Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Works in progress - Lotus Blossom Set, Stargazer Lily Earrings and Swallow

I thought the process on how I make some of my jewellery might interest you. I've recently been making lots of shapes from copper and brass sheet. Here are a few examples of works in progress. The next post will show some of them as the finished articles. The process itself is quite long winded and it took me all day to make the items below. Just to give you an idea of the work involved.

I started off with a paper template for this lotus blossom. Then I drew around it with pencil and cut it out with tin snips. (This is 0.3mm copper sheet.) At this point the edges are quite sharp and bend every which way.

I then cut out another sligthly smaller shape to make the lotus blossom 3D.

Here you can see how the two parts fit together after filing and drilling holes and shaping.

I added two more smaller lotus blossoms for earrings.

Before filing and shaping:

After filing and shaping:

My next project were two stargazer lily shapes for earrings. As you can see they are very small, and were quite difficult to handle. Below on the right is the shaped and filed lily. The one on the left has not been filed or shaped yet.

Here are the finished lilies, complete with oxidisation. I've used a pencil blow torch as I found I get a greater variety in colour and texture. Now they're finished, the stargazer lilies have a very natural feel about them and look a bit like star anise.

Here's a close-up to show the texture and colour:

This is project number three. Again, I've made a template for the swallow, then cut it out of copper sheet, filed and shaped it, then used embossing tools to add detail.

I've also oxidised the bird slightly to add some more texture and more colour to the embossed detail, however I will use liver of sulphur to bring out the detail even more.

Here are all the projects together, finished and all the sharp edges, left after filing and shaping, removed:

And here's a sampling of the tools I've used:


  1. No wonder your hands are sore! What a lot of work, but worth the effort. I love your mini-anvil!!!

  2. Its interesting to see the process and the finished work - excellent


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