Thursday, March 17, 2011

Transform ready-made elements into hand-crafted style

I have these great, ready-made silver-plated quick link rings from Beadalon, shown at the top of this photo. They're about the diameter of a quarter. They're really cool, but for my style they're just a tad too shiny, too perfectly formed. Others love these attributes, but I like more of a hand-crafted look in my work.

First I hammered them with a small rivet hammer, flipping them on my steel block to hammer both sides. Those rings are shown in the middle of this photo. They looked way better to me, but I still wanted more.

I decided to oxidize them. Using bowls designated for crafts only (with  NOT FOR FOOD written on them in marker) I first mixed a neutralizing solution of baking soda and plain water in one bowl--about 2 tablespoons of soda to maybe a pint of water. Next I heated water in a glass bowl, and put in two drops of Patina Gel Liver of Sulfur. It's really stinky so open a window. I used tweezers to dunk the rings, watching them darken and removing them quickly right into the baking soda water to stop the reaction from getting too black. Then I rinsed them in plain water and dried them off. My oxidized quick links are the bottom rings in this photo. They totally look like fused silver rings that I made myself!

 Cool, huh! Plus, the liver of sulfur solution degrades in a couple days and makes a great fertilizer. Just store it in a jar until it turns clear, then water your tomatoes!

1 comment:

  1. So glad to read this info about the liver of sulfer. I've read so many times about how it smells, and that has turned me off from trying it. You made the entire process sound so easy, and I can help out my plants. :)