Sunday, 24 May 2015

Sea treasures and seed pods

I love the challenge of making something from an idea in my sketchbook. Sometimes the finished piece changes during the making, as happened with the green pendant - named 'Octopus Garden'

The blue pendant kept pretty much to the original drawing. This one really stretched me in terms of working out in which order to solder everything, I used all the different grades of solder - hard, medium, easy and finally extra easy.

I can't believe how far I've come since my first tentative steps in silversmithing 2 years ago, and I finally feel that I can I can make pretty much anything I can imagine or sketch. For the pendant below, based on sketches of seed pods I even managed to beat my old Nemisis - the dreaded sweat soldering. Sweat soldering means melting the solder on one piece of metal then placing it on top of another piece of metal and heating it from underneath until the two pieces fuse together. The leaf on the bail uses this technique. This piece is now ready to have all kinds of pretty things put into it.

Thank goodness I have a tumbling machine to do the polishing, it would take ages to get into all the little crevices. I just put my pieces in the tumbler then let the steel shot and barrelbrite do all the hard work while I sit outside the back door and get soothed by the machine gently swishing away.