handmade jewelry & metalsmithing

Posts tagged “handmade jewelry

Handmade Men’s Ring, Hammered Silver and Gold

To begin this ring, I saw the band from a sheet of sterling silver. I snip off chips of 14k gold wire and heat them with a hand torch until they spin into little granules. Using tweezers, flux and gold solder, I place them in line and solder them with a hand torch.

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After pickling it in a warm citric acid bath, It is ready to be shaped into a ring. I first bend it with my fingers and flat nose pliers to bring the ends flush for soldering.

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After soldering and cleaning the solder joint with sandpaper, it is ready to be shaped on the ring mandrel with a rawhide mallet. Then I will use a ball peen jeweler’s hammer to create texture and flare out the edges.

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I polish the ring with white diamond, tripoli and rouge on the buffing wheel. Next, I mix a warm solution of liver of sulphur to darken the polished silver to a purplish black.

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The gold is not affected by the liver of sulphur. I tumble the ring with steel shot for a few hours to add a luster to the black finish. This also work-hardens the ring for wear.

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This ring and more original handmade works are available in my Etsy shop.


New Year of Handmade Adventures

It’s a New year and a time when lots of art lovers are looking for a new outlet. Well, I have some advice: make whatever you want, whenever you can.
If you feel inspired to try your hand at creating something in metal, here are some excellent books to guide you.
The Complete Metalsmith by Tim McCreight
Gemstone Settings by Anastasia Young
The Complete Book of Jewelry Making by Carles Codina
The Design and Creation of Jewelry by Robert Von Neumann
Indian Jewelry Making by Oscar T. Branson
If you can only get one: The Complete Metalsmith
But if you can get two, get that and Indian Jewelry.

This year, keep an eye out for beautiful craftsmanship and make some of your own! Here are some shots of the studios, craftsfolk and craftwork at Colonial Williamsburg for further inspiration.

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Adventures in Torch-Fired Enameling

It’s the start of a good day- going to explore and experiment with the contents of this box!

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After ten years of metalsmithing, I’ve finally become curious about trying my luck with enameling. I’m looking forward to seeing shiny colors and experimenting with torch-firing. I’ve ordered sifters, trivets and colors. No kiln though- I want to be up close for the changing colors and molten glass!

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I’m excited-blue, yellow, black and white opaque enamel to play with!
But first, I will make copper earrings to hold the enamel.

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I love the potential of the copper to be shiny pink, black, purple and red-and the way that plays against the colors of the enamel. So much fun!