I have played around with piercing my ears for many years and have had
almost every portion pierced at one point or another. This was usually done somewhat temporarily as my preferred method was to just run another safety pin through wherever I felt like having a piercing at the time. Eventually I stopped wearing earrings for awhile because of my increasing involvement in physical activities which made them liabilities (karate, rugby, etc.). This resulted in all but the two oldest and most used holes (one in each lobe) closing up completely. Late in '96 I began to feel that I wanted to do some work with my ears and that the winter lull would allow me the necessary healing time. I decided that this would be a good chance for me to explore stretching.
I began by working on my left ear first. After some research I decided
to work entirely with wood. I started by forcing a round toothpick through the hole. This initial 're-opening' of the hole and immediate stretching was a bit uncomfortable but not at all problematic. There was a little swelling but nothing to worry about. I followed the basic piercing cleaning regimen and would usually remove and replace the toothpick each day. To effect the stretch I would work flat toothpicks in around the round one. This worked quite well. I did go a little to fast at one point early on and the interior was raw and bleeding slightly. I held at that size and continued cleaning and replacing for a few days and all was fine again. During this period I noticed that the hole tried to heal to the edges of the wood, giving me an odd shaped hole at times. I fooled around with it a bit, managing a square,triangle, and clover like shape for brief periods. I belief if I had maintained the jewelry the shape would have maintained as well.
At a certain point I had the idea of going to a hardware store and
getting some dowels. I got them in increments of 1/16 and with a pocket knife and file made a set of wooden tapers. Using these tapers I went the rest of the way up to my current 1/2 inch diameter. The whole process went for about 2-3 months.
I was very pleased with my new left ear and wanted to begin my right.
This was delayed by a season of rugby and other involvement's. I was finally able to start at the beginning of this past summer ('97). Armed with the knowledge gained from my left ear and some more research I was able to take a my right ear from a fresh piercing with a sewing needle to a 1/2 inch in about 3-4 weeks. I started with one round toothpick and then went straight to wooden tapers. I am currently training both ears for lifting and have them at a combined capability of approx. 10 pounds (including snaplinks and chain). The lifting stretches the holes beyond 1/2 inch, but they recover quickly and I still wear jewelry at that size. I make all my own jewelry from wood. Wood, I have found, is cheap, easily manipulated to my desires, easily replaced, and absorbs body oils eliminating the smell sometimes reported with piercings. I plan to stretch my lobes further in the future and to see what effect this has on lifting.
questions, comments, etc are welcome
Erik Sprague email: firstname.lastname@example.org pages at members.aol.com/spidergod5/index.html
submitted by: Anonymous
on: 25 Sept. 1997
in Ear Piercing