I recently redid my displays, too, I was tired of the usual black
velvet. For necklaces, I had been using the easel kind of busts, not
the more sculptural style. I took my old black ones & traced the
different sizes onto black core mat board, & cut several of each
out. I also traced & cut out the easel backs, and glued them on.
Then, I covered the fronts of these new busts with colored paper to
match my also-new overall setup (chocolate brown & sage green). I had
originally used the fabrics leftover from my display skirts & such,
but the fabric is really tricky to cut neatly around the busts'
curves, and the edges started to fray. Fray-check didn't help. In
the end, I just got colored card stock in the scrapbooking section of
the craft store, a paper with a little texture to it (either visual
or physical texture). You don't want the paper to be so plain &
smooth that it marks up easily or just looks dull. The nice thing
about the paper, too, in addition to it being cheap & easy to cut,
is you don't have to worry about stacking the busts & having the
velvet "smoosh" oddly. Another paper idea is to use tissue paper in
the right color. Crinkle it up really well, then smooth it out. Spray
your adhesive on the bust carefully so there aren't any really wet
spots, or else they'll soak through the tissue and look bad. Smooth
the tissue out carefully as you glue it on, and the texture will be
just enough to be interesting, but not so much as to be distracting.
I had really wanted to go that route, but couldn't find tissue in
the right colors (in quantities smaller than a case load!). Anyway,
the busts look just the same as the velvet ones, just with a
different covering on them.
For pendants & earrings, I had had the little stand-up things with
two slits in the top. I basically made the same thing out of the
black mat board & covered them with the paper, too. I cut little
folded triangles & glued them on the back so they'd stand up. For
bracelets, I'd been using ramps, and I haven't come up with a good
way to make those, so I just lay those out flat in my display.
To make the busts & the pendant/earring display props is a bit of
work, but I basically spent a day doing them for my whole display
(more than 5 cases worth), and now they're done & they looks great.
Very unique, all custom to my display. And if I ever decide I want to
change all my colors again, I can just take the paper off the fronts
of the mat board pieces & put on something else, most of the work is
There are some good templates out there for making a slightly more
dimensional necklace bust from paper, too. I did one myself that I'd
be happy to share the link for. I don't do these for my show display
because I don't want to bother taking them apart & putting them back
together, I don't know how long they'd last for that. If they just
stay put up, though, they're good. I had bought one at a very nice
supply place in Germany, I had seen them in many fine jewelers' store
windows there, made from corrugated paper. They were $8 a pop,
though, so I figured I could do them cheaper myself. Anyway, the link
Designs by Lisa Gallagher