

Finals are this week, so this weekend has consisted of Diet Coke, ice cream, and studying. Maybe some procrastination too...but we won't get into that!

Just a heads up - there won't be a blog post for this coming week because of finals and I move dorm buildings for the summer and I start my new summer job. So there won't be time for a blog post, let alone to make anything (sad face). Posts should return as usual next week though!

Today is a two-fer. The first part is a tutorial, the second part, I'm showing off a necklace I made here at the dorm! More details when you scroll down.

Now to the tutorial:

Lately, I have seen some cool metal stamping projects on pinterest. Alphabet metal stamps cost about $25 (sans coupon) at MIchael's for the whole set. That's a little pricey for me. Not that the price I got was too much better, but I was at an antique store with my mom once and found a set for $15 that was just as nice, so I got it. (sorry, there aren't pictures of it - I left it at home!)

But then came the real sticker shock. The metal to stamp on? If it's precut into necklace pendant sizes, it is $20. WHAT?!? No. That just isn't acceptable.

So my friend Katie and I decided to become inventive. 

This is actually the cheapest project I have made to date. And I doubt I could ever make anything any cheaper. The idea we came up with? Cost a penny. No joke!

We took a penny and made it into pendant-sized metal to stamp on. And it worked perfectly! We also made some out of dimes to have silver-looking pendants.

Here's what you'll need:
-penny or dime
-metal block to hammer on top of
-steel wool
-alphabet or number metal stamp set

Here's what you do:

1. Take a penny and start hammering it out on a flat metal surface. Hammer until you can't see Lincoln's face or the writing anymore.

2. Drill a small hole in the top of the penny.

This is what it looks like without any stamping:

3. Using the metal stamps, stamp out what you want it to say. I recommend starting at the middle letter and going outwards from each side to get it aligned the best. 

4. To get the imprinted letters to show up, I use sharpie. There's a fancier product to do this (can't remember the name...), but this is way more cost effective and simpler. Draw with the sharpie over the letters, making sure you get it in all of the grooves. Then, scrub the top of the penny with steel wool, which will take off any of the sloppiness (it'll happen, don't worry) and shines it at the same time!

And that's it!

This is the first one I did, so the "N" in the middle is a little sloppy. 

I made mine into a keychain, but they also make great necklaces! 
I made a necklace for my mom using a dime instead of a penny. She's worth the extra nine cents :)

Surprise! This blog post is a two-fer!

Then today, I got to make a really cool necklace as part of a floor event at my dorm! (err, not my floor...I was an honorary member for the afternoon...)

One of the RA's moms came in to show us how to do it. I think it turned out so great! The beads are rolled up paper. (I already have it on my list to make a tutorial for magazine/paper beads this summer so stay tuned!)

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"Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous be shaken." -Psalm 55:22
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  1. What a wonderful idea! I definitely need to buy some metal stamps, all the creations I've seen make me envious :)

  2. Lovely project AGAIN! Only criticism is that I would have LOVED to see the pendant you made for your mom!! <3

    Can't wait to see the tute for the paper beads!!! Thank you so much for sharing your talent with us! And I love the Scripture! <3<3<3

    1. Hopefully while I'm back home (finally!) I will be able to snap a picture of that pendant and put it up for you all! I didn't have access to it while at college, so sadly I couldn't post it here. Thanks for the input! I'll be sure to try and post it sometime.

      Thank you for your kind words and your support of my blog!


  3. Oh man. I saw a great deal on metal stamps, but didn't get them because of the cost of the blanks! This is genius, and now I'm kicking myself for not getting them.

    PS: I love the Scripture too!

    1. Thank you so much for your kind words, Mollie! I was so excited when my friend and I came up with this (cheap cheap) idea to replace those ridiculously overpriced blanks.


  4. Thanks for sharing such a creative design of metal stamping works. The metal stamping process involves various operations such as punching, coining, bending, flanging, and embossing and Steel Stamping method to create the attractive pendants designs for the users.

  5. Hi what did you use to drill the hole? Also how long did it take to smash the penny flat? Great post! Thanks!

  6. You can also use rubbing alcohol to take the excess sharpie off


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