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Welcome to the weird and hopefully wonderful world of my imagination , jewellery inspired by the animal life around me and the mysteries of history.
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Wednesday, 8 November 2017

As I have noticed a few people finding there way here recently I thought I'd do a quick pictorial how it is done sort of post.
First, cut the designs of of sheet metal and hammer to shape.
Three brass pieces already worked on a bit, and a sheet of copper ready to be cut up.

 All cut up, and roughly sanded to take off the sharp edges. The copper pieces are ready to be hammered.
After everything that needs to be is hammered out, the backs are coated with resist and signed. And the first layer of nail varnish resist is applied. There is a cactus appearing at this point, in an here's one I started a week ago way....
The pieces then go into the etch tank for 10 to 15 minutes or so to etch the first layer.


 
After the first dunking they are rinsed off and a second layer of resist is painted on, some of this is proper etching resist which is scratched to produce the pattern (the black stuff) . For others it is more nail varnish or in the case of foxes a mixture of the two. These all have to sit around drying before being etched again. The dog at the top and the badger in the middle will have a third layer of resist and visit to the etch so that the  legs have more depth . The cactus only needed one bout of etching so here is it waiting for its next stage which is being cut out more neatly.
After the second etching, the pieces are rinsed and the resists wiped off with white spirit and nail varnish remover. This is why you rarely see me with nail varnish on, it wouldn't be there long before being stripped off when I am cleaning up my brooches. I've tried wearing gloves but I just get holes in them . The top 3 pieces have had a bit of a brushing with a brass brush, the others are waiting their turn. So after this photo, I file off all the edges as they can get a bit rough in the etch and sand the backs and edges. Next the pieces are polished.

Not the best of pictures, but it was late and very dark when I took this photo just before soldering the backs on. After this this get a good clean, the backs are brushed again , then they are lacquered ready for sale.
 The cats and foxes are or are about to be for sale on Etsy and Folksy, the badger still needs to be patinated before going on sale. The cactus has been soldered to its pot and is still in the shed waiting for a final clean up, brooch back application and a paint. At the rate I am managing to do anything at the moment it will be next week before that is for sale.
So now you know how it is done , as they say on the tv.  My apologies for the quality of the pictures, my workshop is set up for making stuff rather than taking perfectly lit pictures.....









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