Crystal Jewelry Box
I decided to make one of my own with heart shaped gems. It was really fun and easy, plus my husband was impressed and confounded how I’d done it. If you want to use an inset box like mine was, you’ll need to size down your pipe cleaner shape so that it will fit into the design.
What you’ll need:
• White pipe cleaners
• Heat-safe glass jar or container
• Measuring spoons
• Gel food coloring (liquid would work, too)
• Paint brush
• Testors Metallic Gold enamel paint
• Paint thinner
• E6000 glue
• Decorative box
Step 1: Create the base for the crystal. Using a few pipe cleaners, form a coil, weaving the ends in and through the coil’s layers as you go. This will help secure the disc-like shape.
Step 2: Cut a 12-inch long piece of string and thread it through one of the outer rings of the coil. Set the whole thing aside.
Step 3: Measure out 9 tablespoons of Borax into a heat-safe glass container or jar.
Step 4: Boil 3 cups of water in a small pot and mix in food coloring. (Start with about ½ teaspoon of gel food coloring, and add more if you know you want a deep tone.) Stir to encourage the gel to mix in completely, then carefully pour the still-boiling water over the Borax powder and mix until dissolved. (You can add more coloring to the water once the Borax is dissolved if you’d like a deeper hue.)
Step 5: Lower the pipe-cleaner coil into the Borax solution, and tie the other end of the string around a pencil or pen, so that the coil won’t touch the bottom of the jar when you rest the pencil on the jar’s rim. Let the coil sit undisturbed for about 5 hours, covered with a dish towel, then remove it from the solution and pat dry with a paper towel. Cut off the string.
Step 6: Paint the crystal’s edges with metallic enamel paint. Tip: Load only a small amount of paint onto your brush at a time — it will spread over the crystal’s surface rather quickly. When you’ve finished, clean the brush with paint thinner and rest the crystal on a spool or a bottle top, out of direct sunlight (which can cause the color to fade). Let dry, then glue the crystal to the box lid with E6000 glue.