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Monday, October 12, 2015

Making Guitar Picks

 I discovered about this thing called a "Pick Punch" which is basically a large guitar pick shaped hole punch. I bought one online through eBay and couldn't wait to get it. Once I got it, I torn it open and began punching into glittery card stock and various different materials.

 Pretty quickly I found what worked and what didn't work. Some materials were too strong to be cut by the punch. I noticed that they sold nylon sheets online for these punches, but I thought I would be able to find one in a store. First I went to Home Depot, Michael's and a few other craft stores and they didn't have anything close. This I wasn't expecting, but it didn't take long until I found great materials. 

My first punches
 In the 'Back to school' section of my local dollar store were index card holders. I wanted to give them a  try. They came in a bunch of different colors and they were the perfect thickness. Similarly-made folders and binders also work well. Part of the trick is finding material that isn't too thin or too thick.

 With the index card holders... I went crazy buying every color I could find and punched away (they were cheap so why not?).  I was in the beginning experimental process. I even had my musician friends check out the guitar picks to see if they were cool looking, durable, and the right feel. I absolutely love doing crafts and especially with cheap things. I bought some cord, earring hooks, closures and made jewelry with them. The sky was the limit, some of them have a sort of translucence so they worked especially well for jewelry.


There are multiple ways to make guitar picks. But there's what I do...

  • Since a big part of what I do is turn trash into treasure, my guitar picks are made out of materials like cigarette boxes. 
  • First I remove the outer plastic wrap from the box and cut them apart. Then I cut them with my Pick Punch. I glue the two sides together having it dry under wax paper and a heavy book (that weighs it down for pressure).
  • Once it's dry I trim & file the edges and paint it. Lately I've been way into glitter so mine have been painted with various colors of glitter. 
  • Next I start processing them by casting them in layers of Mod Podge and sealing them with epoxy resin. Let them cure completely. 
  • You can also make simple plastic guitar picks by cutting up and punching guitar pick shapes out of plastic materials. 
  • Make sure to file the edges with sandpaper or a nail file to touch it up. 
My first custom made BTD (left)  and my newest (right)
 The next phase: making guitar picks with my on design on them. Since I can't do that on my own (with an HP printer and a Pick Punch). I asked around within my music network to find out where folks got custom guitar picks made. Well, all signs pointed to Clayton Custom. And I ordered a batch through them. These ones I will turn into jewelry and use as free swag from BTD. My first batch was done in full color, my second in black and white on a pearl pick.

 Got a whole workshop set up at Rock and Roll Headquarters making guitar picks and jewelry and I'm having a blast doing it.