It’s Rings Week Here at Chic Steals!

Arbitrarily I have decided to make this week all about rings here on my site. One-fingered, two-fingered, sterling, precious metal, gemstones, faux, real, what-have-you – it’s all about finger-adornment!

If you have any questions about rings: how to organize them, how to clean them, and (best of all, IMHO) how to make them…either leave your questions in the comments or shoot them to me via the Ask me anything box in my right sidebar. —–>  I’ll be getting to them all week long, so send them my way!

So first things first, here are some books to learn from and be inspired by:

1000 Rings: Inspiring Adornments for the Hand

I love this book!  This is the perfect coffee table/inspiration book for anyone who loves rings.


30-Minute Rings: 60 Quick & Creative Projects for Jewelers

This is another one of my faves: beautiful photography and inspiring projects featuring a variety of techniques.

Make Your Own Rings: Easy ring projects to do at home

Another technique and tutorial book; this one also includes tutorials for rings made of Precious Metal Clay (PMC; similar to Art Clay Silver), which is a material people familiar with PolyClay can learn to use quite easily.

The Rings Book (Jewellery Handbooks)

Jinks McGrath, a well-known name in metalsmithing, has written this book which details ring-making for bench jewelers. Though this is certainly not for the hobbyist or beginner, the principles and techniques covered in this book are for fine jewelry and will familiarize anyone with how to properly create a durable piece of jewelry and work of art.

The Lord of the Rings: The Motion Picture Trilogy (Platinum Series Special Extended Edition)

Sorry, but we’re talking long-haired elves in tights.  I figured a list about rings would not be complete without the One Ring, hmmmm?  (Plus, the extended editions add almost an hour of cut footage to the movies -hence, more elves in tights.  All the more reason!;-P)

And to get further in the mood, here are a two DIY Ring Tutorials I’ve shared here on the blog:

Spiked Crystal Ring

DIY Rhinestone Panja


Well, I’ll just have to remedy that!


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DIY: Panja, or Back-of-the-Hand Jewelry

I became obsessed with making myself a Panja [i.e., back-of-the-hand jewelry piece] since seeing the above in Vogue October 2009. For all it’s highbrow designer, impossible-to-make-yourself fashion spreads, once in awhile the magazine showcases an idea that’s just mindblowingly awesome. How cool is this rhinestone-and-chain Alyssa Norton piece that the model above is wearing? (All her jewelry is really eclectic and covetable…to sum it up to its lowest common denominator, she likes wrapping silk thread around rhinestone chains; making rhinestones “cast” in metal and set into jewelry as if precious stones; barettes with dangling cords and rhinestones; and chain mail. Def. check out her site if you get a chance!)

But I’ve had Panjas on the brain since about 2005, when I saw the above Hahn An Su (sp?) design in a Vivi Magazine. I didn’t know what they were called then, but I definitely wanted one!

And then recently I saw this photo posted at Maverick Malone. She’s such a cool girl – and has great style – she just wrapped this broken necklace around her hand and wrist and called it a day. Love.

I don’t really know much about Panjas, so I am unable to educate anyone about them (and if they have religious significance I’m very sorry for my desecration and sacrilege) but….

Perhaps you can feel a DIY coming on?? LOL

I’m not paying $805 for the Alyssa Norton piece! So here’s the DIY:

How to Make a Panja [Back-of the Hand Jewelry]

You Need:*1 post rhinestone earring, pictured above (I used these earrings I got from Forever21 for $9.80)
*2″ flat silver curb chain
*1 small silver jumpring
*1.5″ wide x 8″ long piece of black fusible stretch mesh interfacing
*1 pair sew-on snaps
*needle + black thread (doesn’t have to be silk but can be if you like)
*sewing machine


1. Push the earring post through the center link in your chain piece. Using pliers, bend down and around the chain so the earring is secured and there’s no scratchy post end sticking out.

2. Wrap the chain around your index finger – cut to size. Secure with a jumpring.

3. Fold both long sides of mesh interfacing in towards center. Fold again in the center so you have a long rectangular strip with all raw edges enclosed. Iron flat – the heat of the iron will fuse the mesh together.

4. Sew along long edge of mesh to secure the folds you made.

5. Fold each shorter end over and secure with hand-stitching.

6. Place earring flat and stitch bottom rhinestone dangle to center of black mesh. This is the tricky part – you just need to weave in and out of the rhinestones with your needle, securing them both together and down. You don’t want the rhinestone dangles to move too freely across the back of your hand – so sew together inbetween the settings, and be carefuly of the thread catching on the rhinestone prongs.

7. Wrap the thread around the black mesh for a textural effect. (Here, to make it exactly like the Alyssa Norton piece, you can smudge silver fabric paint at intervals onto the black mesh, and decorate with rhinestones. I chose not to because I wanted more simplicity.

8. Hand-stitch a snap and its counterpart to each end of the black mesh.

You’re done! Super-easy, right???

Feeling the backs of my hands are sad and naked now without my Panja….

Happy DIY’ing!


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