Tuesday, October 16, 2012

More homemade shark teeth

Nichelle isn't the only one who's made shark teeth charms from scratch.  Years ago--long before Rio Rondo offered photo etched charms--I faced the same challenge and came up with a similar but different solution.

I used large plastic sequins for the base material of my charms.  These sequins cost less than five dollars at Hobby Lobby and look convincingly metallic.  Their only real drawback is that they scratch easily.
I used a pencil punch and mallet to make holes in the disc...
and then cut out the charms with a sharp pair of scissors.  The plastic cuts easily, but it does take a little practice to get the shapes smooth and consistent. 
I don't have a close-up photo of the finished charms on the halter, but you can kind of see them in this photo of Shalimay.
Yet another method of making homemade halter charms can be found on Abby Marston's website.  As always, I'm intrigued by all the different solutions to a single tackmaking challenge.  Rio Rondo and the World of Model Horse Collecting are wonderful resources, but it's easy to become overly dependent on them.  Every tackmaker should experiment with making hardware from scratch every now and then!


  1. Ooh-thanks for posting!! I'm making an arabian costume right now, and I didn't really want to order shark teeth charms from them, so I'll be sure to try this method first!

  2. Oooh I like this method better! I'll have to keep an eye out for those next time I'm out buying supplies. :D

  3. My hands are hurting just thinking of cutting those tiny things out!!

  4. I bought these years and years ago so I have no idea if they're still available. In addition to the sharks teeth, I've also used them to make little brass nameplates. The plastic is quite soft and is no harder to cut than cardstock. I wish they didn't scratch so easily. That's really their only downside.

  5. If you made the entire halter in the picture, what kind of braid/weave/thing did you use??? I just can't find out what other people are using!

    Thanks! DC♥

  6. I love your tack tips! Could you do one on organizing all the tack making supplies? By the way I followed your description cards and my cards couldn't be better!

  7. Sorry to disillusion you, but I am NOT someone who should be writing an article about studio organization. My work area is a mess! I can usually find my tools, but nearly every project includes a hunt for some misplaced part or piece. It's pitiful!

  8. I know the feeling! What about making sure something we use is to scale? I seem to have trouble with that

  9. As far as scale goes, you can go one of two routes. You can measure the real item and do the math. Traditional scale models are roughly 1:9 scale, so one divide the true measurement by 9 to get the model size.

    Except for when I'm making props, I pretty much never do that.

    Mostly I compare the part of the tack to a part of the horse. Is the buckle as big as the horse's eye? If it's not, probably the model buckle shouldn't be either.

    It's impossible to get everything perfectly in scale, but this method works pretty well for me!