Bridal Designs Deep with Meaning
by Brett Wilder, Exclusively for Fire Mountain Gems and Beads®

The bride is the center of attention on her wedding day, surrounded by her closest family and friends. The "old, new, borrowed and blue" tradition lets those intimate relations and friends connect with a bride by contributing clothing and accessories. Innovative jewelry-making ideas offer still more ways for the bride to keep meaningful mementos from those dearest to her close to her heart as she walks down the aisle.

One simple and easy way to incorporate small personal items into bridal jewelry is with beadable tubes. These hollow, clear acrylic tubes can hold messages from well-wishers, mementoes like tiny shells from a favorite beach, grains of rice from a sister's wedding day or clippings from a mother or grandmother's bridal gown. Beadable tubes have detailed metal caps in a selection of tones to complement bridal attire and come in a range of sizes. They make wonderful earring dangles or necklace focals, and can also accept additional components like pearl or bead dangles.

A bride may dream about wearing her mother's wedding dress on her special day. However, poor preservation, differing sizes or just incompatible styles can make it difficult. Yet you can beautifully display a clipping of memento lace between two glass slides to create a striking custom-made drop or pendant.

Bridal Designs Deep with Meaning To do this, cut the lace to shape, sandwich the lace between the glass slides and then apply Copper foil tape to the edges of the two slides. Use a burnisher to smooth the foil tape. Then apply glass flux to the copper tape with a brush. Heat a soldering iron and melt Canfield Pewter-Finish™ solder onto the copper tape. The resulting component will be a piece of preserved family-wedding history that can be incorporated into a range of jewelry designs as a single focal piece or along with other elements.

These techniques can be used to incorporate all sorts of deeply personal items and remembrances into unique bridal jewelry designs. Try these ideas for making evocative and attractive gifts for brides and members of the bridal party, and preserve the memory of that most special day forever.

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