Tuesday, February 09, 2010

My first Metal-smithing project!

I have completed my first project for my metal-smithing class.

They are NOT perfect, and I'll look at them in a year and want to make tons of changes. But right now, I'm feeling very satisfied.

First, I drew a flower shape on paper, kind of like a daisy or a sunflower. Then I drew the cut-outs inside the petals.

Then, I taped the flower drawing onto metal and cut it out using a jeweler's saw....

Which sounds so simple when I write it, but is torture. I've now been told two pieces of helpful advice for using a jeweler's saw. The first is, "Better learn to enjoy the process, 'cuz you'll be doing it a lot." The second bit of advice was to treat the saw like a baby bird... Gently, and with very little pressure.

The third step was to file and sand the sharp edges and make them pretty. Which took forever.... and ever.... Then I pickled them in an acid to clean them.

Next, I annealed the flowers. Which means I heated them with a torch to soften the metal so that I could work with it. After that, I was able to gently shape them into lovely little flower buds.

Finally, I used all my other jewelry designer skills, and turned them into pearl earrings.


NuminosityBeads said...

I took a metalsmithing class in Thailand when we were traveling. I'm starting to amass a bunch of tool from garage sales down here in AZ.

I just did a farmers market near Tucson today. It's nothing like selling in Fairbanks. We're so lucky to get so many customers there. It won't be too long before we start up again!

Thanks for following my blog. I hope you enjoy it.


RandiSirevaagNelson said...

Beautiful work Becca!