I don’t think you really need a tutorial to make bottle cap earrings and I’ve never even been interested in making them, but I just cut a case of Cheerwine bottles into glasses and every bottle came with it’s perfect little cap and I felt bad throwing them all out. So this tutorial is like troubleshooting more than anything.
You see the regular cap earrings all the time but if you want something a little different, you need to get a dapping (sometimes called doming) block. I think with a coupon I got mine at Harbor Freight for about $30. Normally the set is @$50. I have one because I like doming coins for pendants. So, dapping block set with the two largest punches, a hammer, some bottle caps and a sharp nail. If you have a hammer like mine, I used the plastic side, not the brass. Seems to work better here.
Troubleshooting: some tutorials say to place the caps on a hot plate or candle warmer for a few minutes so you can peel off the rubber backing inside. I can’t for the life of me tell you why that matters. Not only does it not matter, but it was a real time consuming pain in the ass. Don’t bother. Also – don’t hammer the nail hole until AFTER you’ve domed your caps. I tried it before and the cap crumpled and closed over the hole. They were ugly and unuseable.
I used the three largest dome sizes, starting with the largest (duh). I suggest 10 easy whacks with the hammer and largest punch to get a dome started so you don’t crumple it weird, then wail on it 7-10 more times.
Move onto the next smallest dome and whack 10 more times. Or more if you’re feeling aggresssive. Then I go onto the next smallest and use the #23 punch – 10 more whacks or until I’m satisfied.
You are going to want your nail hole going from inside to outside so you don’t smush your pretty cap. The trick is trying to keep it in one place and not slide around so you get the hole in the general range of the top of the cap. Good luck with that, I don’t yet have a good tip.
Yes, I know, it looks like I am hammering right into my floor. Get a piece of wood – be better than me. Without much difficulty you’ll get a hole you can then put a headpin or big jump ring through for earrings, pendant, keychain, what have you. Enjoy your upcycling.
P.S. If you are thinking “hey, that looks cool but I’m not going to buy a dapping block set”, never fear. I put them in the etsy store: StrangeLittleGirl