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Working with Metal Patinas!

I love metal jewelry. I am sure you can tell, based on the fact that I make solely metal jewelry! It just has so many possibilities.

For this collection of earrings I wanted to play with color and texture on metal.

I used Vintaj Patina's to create the color on the metal. If you want to purchase that it's on Amazon or at most local craft stores. If you want to texture you're metal you'll have to either buy pre-textured metal or buy a very expensive metal rolling mill. You can do that to, if you want, they sure are fun to use, but cost between $300-$2000.

Ok, so here are some of my basic steps I use.

1. Decide on the shape.

I do this by drawing and cutting out various shapes on paper until I decide what I like.

Step 2: Trace

I trace the shapes on to the metal using a sharpie. I also try to make sure I make the most use of the space on the metal sheet as well as making sure my cuts will be easy to make. I am using both copper and brass 26 gauge metal sheets.

Step 3: Cut it out!

Cut the metal out using nice sheers. The trick is to move the metal and the shears together in order to create smooth cuts and corners.

Step 4: File and Fix

The next step is to smooth all the unrefined edges. I use a bastard file to smooth corners and an assortment of small files to get the nooks an crannies. I have found that Harbor Freight has the best selection at a low cost of small useful files.

Step 5: Clean

Now you need to clean everything up. Rubbing alcohol will remove the sharpie as wells as excess grease from your hands that can interfere with the patina.

Step 6: Patina!

Now we get to add the color. Lay out your finished pieces on a piece of plastic so that the earrings don't stick to protective surface. I am using a scrap of a baggy, you can use saran wrap or anything plastic. put a small amount of the patina in a tray or right on your plastic and paint it right on the metal. If necessary wait for it to dry to do a second coat. Around 5 minutes depending on how thick it is. DON'T TRY TO PAINT A SECOND COAT BEFORE THE FIRST ONE IS DRY! Seriously, if messes everything up. Not that I would know...or wait yes, because I have done it many times and it's so frustrating.

Step 7: Wait

Ugh....I am so bad at waiting. After you have all your coats on you need to let these dry over night, preferably for 24 hours.

Step 8: Assemble

Put them all together and viola you have beautiful earrings!

If you want to see a more detailed description of the process, check out the video!

These are currently on sale at Colorado Feed & Grain in Timnath. They will soon be making it onto the website!


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